Question:

What is your opinion on one song leader bassing into the microphone (or beat boxing as I call it) while the other lead songs? It seems like a lot of our churches of Christ are starting to feel comfortable with this practice. I thought sing means to singing. And if we are all supposed to be singing and making melody in our hearts then if bassing into the microphone is approved by God then shouldn’t the entire congregation be bassing? The leadership at our congregation doesn’t approve of it and said our congregation will not start doing it. But there are other congregations in our area who approve of it. I know if something is offensive to our brother and the Bible doesn’t condemn it, then we should respect our brother. But I'm starting to get confused with this practice because some churches of Christ in our area approve it while others say it should not be practiced. I grew up in a Pentecostal church and almost two years ago I was added to the Lord's church. I’m starting to see a lot of questionable things going on that reminds me of the Pentecostal church that other churches of Christ in our area are doing. What’s going on with the Lords church? I don’t want to be confused.


Answer:

There aren't two song leaders. There are two vocalists everyone else is singing along with. It would be no different than a church having a choir where the congregation joins in with singing.

The practice is wrong because the person "bassing" is not singing. He is making sounds, but the core of singing is the words, not the music. "Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord" (Ephesians 5:19). Bassing fails because no speaking is taking place.

The practice is also wrong because it is done for entertainment of the people and not because it was commanded by God. "For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ" (Galatians 1:10).

What is happening to churches of Christ? The same thing that has always happened (See Revelation 2 and 3). Satan gets in and destroys the faith of congregations. The death is often slow, and it takes a while before such unfaithful groups decide they are embarrassed to call themselves a church of Christ. We have a world full of people who call themselves Christian, but act nothing like a follower of Christ. In the same way there are groups who call themselves a church of Christ, but who are not faithful to the Lord.

Thank you for that spiritual insight. It saddens me when I hear a brother in the Lordís church defending such a practice. Sometimes itís hard to decipher what is acceptable and what isnít when you have some prominent ministers in the brotherhood accepting this practice at their local congregations.

How should a problem like this be addressed? Back in the ďBible daysĒ I can see Paul writing a letter to the various churches that are misrepresenting the word of God. But how should we go about it today? Our ministers and elders have made it known that our congregation will not allow such nonsense, but how can we get the attention of the other congregations? Should we not fellowship with them?

The apostles were tasked by Christ to work with congregations and between congregations. They had the authority to tell what had to be done. "Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven" (Matthew 18:18). You and I can tell others what ought to be done, but we have no means of enforcing it when those involved are attending other congregations. We can see to it that our own members are well educated about the problems and we can refuse to announce or attend events at congregations who are straying from the truth. We can also refuse to support preacher who accept or promote false doctrine. But we have no way to make another congregation behave.

Along with teaching our own members, we can be vocal with our teaching so that others know where we stand on issues. Hopefully some among the straying congregations will hear the truth being presented and decide to take a stand against error.