I was listening to some music on YouTube while cleaning the other day when a song I had never heard before came on and quickly caught my attention. Now, I’m the first to admit that I’m not up on current secular hits and, to be honest, I pretty much only ever listen to Christian music. Usually, it’s my seven-year-old who introduces me to pop music that he’s heard at school or on the bus. Not being very musically savvy, I had no idea that what I was listening to was the newest release from Macklemore, Glorious. The lyrics sound strangely like Christian music, yet I knew something was off.
What is the difference between worship and secular music? Sometimes the lyrics can be almost interchangeable. Is the artist singing about God or a lover? Are the words about worldly achievements or a desire for the things of heaven?
“But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true adorers shall adore the Father in spirit and in truth. For the Father also seeketh such to adore Him. God is a spirit; and they that adore Him, must adore Him in spirit and in truth.” – John 4:23-24
The difference lies in the object of worship and the heart of the worshiper. Though the lyrics to a song may use the name of God, speak of blessings, or reminisce about times of prayer, unless the sole purpose of the song is to glorify and bring God praise, it’s not a worship song.
The person singing the song must also have a heart of worship. Anyone can sing a song about God, but that is not the same as singing to God. As you enter into times of praise and worship, remember this. Just singing along to the lyrics is not worship. Prayerfully focus your mind, body, and soul on bringing God glory through song.
If you’re thinking that it’s easy to tell the difference between the lyrics of secular songs and worship songs, I challenge you to give this quiz a try. It’s harder than you think! Good luck.