Does Arndt and Gingrich use Psallo to Authorize Instrumental Music as Worship?

Based on Arndt and Gingrich: History shows that Psallo in the Greek of the New Testament does not include instrumental music as worship. I have had the following question and

Lipscomb wrote as late as 1878 that: arndt and gingrich, psallo, arndt and gingrich, psallo,

We do not think anyone has ever claimed authority from Scriptures to use the organ in worship. They only claim it is not condemned. It is used as an assister in worship...Prayer, praise, thanksgiving and making melody in the heart (mind) unto the Lord are acts of worship ordained of God, but no authority do we find for the organ."

Agreement of the Lexicons A Psalm, like a song, is poetry or symbolic language. It can be accompanied "by the heart," it can be accompanied by the voice which is defined as the "harp" of God, or it can be accompanied by what Paul calls a lifeless or carnal instrument. For a discussion of Lexicons Click Here

Agreement from Melody in the Old Testament

Agreement from The Meaning of Poetic Language in the Psalms

Agreement of the Psalms

Agreement of Psalm 150

Argeement of Herodotus

Argeement of the Dead Sea Scrolls

Agreement of the Classics

Agreement of the Hassidim

Testimony and Verification of Paul

Agreement of Pseudepigraphical Writings This literature was written before and following thetime of Christ. While it is not inspired it agrees with all other documents that the mechanical instruments directed to the body is spiritualized under Christ to spiritual instruments made by God to produce "the fruit of the lips."

Instruments are poetic in the Odes of Solomon
The Testimony of Medical Science

Agreement of the Apocrypha jonathan

Agreement of Josephus In Antiquities 7

Agreement of the Church Fathers

Agreement of Catholic Scholars

Agreement of Medical Science

Melody in the Old Testament arndt and gingrich, psallo,

In the Old Testament, the rule was that when instruments were included, you defined the instrument upon which the melody was made: "sing and make melody with the harp." Some examples of melody are:

Isaiah 51:3 prophesies of "the voice of melody" but the NIV, RSV and the LIV translate this "melody" as "the sound of singing." Melody is also used of the religious festivals of Israel where music and temple prostitution went hand in hand:

Take thou away from me the noise of thy songs; for I will not hear
the melody of thy viols. Amos 5:23

Melody with instruments was connected to idolatry, ritual prostitution and was dominated by the women in Israel.

As a living personification of Lucifer (female), the king of Tyre (male) the harps were to remind everyone that the king was really a male:

And it shall come to pass in that day, that Tyre shall be forgotten seventy years, according to the days of one king: after the end of seventy years shall Tyre sing as an harlot. Isaiah 23:15

Take an harp, go about the city, thou harlot that hast been forgotten;

make sweet melody,
sing many songs,
that thou mayest be remembered (as a male). Isaiah 23:16

Again, melody with instruments was connected to commercial - religious prostitution.

Tyre used the musical women to steal even Hebrews as slaves and pick the pocket of buyers from around the world. Click for Wen Amun

What we understand that singing a song and making a melody were not the same thing.

Take a psalm, and bring hither the timbrel, the pleasant harp with the psaltery. Psalm 81:2

In hope that God would destroy all of the enemies, the Psalmist was ready to celebrate:

Sing (Melody) unto the Lord with the harp;
with the harp,
and the voice of a psalm. Psalm 98:5
Let the floods clap their hands:
let the hills be joyful together. 98:8

This is clearly symbolic and does not describe a worship service.

Sing here is: hohenwald youth, lewis county, instrumental music,

Zamar (h2167) zaw-mar'; a prim. root [perh. ident. with 2168 (meaning to prune a vine) through the idea of striking with the fingers]; prop. to touch the strings or parts of a musical instrument, i. e. play upon it; to make music,

accompanied by the voice; hence to celebrate in song and music: - give praise, sing forth praises, psalms.

The idea of Zamar is to (1) play a musical instrument which is (2) accompanied by the voice. Paul will reverse the process in spiritual worship. Speaking is the action and the melody is in the heart.

A psalm is: hohenwald youth, lewis county, instrumental music,

Zimrah (h2172) zim-raw'; from 2167; a musical piece or song to be accompanied by an instrument: - melody, psalm.

The psalmist's "lexicon" shows that playing an instrument or zamar may be accompanied by a psalm or zimrah which may or may not be accompanied by an instrument.

Playing a harp is one thing.
Making melody with a psalm is another

God said that as they treated Him, they would treat Ezekiel - like an instrument-playing prostitute:

And, lo, thou art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not. Ezekiel 33:32

Nagan (h5059) to play on a stringed instrument; hence (gen.) to make music: - player on instruments, sing to the stringed instruments, melody, ministrel, play (-er, -ing..

These are "amorous love songs" and playing on the instrument. This was a sign that people treated God and Ezekiel as a prostitute.

In Psalm 71 entitled By David, a psalm sung by the sons of Jonadab, and the first who were taken captive. In verse 8 even captives can praise God:

Let my mouth be filled with praise, that I may hymn thy glory, and thy majesty all the day Psalm 71:8

It is not likely that captives could literally play the harp all day. However, God gave mankind an instrument of singing Psalms:

My mouth shall declare thy righteousness openly, and thy salvation all the day; for I am not acquainted with the affairs of men. Psalm 71:15

I will also give thanks to thee, O God, because of thy truth, on an instrument of psalmody; I will sing psalms to thee on the harp, O Holy One of Israel. Psalm 71:22

My lips shall rejoice when I sing (psalo) to thee; and my soul, which thou has redeemed. Psalm 71:23

Moreover also my tongue shall dwell all the day upon thy righteousness; when they shall be ashamed and confound Psalm 71:24

In Hebrew, the tongue is defined as the "instrument of speech." Here it is the instrument of psalmody. Strongs 3956 (lashown) "used literally as the instrument of licking, eating, of speech."

