The Sabbath and Worship Music
Reverence in God’s Sanctuary. Lastly, church music should be reveren- tial, in tune with the sacred nature of worship. It is significant that of the eight words used in the New Testament to express a worship response to God, only
one of them is used in Revelation.26
It is the Greek word prokuneo, which is
commonly translated “to worship” or “to prostrate.” The term appears 58 times in the New Testament, 23 of which occur in Revelation.27
The term prokuneo is compound of two roots: pros meaning “toward” and kuneo meaning “to kiss.” When combined, they imply the honor and respect demonstrated toward a superior. Time and again we are told in Revelation that heavenly beings “fell down and worshipped Him” (Rev 4:10; 5:14; 7:11; 11:17; 15:4; 19:4).
It is significant that John the Revelator uses only prokuneo to describe the reverential worship of end times. The reason could be the need to warn the end- time generation not to be misled by the false worship of Babylon, characterized by feverish excitement. God is holy and we worship Him with deep respect, awe, and affection. Both in the Jerusalem Temple and in the heavenly sanctuary, God is worshipped with great reverence and respect. The same attitude should be manifested in our worship today, because God does not change.
Today we live in a world of feverish activity, constant entertainment, and close familiarity. This is reflected also in some of the contemporary pop music that treats God with frivolity and irreverence. The worship in the earthly and heavenly Temples teaches us that we need to bow in humility before our great God. Sacred music can help to quiet our hearts and souls so that we can more clearly recognize who our God really is and respond to Him in reverence.
We noted at the outset that music is like a glass prism through which God’s eternal truths shine. Through church music, a whole spectrum of biblical truths can be taught and proclaimed. Throughout church history people have learned through music the great truths of the Christian faith and the claims of Christ upon their lives.
In an attempt to bring about worship renewal, many evangelical churches today are adopting religious rock songs on the basis of personal taste and cul- tural trends rather than on clear theological convictions. The result is that some popular songs sung during church services have an inadequate or even heretical theology oriented toward self-satisfaction.
The choice of appropriate church music is crucial especially for the Sev- enth-dayAdventist church, because through her music she teaches and proclaims the end-time truths entrusted to her. Regretfully, the music and worship style