Should Musicians “Set-Up”
During Final Prayer?
There has been a disturbing trend that I have witnessed occur with increasing frequency at the conclusion of many Christian church services, or theological conferences. It happens when a pastor, theologian, or Bible teacher is ending his sermon or lecture with an impassioned prayer to our Heavenly Father, and there is noticeable disruptive activity. There is a distraction which takes place, by the musicians who provide the concluding worship music. Many of the musicians seemingly appear oblivious to the final supplication to God on behalf of the entire assemblage. They amble into their positions and employ that “closing” prayer time to set-up for the final worship song, and unlike everyone else in attendance, who actively prays along with the beseeching man of God, are missing that spiritual nutrient vital to feeding their souls. In almost every situation when there is a gathering of believers, the worship band usually misses part, or the entire closing prayer orated by the pastor or lecturer. It is as if they are exempt or excluded from that particular prayer and are not part of the unity of all believers in attendance. Do our musicians not need prayer, especially the final blessing from a man of God, who implores everyone to pray along with him? Are they not equally valuable as all believers?
Are church leaders so concerned with keeping rigid “time schedules” that they insist on having their musicians employing the final prayer time preparing for the last song? Is the rational that of, therefore the musicians should be excluded from participation in the final congregational prayer? That form of practice may not be appropriate with the ways of God (Isa. 55:8-9), and it does give the appearance of church polity or orchestration transcending God and mitigating absolute and total reverence of Him. I think it is safe to say, that a pastors or theologian’s closing prayer is intended for ALL attending believers, therefore participation by everyone should be the norm; a unified holy reverence. It is my belief, that God does not receive complete reverence and honor when the musicians do not partake in the final corporate prayer.
If we believe there is power in corporate prayer, and trust that God hears every supplication made from every one of His praying saints, it is essential for every gathering believer to pray in reverence. Pastors or theologians of our churches, seminars, or conferences, should Biblically evaluate and discern the propriety of this modern day trend. All musicians desperately need prayer just as any finite, fallen and sinful creature, who constantly requires Gods’ intervention (through prayer) in their lives.
Incidentally, I believe the musicians should not be held culpable for this error, for they are typically following instructions from church leaders; “Obey your leaders, and submit to them; for they keep watch over your souls, as those who will give an account… (Heb. 13:17). The writer of Hebrews is very ostensive regarding the laities obedience to their church leaders, and those leaders will give account to God for any erroneous instruction to any of his flock. Therefore, my appeal is to pastors, elders, and conference hosts, to consider the point I am presenting in this article. Furthermore, anyone not participating in corporate prayer is a potential transgressor to God’s holiness. Please prayerfully, examine this issue, and bless the musicians by having them fully participate in the final corporate prayer, because it is an intended divine and sacred blessing upon their souls. All prayers offered to God are significant and important, because we are to always give complete, reverent, unhindered, and glorious devotion to our Lord. (Deut. 6:5, Jos. 22:5, Matt. 22:37, Mark 12:30, Luke 10:27). Sha-Lom-a-ley-Khem!