Augustin, who understood the classical Greek, knew that poetry is poetic and symbolic. On Psalm LXXI Augustin understood that the instrument of psalmody does not mean a mechanical psaltery or harp. Psaltery is from the Hebrew:

Keliy (h3627) kel-ee'; from 3615; something prepared, i. e. any apparatus (as an implement, utensil, dress, vessel or weapon): - armour ([-bearee]), artillery, bag, carriage, / furnish, furniture, instrument, jewel, that is made of, * one from another, that which pertaineth, pot, /

and way down the list psaltery,

Knowing this, Augustin defined the instrument of psalmody:

28. "For I will confess to Thee in the vessels of a Psalm Thy truth" (ver. 22). The vessels of a Psalm are a Psaltery. But what is a Psaltery? An instrument of wood and strings.

What doth it signify? There is some difference between it and a harp: ...there seemeth to be signified by the Psaltery the Spirit, by the harp the flesh.

And because he had spoken of two bringings back of ours from the bottomless places of the earth, one after the Spirit in hope, the other after the body in substance;

hear thou of these two:

"For I will confess to Thee in the vessels of a Psalm Thy truth." This after the Spirit: concerning the body what? "I will psalm to Thee on a harp (flesh), Holy One of Israel."

29. Again hear this because of that same "again" and "again." "My lips shall exult when I shall psalm to Thee" (ver. 23). Because lips are wont to be spoken of both belonging to the inner and to the outward man, it is uncertain in what sense lips have been used: there followeth therefore, "And my soul which Thou hast redeemed." Therefore regarding the inward lips having been saved in hope, brought back from the bottomless places of the earth in faith and love, still however waiting for the redemption of our body, we say what? Already he hath said, "And my soul which Thou hast redeemed." But lest thou shouldest think the soul alone redeemed, wherein now thou hast heard one "again," "but still," he saith; why still?

"but still my tongue also:" therefore now the tongue of the body:
"all day long
shall meditate of Thy righteousness" (ver. 24): that is, in eternity without end.

Paul said to sing with grace in the heart in place of melody when speaking to the Colossians. And we know that nothing is learned by listening to a lecture: learning takes place when we meditate in the heart.

Ferguson, p. 6, notes that: psallo, septuagint,

"In nearly every case the Septuagint translators have paired psallo with a word for vocal praise. Note the following instances: Psalms 18:49 (quoted in Rom. 15:19), "I will confess you among the nations, O Lord; and I will sing (psalo) to your name." Psalm 30:4, 'Sing (psalate) to the Lord, O you his saints, in recollection of his holiness.' Psalms 138:1, "I will confess you, Lord, with my whole heart, because you have heard the words of my mouth; and I will sing (psalo) to you before the angels.' Psalms 135:3, "praise the Lord, because he is good; sing (psalete) to his name, because he is good.' Psalms 146:2, 'I will praise the Lord in my life; I will sing (psalo) to my God as long as I live."

Through thy precepts I get understanding:
therefore I hate every false way.
Psa 119:104

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet,
and a light unto my path .
Psa 119:105

I have sworn, and I will perform it,
that I will keep thy righteous judgments.
Psa 119:106

I am afflicted very much:
quicken me, O Lord, according unto thy word.
Psa 119:107

Accept, I beseech thee,
the freewill offerings of my mouth,
O Lord, and teach me thy judgments.
Psa 119:108

My soul is continually in my hand:
yet do I not forget thy law.
Psa 119:109

The wicked have laid a snare for me:
yet I erred not from thy precepts.
Psa 119:110

Thy testimonies have I taken as an heritage for ever:
for they are the rejoicing of my heart.
Psa 119:111

I have inclined mine heart
to perform thy statutes alway, even unto the end.
Psa 119:112

I hate vain thoughts:
but thy law do I love
Psa 119:113

We simply do not have God wishing to be praised by mechanical devices even though the "trees" praise God and "clap their hands" when the "fellers" have been taken into captivity and the trees can honor God by obeying His commands as a tree.

Ferguson notes that "Only in Psalms 33:3; 98:4ff.; 144:9; and 149:3 do we have psallo with an instrument in parallelism with "singing."

Sing to him a new song; play skillfully with a loud noise. Psalm 33:3LXX

Augustine translates this as poetry or symbolic language.

2. "Praise the Lord with harp:" praise the Lord, presenting unto Him your bodies a living sacrifice. "Sing unto Him with the psaltery for ten strings" (ver. 2):

let your members be servants to the love of God, and of your neighbour, in which are kept both the three and the seven commandments.

3. "Sing unto Him a new song:" sing unto Him a song of the grace of faith. "Sing skillfully unto Him with jubilation" (ver. 3):

sing skillfully unto Him with rejoicing. (See Colossians 3:16 where paul uses grace rather than melody)

4. "For the Word of the Lord is right:" for the Word of the Lord is right, to make you that which of yourselves ye cannot be. "And all His works are done in faith" (ver. 4): lest any think that by the merit of works he hath arrived at faith, when in faith are done all the works which God Himself loveth.

