By Becki Robinson
“This is a song that never ends, Yes, it goes on and on my friends, some people started singing it—not knowing what it was, and they’ll continue singing it forever just because…..this is a song that never ends….” I apologize for getting this music worm stuck in your head today. My hope is that by the time you finish this article, what was once an annoying song of your childhood will become a motivational song as you journey on in life.
Singing is good for us. It strengthens our immune system, reduces stress and releases those feel good endorphins. In a study of “senior” singers, it was found that those who sang made fewer trips to the doctor, had lower rates of depression and took fewer medications. Singing builds community, increases teamwork and lowers feelings of isolation.
Words that are related to singing or music are mentioned in the Bible in over 1150 verses. A few people who sang in the Bible were: Moses and Miriam after they crossed the Red Sea. Deborah and Barak after God led them in victory against Sisera’s army. David wrote many of his psalms when he was delivered from his enemies. Nehemiah sang after he finished his work on the wall around Jerusalem. Mary sang in celebration of learning that she was carrying the Messiah. Paul and Silas sang after being beaten while still in prison.
The Bible tells us to sing to remember God’s faithfulness and to sing for deliverance from our enemies. We are to sing songs of praise, thanksgiving, and joy. Songs remind us of God’s goodness. We are to speak to one another in songs, and hymns. Revelation tells us that we will sing a new song in heaven.
Sometimes our songs come from an overflow of joy and gladness. God seems to open up heaven and overflow our hearts with His blessings. The result is that a song spills out of us, an effortless melody flowing from within. At other times, we find ourselves in the midst of a dark night, afraid and lacking hope. It is at these times that I cling to Hebrews 13:15.
“Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name.” Sometimes our songs come from sacrifice. David, in 2 Samuel 24:24 and 1 Chronicles 21:4 says that he will not offer to God a sacrifice that costs him nothing. It’s easy to sing songs of praise when things are going our way—but in reality, they cost us nothing.
Jesus knew what it was to sing a costly song in the night. He understands the sacrifice of praise. On the night that Jesus was betrayed, Jesus took the bread, broke it and said, “Take, eat. This is my body broken for you.” And He gave thanks. Before Jesus and his disciples left the upper room, Scripture tells us they sang a hymn. Psalms 113-118 were sung on the night of Passover. These psalms tell the story of Creation, the fall of man, the coming Messiah and His suffering at the hands of men. Jesus knew what it was to sing a song that was a sacrifice of praise.
When we read about offering a sacrifice of praise in Hebrews 13:15, the writer is encouraging us to lift up our painful circumstances just as Jesus took up the bread on the night that He was betrayed. Giving thanks is not a “polly-anna” attitude of feeling happy for our trials. No, giving thanks is to agree with God about our circumstances. Giving thanks is calling on the name that understands. Jesus is in control and knows the beginning and the end. It is during these painful times that God gives us a new song of praise.
Ephesians 2:10 calls us God’s workmanship. The Greek word used there is “poiema”. We are God’s lyrics for the song that He wants to sing through us.
Zephaniah 3:17 says, “…He will rejoice over you with singing. “ You and I are the song that God wants to sing and He wants to sing through us to reach those around us. We are the song that never ends! From before the world began, God began singing your song, through the highs and lows, day and night. YOU are a song that never ends. He continues singing through our lives, on and on — until one day we will sing with Him face to face. “Yes, we are His song that never ends, He sings on and on, my friend. He started singing before the world began and He’ll continue singing for … we are His sing that never ends …”
Becki Robinson co-directs Cross Connect Ministries with her husband, Rex. Robinson is a guest religion columnist.