Elisha said to the king of Israel, “Why do you want to involve me? Go to the prophets of your father and the prophets of your mother.”
“No,” the king of Israel answered, “because it was the Lord who called us three kings together to deliver us into the hands of Moab.”
Elisha said, “As surely as the Lord Almighty lives, whom I serve, if I did not have respect for the presence of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, I would not pay any attention to you. But now bring me a harpist.”
While the harpist was playing, the hand of the Lord came on Elisha and he said, “This is what the Lord says…2 Kings 3:13-15
In this time of social distancing we can get the idea that we don’t need worship. We may wrongly assume, “Since we can’t gather with others, why would we sing worship music?”
There is a unique place that worshiping through music plays throughout scripture. We see over and over again different commands in the Bible to sing to the Lord and worship Him in song. In the above passage with the prophet Elisha, we see worship music become a conduit of the power of the Spirit.
The kings of Israel, Judah, and Edom were going to war against Moab. But on their journey, they find themselves in the desert without any water. They want to seek the Lord’s direction about this and so they find the prophet Elisha.
Elisha only has respect for the king of Judah, but he still decides to inquire of the Lord on their behalf. The first thing Elisha asks for is a harpist to begin to play the harp. It wasn’t until worship music began that the “hand of the Lord” came on Elisha. This is a reference to the anointing of the Spirit coming upon Elisha enabling him to prophesy.
Yes, I believe there is something special about worshiping together as the Body of Christ. After the social distancing is over, I don’t think we’ll ever take that for granted. But worship music isn’t just for the corporate gathering. It is also a conduit of the Spirit for the individual. When we turn our heart, mind, and affections to the Lord in worship, we open ourselves up to the tangible Presence of God.
Even king Saul, who was demonized, found a bit of temporary peace when David would play worship music for him.
…David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spirit would leave him.1 Samuel 16:23
And we know one of the directives of the apostle Paul was for his churches to worship. Paul even connects worship music to being filled with the Spirit.
Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.Ephesians 5:18-20
Now is a time you may need worship music in your life more than ever. Wake up in the morning and spend some time worshiping the Lord through song. Listen to worship music throughout the day while everyone is home. Let worship music be a regular part of your day! As we turn our heart and mind to God throughout the day in song, we’ll experience the Presence and peace of Christ come near to us.