Paul restricted Christian "singing" to the Word of Christ (Colossians 3) or His Spirit (Ephesians 5) which is in His Word (John 6:63). Augustin and all of the church Fathers agree. In another Psalm:

"O God, I will sing a new song to thee: I will play to thee on a psaltery of ten strings. Psalm 144:9LXX

The Meaning of Poetic Language in the Psalms

Augustin understands the symbols of poetry to mean: "What doest thou among them with thy pastoral scrip with five stones in it? Say it to me in another form: that same law which thou hast signified by five stones, signify in some other way also. "I will sing a new song unto Thee, O God" (ver. 9). "A new song" is of grace; "a new song" is of the new man; "a new song" is of the New Testament. But lest thou shouldest think that grace departeth from the law, whereas rather by grace the law is fulfilled,

"upon a psaltery of ten strings will I sing unto Thee."

Upon the law of ten commandments: therein may I sing to Thee; therein may I rejoice to Thee; therein may "I sing to Thee a new song;" for, "Love is the fulfilling of the law."

But they who have not love may carry the psaltery,

sing they cannot.

Contradiction cannot make my psaltery to be silent.

The saints shall rejoice in glory; and shall exult on their beds. Psalm 149:5LXX

The high praises of God shall be in their throat, and the two-edged swords in their hands; Psalm 149:6LXX

to execute vengeance on the nations, and punishment among the peoples; Psalm 149:7LXX

to bind their kings with fetters , and their nobles with manacles of iron; to execute on them the judgment written: this honor have all his saints Psalm 149:8LXX

See how God connects musical praise to bring judgment against people in Isaiah 30:32 LXX below.

In Psalm 149 Augustine utterly condemns out ward praise by performers and puts spiritual praise "in the hearts" and even upon thy bed:

6. "The saints shall exult in glory" (ver. 5). I would say somewhat important about the glory of the saints. For there is no one who loveth not glory.

But the glory of fools, popular glory as it is called, hath snares to deceive, so that a man, influenced by the praises of vain men, shall be willing to live in such fashion as to be spoken of by men, whosoever they be, in whatsoever way.

Hence it is that men, rendered mad, and puffed up with pride, empty within, without swollen, are willing ever to ruin their fortunes by bestowing them on stage-players, actors, men who fight with wild beasts, charioteers. What sums they give, what sums they spend! They lavish the powers not only of their patrimony, but of their minds too.

[Motives and talent make us sympathetic but the almost universal history of theatrical performers was always associated with self worship and silencing truth]

They scorn the poor, because the people shouteth not that the poor should be given to, but the people to shout that the fighter with wild beasts be given to. When then no shout is raised to them, they refuse to spend; when madmen shout to them, they are mad too:

[The role of evangelists is to "go into all the world" and give the water of the word to the hungry and thirsty and dying for truth. There is no other performing role in the New Testament church to use up the resources of poor members]

nay, all are mad, both performer, and spectator, and the giver.

This mad glory is blamed by the Lord, is offensive in the eyes of the Almighty. ...Thou choosest to clothe the fighter with wild beasts, who may be beaten, and make thee blush: Christ is never conquered; He hath conquered the devil, He hath conquered for thee, and to thee, and in thee; such a conqueror as this thou choosest not to clothe. Wherefore? Because there is less shouting, less madness about it.

They then who delight in such glory, have an empty conscience. Just as they drain their chests, to send garments as presents, so do they empty their conscience, so as to have nothing precious therein.

7. But the saints who "exult in glory," no need is there for us to say how they exult: just hear the verse of the Psalm which followeth: "The saints shall exult in glory,

they shall rejoice in their beds:" not in theatres, or amphitheatres, or circuses, or follies, or market places, but "in their chambers."

What is, "in their chambers"? In their hearts. Hear the Apostle Paul exulting in his closet: "For this is our glory, the testimony of our conscience."

On the other hand, there is reason to fear lest any be pleasing to himself, and so seem to be proud, and boast of his conscience. For every one ought to exult with fear, for that wherein he exulteth is God's gift, not his own desert.

For there be many that please themselves, and think themselves righteous; and there is another passage which goeth against them, which saith, "Who shall boast that he hath a clean heart, and that he is pure from sin?" There is then, so to speak, a limit to glorying in our conscience, namely, to know that thy faith is sincere, thy hope sure, thy love without dissimulation.

"The exultations of God are in their mouths" (ver. 6). In such wise shall they "rejoice in their closets," as not to attribute to themselves that they are good, but praise Him from whom they have what they are, by whom they are called to attain to what they are not, and from whom they hope for perfection, to whom they give thanks, because He hath begun.

8. "And swords sharpened on both sides in their hands." This sort of weapon contains a great mystical meaning, in that it is sharp on both sides.

By "swords sharpened on both sides," we understand the Word of the Lord: it is one sword, but therefore are they called many, because there are many mouths and many tongues of the saints.

How is it two edged? It speaks of things temporal, it speaks also of things eternal. In both cases it proveth what it saith, and him whom it strikes, it severeth from the world. Is not this the sword whereof the Lord said, "

I am not come to send peace upon earth, but a sword"?
Observe how He came to divide, how He came to sever. He divideth the saints,
He divideth the ungodly, He severeth from thee that which hindereth thee.

