CONGREGATIONAL SINGING.

THE editor of the Baptist Record, in remarking upon an article from another paper upon this subject, holds the following language, viz:

“This point has for some time been decided in our minds – the music from a scientific choir, is not any part of congregational worship. Let us have good singing in our churches, but let us have that kind of singing, in which all the congregation can “join with sweet accord, in hymns around the throne.” What would Paul and Silas think of the music in some of our churches at the present day?”

“It would be well for some churches to consider seriously the many objections that are urged against their choirs. They are such independent things, that there is no governing them.”

There are some other practices very common in the New School churches, to which we will call the attention of our friend Jewell. If he thinks that Paul and Silas would be surprised to find modern religionists worshiping with fiddles, and choirs of hired infidels, organs, and other machinery, what does he think would be their astonishment at witnessing the railroad improvements which have been made in preaching, in. dispensing with the offence of the cross, in accommodating the doctrine, the manner, and delivery, to the taste and desire of the fashionable, polite, and wealthy of the world? What credit would they be constrained to award the “President and Directors, & Co.,” of the colleges and theological seminaries, for getting out such swarms of lilly-fingered orators for our velvet cushioned pulpits? And praying too; should Paul and Silas, who, in their day, knew not how to pray as they ought, but had to depend on the Spirit to help their infirmities, govern their desires, and direct their affections, when they come to hear our modern scientific clergy say or read their prayers to the gods of missions, of Sabbath schools, and of other modern religious inventions; prayers performed by quantity in the latest fashion and most popular style, the value of which to be estimated in dollars and cents? What would be their opinion of baptism performed in tubs and cisterns, in the basement of the meeting house, with apparatus to warm the water in cold weather? Of the substitution of cold water for wine in the administration of the Lord’s Supper Of religious fairs,with their apparatus of wheels of fortune, sham post offices for the sale of love letters, lottery, and other pious gambling, in aid of the Lord’s treasury? Or should these two Old School Baptists, after coming out from the inner prison where their feet had been made fast in the stocks, be ushered into a Baptist Religious tea party, to regale themselves on ice creams, hot oysters, prize poundcakes, and sweetened water, in contrasting the present with the past would they not involuntarily exclaim, “O tempora, O mores?

New Vernon, N.Y.,
July 1, 1844

Elder Gilbert Beebe
Editorials Volume 2
Pages 456 – 458