Thursday, March 3, 2022

Why I am vehemently against Exclusive Psalmody (EP)

Those that are familiar with me know I am very staunchly against EP. It is definitely not because I am against Psalm singing. I love the Psalms and hold them in highest regard. They should be frequently sung in worship.

That being said, among the many issues I have with EP, there are 2 that preeminently stick out in my mind (all emphasis mine):

1. EP does not allow the "whole council of God" to be included in sung worship, vs allowing it in all other elements.

Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all, for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God. Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood. [Acts 20:26-28 ESV]

2. EP diminishes the glory due the name of Jesus from His loving church by both omitting His New Testament (NT) revealed name in sung worship, as well as not singing of all His wondrous works and deeds as faithfully recorded in the NT.

But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them ever sing for joy, and spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may exult in you. [Psalm 5:11 ESV]

Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works! [Psalm 105:2 ESV]

I keep harping on this to hopefully dissuade any brethren that are practicing or considering EP from doing so and maybe, just maybe, bringing to light arguments EP church leadership may not have considered.

I do not consider EP as heresy, but it is a significant error, therefore I feel a sense of responsibility to speak out against it. I know I may seem obsessive or harsh in terms of my approach, but I genuinely care that the Bride is given the opportunity to practice Her right to fully sing praises to, and in the revealed name of, Jesus.

How can we have pure worship without including all of the Lord's revealed Word as a source in every element?

The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times. [Psalm 12:6 ESV]

And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God. [Philippians 1:9-11 ESV]

I abjectly apologize for the times I have been uncharitable and promise to do a better job of tempering my responses.


Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Argument against Exclusive Psalmody from the Psalms

Exclusive Psalmody (EP) is a doctrine that has been adopted by some historically reformed churches. In brief, EP adherents claim that the 150 Psalms of the Old Testament (OT) are the only Biblically warranted songs allowed in worship. This supposedly aligns with the reformed Regulative Principle of Worship (RPW) that is summarized as "if commanded, required - if not commanded, prohibited".

The argument against EP and aligned to the RPW is as follows:

1. The Psalms are a trustworthy guide to proper worship.

2. The Psalms command that we sing of the works and deeds of the Lord:

[Psalm 9:11 ESV] Sing praises to the LORD, who sits enthroned in Zion! Tell among the peoples his deeds!

[Psalm 105:2 ESV] Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works!

[Psalm 107:22 ESV] And let them offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, and tell of his deeds in songs of joy!

3. The works and deeds of the Lord Jesus are most fully revealed in the New Testament.

4. The Psalms command new songs (Psalms 33:3Psalms 40:3Psalms 96:1Psalms 98:1Psalms 144:9Psalms 149:1)

Therefore, new songs concerning the works and deeds of Jesus from the NT are commanded and required for proper worship.

Therefore, EP is an erroneous doctrine.

The New Testament is replete with the revealed and explicit works and deeds of Jesus that the Psalms only obscurely reference in "types and shadows", thus the church is commanded to sing new songs of this newly revealed truth. EP demands we exclude in sung worship the revealed works and deeds of Jesus as clearly revealed in the NT.

Remember, to invalidate the conclusions, you must first invalidate the premises or prove non sequitur.

“The New Testament lies hidden in the Old and the Old Testament is unveiled in the New" - St. Augustine

*I reserve the right to tune the wording/format for (hopefully) additional clarity. Just be aware if you are quoting this.

Why I am vehemently against Exclusive Psalmody (EP)

Those that are familiar with me know I am very staunchly against EP. It is definitely not because I am against Psalm singing. I love the Psa...