The son willeth to serve God, the father willeth not: the sword cometh, the Word of God cometh, and severeth the son from the father. ...Wherefore then is it in their hands, not in their tongues?

"And swords," it saith, "sharpened on both sides in their hands." By "in their hands," he meaneth in power. They received then the word of God in power, to speak where they would, to whom they would, neither to fear power, nor to despise poverty. For they had in their hands a sword; where they would they brandished it, handled it, smote with it:

and all this was in the power of the preachers.
For if the Word be not in their hands, why is it written,

"The Word of the Lord was put in the hand of the Prophet Haggai"? Surely, brethren, God set not His Word in His fingers. What is meant by, "was put in his hand"? It was put into his power to preach the Word of the Lord. Lastly, we can understand these "hands" in another way also. For they who spake had the word of God in their tongues, they who wrote, in their hands.

Augustin's comments on Psalm 150 can be found by Clicking Here. Most of the historical scholars understood the Psalms as poetic language and did not fall into the trap of having trees clapping their hands.

"The trumpets were assigned a number of complicated signals, which implied their ability of blowing legato, staccato, and trills, and tonguing, all in unison, not 'simultaneously,' but 'as with one mouth.' Moreover, these apocalyptical trumpets bear different names: trumpets of assembly, of battle, of the slain, of ambush, etc.

In generally, they were used to terrorize the enemy into panic (Judges 7:19-20). This function was, for all practical purposes, identical with that of the trumpets of Revelation.

In the temple the signals of the trumpet introduced every ceremony and every sacrifice." (International Dictionary of the Bible, p. 472-3, Abingdon).

"The instruments were used as worship to God and to give glory and elat to the earthly kingdom. They were tolerated by God as were many other things during this period, that he did not approve.

The establishment of the kingdom itself was an act of rebellion against God" (David Lipscomb, Queries and Answers, pp. 226, 227, and Gospel Advocate, 1899, pp. 376, 377).

"The timbrel "was a typical women's instrument. It is mentioned seven times in the OT; thus it must have been very popular. Although it occurs in the Psalter and in religious hymns (Exod 15; Jer. 31:4), it was not permitted in the temple. Its function in the Bible was restricted to secular or religious frolicking, cultic dances, or processions (e. g., II Sam. 6:5; 1I Chr. 13:4; Ps. 68:25). Its absence in the temple ritual was possible due to the strong female symbolism, which always accompanied the tambourine, and which made its use so popular at all fertility rites." (Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible, p. 474, Abingdon).

"Only in Ps 150:3 is it (shophar) mentioned with most of the other really musical instruments. Hence, we must conclude that the function of the shophar was to make noise--be it of earthly or of eschatological character--but not to make music.

"After the destruction of the temple and the general banishment of all instrumental music,

the shophar alone survived, just because it was not a musical instrument." (International Dictionary of the Bible, p. 473, Abingdon).

Instrumental noises were part of the like the nations Monarchy or Kingdom period. Aside from private use, this "music" was only connected to animal sacrifices and at or around the temple.

After Jesus, all sacrifices are completed and it may be legalistic to try to, like David, search for the "lost God."

The Testimony of the Psalms

Sing (zamar) unto the Lord with the harp; with the harp, and the voice of a psalm (Zimrah). Psalm 98:5

If the harp was inherent in the word PSALM then this passage would be very redundant. It would read about like Ephesians 5:19 if you make both psalm and psallo include an instrument:

Sing (with a harp) unto the Lord with the harp; with the harp, and the voice of a psalm (song sung to a harp). Psalm 98:5

If the harp was inherent in the word "psalm" then the Psalmist could have saved space by just writing:

sing a psalm

In the following table Sing is Zamar or Shir, Praise is Yadah. arndt and gingrich, psallo,

There is no "melody" because melody is usually reserved for Lucifer's agents or prostitutes.

When an instrument is involved it is named. The singers would be seen only in a procession so that the enemy can "see God coming and going." The heading "To the Chief Musician" was not part of the original poem.

"The enigmatic musical superscriptions... to the psalms constitutes a real musical terminology, which, however, is almost unintelligible... either the original meaning of these musical terms was then generally forgotten, or, on account of the continuous tradition of the temple, it was still understood, but as a secret closely guarded by the priestly class." (International Dictionary of the Bible, p. 459, Abingdon).

The blue text indicates psalms which are a person seemingly lost and often calling down God's judgment upon the enemy -- often personal enemies. The bold black text shows that these are redundant. For instance, Psalm 33 includes both the psaltery and timbrel are used. The timbrel was not allowed in the temple. Other colors indicate a processionals, new moons, symbolic, vengeance, arousal or awakening the harp, fear of being cast off, historical warning, prophetic.

A typical vengeance song is: arndt and gingrich, psallo,

Let them praise his name in the dance: let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp. Psalm 149:3
Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a twoedged sword in their hand; Psalm 149:6
To execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people; Psalm 149:7

None of these psalms were composed for "congregational worship" but for personal praise. Many of the instruments were not permitted in the temple but were used in processionals on the long roads up to Jerusalem.

If we remove psalms composed as poems and later sung with instruments and used for secular and even superstitious reasons; or remove songs of personal despair, we are left almost totally with psalms which were sung with no indication of the use of instruments.

