Psalms, Hymns and Spiritual Songs
Today’s Scripture Reading: Psalms 106:40-48 | Isaiah 51:1-53:12 | Ephesians 5:1-33 | Proverbs 24:7
Today’s Scripture Focus: Ephesians 5:1-33
“Be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord.” (Ephesians 5:18b-19 NIV)
One good indicator of a life lived in the fullness of the Spirit is a joyful, singing heart. When the Holy Spirit is really in control, he fills you with joy and he fills your heart with singing. Life lived in the flesh doesn’t produce joyful songs, but life in the Spirit always does.
Life lived with eyes focused on circumstances often drags down our spirit, but life lived with eyes focused on Jesus is likely to lead us to singing.
When we try to remain in control, our lives are filled with anxious worry. When we surrender to his control, we are able to sing again.
What type of songs will you sing? “Psalms, hymns and spiritual songs.” In other words, sing all kinds of songs.
If a distinction is to be made between them, the psalms are heartfelt expressions covering nearly every circumstance of life and expressing nearly every emotion. From lament to praise; from sorrow to joy; from times of feeling distant and alone to times of intimacy in his presence; From songs that celebrate God’s faithfulness in the past to songs that look for God’s justice in the future. Through the ages, the psalms have served as a prayerbook that teaches us to pray; a songbook that teaches us to praise.
Hymns certainly includes those well-thought out songs that express our theology. They bring depth to our worship and engage our mind to worship in truth. They keep us anchored in the history and theology of Christian faith.
Spiritual songs are often the simple, sometimes spontaneous songs, which flow from the Spirit. The best ones get passed on to others through worship songs. Simple, heartfelt and God-focused, they express our praise in our heart language. Spirit connects to spirit and song is birthed. We worship in spirit and in truth.
Be filled with the Spirit and sing; let your heart be filled with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs!
Lord, fill me with your Spirit anew and afresh, and fill my heart with singing. Amen.