Sing Only
Ps. 137:2
Ps. 81.2
Ps. 98:6
Ps. 149.3
Ps. 150.4


Ps. 47.5
Ps 81.3
Ps. 98:6
Ps 150.3

Ps. 150. 5




The Testimony of Psalm 150

It is easy to forget that David as the King or the other Psalm writers were not the prophets who were the critics of the priestly and civil governing class of David and other kings. David was not a priest. Therefore, while some of the psalms speak of private devotion they are not "direct commands" for either Jewish or Christian worship. Of the pipe or organ mention in Psalm 150:

"Its (pipe = to love passionately) was apparently a secular instrument and is never listed in the temple orchestra;

only in Ps. 150:4 it is mentioned in a religious (but not ritual) function.

Its ethos was not blameless at all, ase we see from Genesis Rabbah 50: 'The angels said to Lot: 'There are players of the pipe (organ) in the country, hence it ought to be destroyed.'" Its rabbinical identification with the aboda, the flute of the notorious Syrian bayaderes, emphasizes the erotic element which already the Hebrew name suggests." (Interpreters Dictionary of the Bible, p. 460, Abingdon).

The pipe was invented and promoted by Jubal and not God.

And his brothers name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ. Genesis 4:21

Handle means to manipulate, capture to use without authority (h8610). Job used the pipe to describe the children who sang, played and danced showing that they didn't want to hear from God (Job 21). Job also used the organ in a figurative sense of his mouring and weeping.

Of this harp or kinowr mentioned also in Psalm 150 and used by the king, Laban understood that it was really useful for getting the enemy so drunk that he didn't know which bride he had married. And again, old Laban knew that he coult "take away knowledge" with a musical going-away party:

Wherefore didst thou flee away secretly, and steal away from me; and didst not tell me, that I might have sent thee away with mirth, and with songs, with tabret, and with harp? Ge.31:27

The prophets as God's spokesmen against the kings and priests had another view:

And the harp, and the viol, the tabret, and pipe, and wine, are in their feasts: but they regard not the work of the Lord, neither consider the operation of his hands. Isa 5:12

Wherefore my bowels shall sound like an harp for Moab, and mine inward parts for Kir-haresh Isaiah 16:11

Take an harp, go about the city, thou harlot that hast been forgotten; make sweet melody, sing many songs, that thou mayest be remembered. Isa 23:16

The mirth of tabrets ceaseth, the noise of them that rejoice endeth, the joy of the harp ceaseth. Isa 24:8

And in every place where the grounded staff shall pass, which the Lord shall lay upon him, it shall be with tabrets and harps: and in battles of shaking will he fight with it. Isa 30:32

And I will cause the noise of thy songs to cease; and the sound of thy harps shall be no more heard. Eze.26:13

And of the shofar:

"Only in Ps 150:3 is it (shophar) mentioned with most of the other really musical instruments. Hence, we must conclude that the function of the shophar was to make noise--be it of earthly or of eschatological character--but not to make music.

After the destruction of the temple and the general banishment of all instrumental music,

the shophar alone survived, just because it was not a musical instrument." (Interpreters Dictionary of the Bible, p. 473, Abingdon).

And of the timbrel (related to Topheth, the 'king's music grove' and hell itself).

The timbrel "was aa typical women's instrument. It is mentioned seventimes in the OT; thus it must have been very popular. Although it occurs in the Psalter and in religious hymns (Exod 15; Jer. 31:4),

it was not permitted in the temple. Its function in the Bible was restricted to secular or religious frolicking, cultic dances, or processions (e. g., II Sam. 6:5; 1I Chr. 13:4; Ps. 68:25). Its absence in the temple ritual was possible due to the strong female symbolism, which always accompanied the tambourine, and which made its use so popular at all fertility rites." (Interpreters Dictionary of the Bible, p. 474, Abingdon).

The Testimony of Herodotus arndt and gingrich, psallo,

Herodotus shows the effeminate connecton and separates harp-playing and singing. It was requested of Cyrus that rather than destroy the enemy, just make them into women:

Grant, then, forgiveness to the Lydians, and to make sure of their never rebelling against thee, or alarming thee more, send and forbid them to keep any weapons of war, command them to wear tunics under their cloaks, and to put buskins upon their legs,

and make them bring up their sons to cithern-playing (Kitharizein), singing (psallein), and huckstering (Bales p. 107)

So wilt thou soon see them become women instead of men,

and there will be no more fear of their revolting from thee." Click for context

Herodotus, and most ancient writers, associated musical preoccupation with making males helpless and unable to offer resistance. That is, as the Hebrew chalal means, it polluted or prostituted people.

Musical melody was important in the period of Monarchy because it was a period of rejecting God in favor of a human king.

Like the nations legalistic festivals under the Kingdom of Israel where the people demanded to worship like the nations:

Take thou away from me the noise of thy songs; for I will not hear the melody of thy viols. Amos 5:23

Spiritual worship in the Kingdom of Christ:

Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,

singing hohenwald youth, lewis county, instrumental music,
and hohenwald youth, lewis county, instrumental music,
making melody
in your heart to the Lord; Ephesians 5:19

The contrast is powerful: arndt and gingrich, psallo,

Take thou away from me

Speaking to yourselves  

    the noise of THY songs     in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, [Biblical text]  

    for I will not hear the (Audio)

    singing and making

    melody of THY viols. Amos 5:23

    melody in your heart to the Lord; Ephesians 5:19

BUT, let judgment run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream. Amos 5:24 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Eph. 5:20

Amos 5.[23] aufer a me tumultum carminum tuorum et cantica lyrae tuae non audiam

Tumultus an uproar, bustle, commotion, disturbance, disorder, tumult, panic : Of the forces of nature, an uproar, disturbance, storm, tempest, of the mind, agitation, disquietude, tumult

Matt. 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Phort-izō , load them with burdens perissos ta sopha kai ta p. refinements, eros passonate joy, Name of Kleros Aphrodite epoiēsanto me ph., expld. as pepragmateumai, prodedomai, phortos gegenēmai, Call.Fr.4.10P.; ph. erōtos,
A. Poieō , A. make, produce, first of something material, as manufactures, works of art, OPPOSITE of Practical or useful 2. create, bring into existence,genos anthrōpōn
4. after Hom., of Poets, compose, write, p. dithurambon, epea, Hdt.1.23, 4.14; “p. theogoniēn HellēsiId.2.53; p. Phaidran, Saturous, Ar.Th.153, 157; p. kōmōdian, tragōdian, etc., Pl.Smp.223d; “palinōdianIsoc.10.64, Pl.Phdr.243b, etc.; “poiēmataId.Phd.60d: abs., write poetry, write as a poet,orthōs p.Hdt.3.38; “en toisi epesi p.” make sacrifices, religious celebrations mustēriaId.6.28
 Musterion A. mystery or secret rite: mostly in pl., ta m. the mysteries, first in Heraclit.14, cf. Hdt.2.51 (of the mysteries of the Cabiri in Samothrace), etc.; esp. those of Demeter at Eleusis
B. The Levites were the clergy-burden III. of the Levites, “
Kurios autos klēros autouLXX De.18.2: [“ phronēsis tēs sophias kuriōtera” supreme authority
Sophia A. cleverness or skill in handicraft and art, as in carpentry, tektonos, in music and singing, tekhnē kai s. h.Merc.483, cf. 511; in poetry, Sol.13.5 Pi.O.1.117, Ar.Ra.882, X.An.1.2.8, in divination, S.OT 502 (lyr. to sophon ou sophia (v. “sophos” 1.3) Ba.395 (lyr.),

Sophos , ē, on, A. skilled in any handicraft or art, clever, mostly of poets and musicians, Pi.O.1.9, P.1.42, 3.113; en kithara s. E.IT1238 (lyr.) en oiōnois, kithara, E. IT662, 1238
Luke 10:21 In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise [sophos] and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight.
D. Pragma^t-euomai busy oneself, take trouble 2. to be engaged in business, spend one's time in business, 4. simply, write, treat,poiētēs ōn pepragmateutai peri to hieron
phort-i^kos , ē, on: (phortos):—prop. II.  of the nature of a burden: metaph. (cf. “phortos11), tiresome, wearisome, -ōtatē leitourgiamost onerous, <pros> hapanta mimoumenē tekhnē phortikē art that imitates with a view to any and every man is vulgar, of an inflated rhetorical style, “ph. kataskeuēD.H.Lys.3 Epaineo
leitourg-ia ,III. public service of the gods, “hai pros tous theous l.Arist.Pol.1330a13; “hai tōn theōn therapeiai kai l.D.S.1.21, cf. UPZ17.17 (ii B.C.), PTeb.302.30 (i A.D.), etc.; the service or ministry of priests, LXX Nu.8.25, Ev.Luc.1.23.
Epain-eō , approve, applaud, commend, in Hom. mostly abs., “epi d' ēneon alloi AkhaioiIl.3.461, etc.: c. acc. rei, “muthon epainēsantes Odussēos2.335; “muthon e. presbuteroisih.Merc.457
Rest is
AnaPauo make to cease, stop or hinder from a thing, “ lay it in a reposing posture,
     leitourg-eō , earlier Att. lētourgeō  serve public offices at one's own cost (tithes and offerings)
     2. perform religious service, minister, “epi tōn hierōn D.H.2.22; “ KuriōAct.Ap.13.2, etc.
     (Written lit- in Rev.Et.Anc.32.5 (Athens, i B.C.), etc., cf. leitourgion, leitourgos.

Revelation 14.[13] I heard the voice from heaven saying, "Write, 'Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.'" "Yes," says the Spirit, "that they may rest from their labors; for their works follow with them." 

Carmen a song, poem, verse, oracular response, prophecy, form of incantation, tune, air, lay, strain, note, sound (vocal or instrumental): canentes carmina, a composition in verse, poem, poetry, verse, song: cantūs et carmina, melodies and words A charm, incantation: Carminibus Circe socios mutavit Ulixi,
A form of speech, ceremonial phrase, formula (in religious or legal observances): quae (verba) longo effata carmine

Canticum ī, n cantus.—In comedy, a musical monologue, recitative, monody: nosti canticum: agere, L.A song: chorus canticum Insonuit, Ph. —In an orator, sing-song.

lyra ae, flura, a lute, lyre, a stringed instrument invented by Mercury and presented to Apollo: curvae lyrae parens, H.: pulsa manu, O. —Lyric poetry, song: imbellis, H.: opus est leviore lyrā, O.—The constellation, the Lyre: exoriente Lyrā, O.

Pulsō āvī, ātus, āre, freq. pello, to push against, strike upon, beat, hammer, keep hitting, batter, stamp upon , shatter, To drive forth, impel : Erupere   to actuate, agitate, disturb, disquiet : chordas digitis, play upon , V.: cymbala,

Israel failed because they listened to their own self-composed "lexicons." If you still need to dig up a human supporter you can find one defending about anything you wish to do.

The Testimony of the Dead Sea Scrolls

The Thanksgiving Hymns (1QH), Hymn 1 reads in part:

It is Thou who hast created breath for the tongue
and Thou knowest its words;
Thou didst establish the fruit of the lips
before ever they were.
Thou dost set words to measure
and the flow of breath from the lips to metre.
Thou bringest forth aounds
according to their mysteries,
and the flow of breath from the lips
according to its reckoning,
that they may tell of Thy glory
and recount Thy wonders
in all Thy works of truth.

Hymn 9, interprets Psalm 41 which was the prophecy that Judas would not triumph over Jesus where triumph meant "musical rejoicing" (Numbers 10:7):

All who have eaten by bread
have lifted their heel against me,
and all those joined to my Council
have mocked me with wicked lips...

They have overtaken me in a narrow pass without escape

And there is no rest for me in my trial.
They sound my censure upon a harp
and their murmuring and storming upon a zither." Ps.41:11

However, in hymn 11, Jesus triumphs in the Spirit

They enter my heart and reach into my bones to...
and to meditate in sorrowful meditation.
I will groan with the zither of lamentation
in all grief-stricken mourning and bitter complaint
until iniquity and wickedness are consumed
and the disease-bringing scourge is no more.
Then will I play on the zither of deliverance
and the harp of joy,
on the tabors of prayer and the pipe of praise
without end
The Community Rule (1QS) reads in part:
And at the beginning of their weeks
for the season of Jubilee.
All my life the engraved Precept shall be on my tongue
as the fruit of praise
and the portion of my lips.

I will sing with knowledge and all my music

shall be for the glory of God.
(My) lyre (and) my harp shall sound
for His holy order
and I will tune the pipe of my lips
to His right measure.

"Such allegorizing passages contain the nucleuses of the later substance, and perhaps the presage of the future trends of Christian music. The first three centuries of the church witnessed many controversies; some of them concerned themselves directly with music. The most important of these issues were: (a) organized versus spontaneous praying and singing; (b) scriptural versus extrascriptural poems; (c) fusion with Hellenistic music; (d) vocal versus instrumental music; (e) the rise of monasticism and its influence upon ecclesiastical chant." (Interpreter's Dict of the Bible, Music, p. 467).

The Testimony of the Classics

Philodemus of Gadara (c. 100-28 B.C) wrote against Diogenes of Babylon who taught that the gods were worshiped with music.

"Philodemus considered it paradoxical that music should be regarded as veneration of the gods while musicians were paid for performing this so-called veneration. Again, Philodemus held as self-deceptive the view that music mediated religious ecstasy. He saw the entire condition induced by the noise of cymbals and tambourines as a disturbance of the spirit. He found it significant that, on the whole, only women and effeminate men fell into this this folly. Accordingly, nothing of value could be attributed to music; it was no more than a slave of the sensation of pleasure, which it satisfied much the same way that food and drink did." (Quasten, p. 52)

Aristotle Rhetoric1408a] Employ a connecting particle or for conciseness omit it, but avoid destroying the connection; for instance "having gone and having conversed with him," or, "having gone, I conversed with him."Also the practice of Antimachus is useful, that of describing a thing by the qualities it does not possess; thus, in speaking of the hill Teumessus, he says,

There is a little windswept hill;

for in this way amplification may be carried on ad infinitum. This method may be applied to things good and bad, in whichever way it may be useful.

Poets also make use of this in inventing words,
as a melody "without strings" or "without the lyre"

At this point, it is important to note that the Psalms were written as poems and only later assigned a heading to tell how it might be sung to a tune or played to a tune. All poems, by their nature, are making melody without musical instruments.

Plato Georgias: hohenwald youth, lewis county, instrumental music,

Socrates: Pray then, if we strip any kind of poetry of its melody, its rhythm and its meter, we get mere speeches as the residue, do we not?

Plato in Laws II makes it clear that "melody" is something inherent in the poem which, to be legal, has to come from the Muses or the gods. He condemns those who mix up instruments with the harmony of the song.

Melody was inherent in poetry just as it is inherent in the psalmos Paul demanded that we sing. However, the melody is there all by itself without an instrument in the Greek world. Keep remembering that "melody" is not "harmony."

Strabo Geography 10.3.7

In [10.3.7] Strabo continues, "The accounts which are more remotely related, however, to the present subject, but are wrongly, on account of the identity of the names, brought into the same connection by the historians--I mean those accounts which, although they are called "Curetan History" and "History of the Curetes," just as if they were the history of those Curetes who lived in Aetolia and Acarnania, not only are different from that history, but are more like the accounts of the Satyri, Sileni, Bacchae, and Tityri;

for the Curetes (clergy or priests), like these,
are called
genii or ministers of gods by those who have
handed down to us the
Cretan and the Phrygian traditions,
which are interwoven with certain
sacred rites,
some mystical, the others connected in part
with the rearing of the
child Zeus in Crete and
inpart with the
orgies in honor of the mother of the gods
which are celebrated in Phrygia and in the region of the Trojan Ida.

Strabo Geography 10.3.9

But I must now investigate how it comes about that so many names have been used of one and the same thing, and the theological element contained in their history.
Now this is common both to the Greeks and to the barbarians,
to perform their sacred rites in connection with the relaxation of a festival, these rites being performed sometimes with religious frenzy, sometimes without it; sometimes with music, sometimes not; and sometimes in secret, sometimes openly.
And it is in accordance with the dictates of nature that this should be so, for, in the first place, the relaxation draws the mind away from human occupations and turns the real mind towards that which is divine; and, secondly, the religious frenzy seems to afford a kind of divine inspiration and to be very like that of the soothsayer; and, thirdly, the secrecy with which the sacred rites are concealed induces reverence for the divine,
since it imitates the nature of the divine,
which is to avoid being perceived by our human senses;
and, fourthly, music, which includes dancing as well as rhythm and melody, at the same time,
by the delight it affords and by its artistic beauty, brings us in touch with the divine,
and this for the following reason; for although it has been well said that
human beings then act most like the gods when they are doing good to others,
yet one might better say, when they are happy; and such happiness consists of rejoicing, celebrating festivals, pursuing philosophy, and engaging in music..

Just like Job, Amos Isaiah and Ezekiel, Strabo shows the conflict between music which is rejoicing or celebrating, and doing good to others. Music works because it takes the mind away.

Jesus commanded doing good to others; He did not command music or any kind of worship in a "rejoicing" or charismatic frenzy sense.

The Testimony of the Pharisees

While Jesus condemned the Pharisees for not living up to their preaching, it is a fact that the Pharisees abandoned the Temple which was under political control of the Roman ruler and the high priest who bought his office as highest bidder. The Pharisees moved the synagogue worship away from the temple and therefore away from instrumental music:

Historians tend to explain the disappearance of the Hasideans as a gradual merging with the Pharisees. The Hasideans may also have had a doctrinal influence on the Essenes, an early Jewish sect that flourished in Palestine.

The Pharisees emerged as a party of laymen and scribes in contradistinction to the Sadducees, i.e.,

the party of the high priesthood that had traditionally provided the sole leadership of the Jewish people

The Pharisees were not primarily a political party but a society of scholars and pietists. They enjoyed a large popular following, and in the New Testament they appear as spokesmen for the majority of the population.

Around 100 BC a long struggle ensued as the Pharisees tried to democratize the Jewish religion and remove it from the control of the Temple priests.

The Pharisees asserted that God could and should be worshiped even away from the Temple and outside Jerusalem. To the Pharisees, worship consisted not in bloody sacrifices--the practice of the Temple priests--but in prayer and in the study of God's law. Hence the Pharisees fostered the synagogue as an institution of religious worship, outside and separate from the Temple. (Britannica Members)

By absolute definition, away from the Temple and outside of Jerusalem meant that there would be no instrumental music which was intimately connected to animal sacrifices.

Jesus attended the outer courts of the Temple in order to preach against it and to turn over the "collection plates." He prophesied that the Temple would again be taken down stone by stone. This shows that the Temple and its worship had no validity.

This passage (1 Cor. 13) cannot be fully understood without some knowledge of the attitude toward music taken by Pharisaic Jewry. Explicitly stated here is the primacy of vocal performance over any instrumental music. Implicit is the contempt of all instrumental music, and the emphatic disparagement of 'gong' and cymbals, two of the temple's percussion instruments... Paul, however, denounced their usage on account of their role in the mystery cults, and thus reflected the views of the orthodox Pharisees as well as some ideas of Philo's philosophy." (Interpreter's Dict of the Bible, Music, p. 466).

Jesus did attend the syngogue where there was no real singing and certainly no instrumental music.

The Testimony and Verification of Paul

The firstfruits was the legalistic sacrifice under the law; firstfruits of the lips is the sacrifice of spiritual worship. This reflects the view of Paul who "sings" --

Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach. Hebrews 13:13

For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. Hebrews 13:14
By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is,
fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his name. Hebrews 13:15

But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. Hebrews 13:16

The Pseudepigraphical Psalms of Solomon spiritualizes the instruments as does Paul Click for the document. The Odes of Solomon can be seen by Clicking.

XV. A Psalm. Of Solomon. With a Song.
1 When I was in distress I called upon the name of the Lord,
        I hoped for the help of the God of Jacob and was saved;
2 For the hope and refuge of the poor art Thou, O God.
3 For who, O God, is strong except to give thanks unto Thee in truth?
4 And wherein is a man powerful except in giving thanks to Thy name?
5 A new psalm with song in gladness of heart,
The fruit of the lips with the
well-tuned instrument of the tongue,
The firstfruits of the lips from a pious and righteous heart

The Testimony of Philo

Philo wrote extensively of a Jewish sect which was more like the synagogue than the temple. On Husbandry 79-82. He understood the male and female choruses as mind and sense perception:

For it is right with both mind and sense to render hymns and sing blessings to the Godhead without delay, and tunefully to strike each of our insstruments, that of mind and that of sense perception, in thanksgiving and honor paid to the only Savior.

Philo disparages instrumental in comparison to vocal music:

All the melodious sounds produced by wind and stringed instruments fall as short of the music that comes from nightingales and swans, as a copy and imitation falls short of an original, or a perishable species of an imperishable genus. For we cannot compare the music produced by the human voice with that produced in any other way, since it has no pre-eminent gift of articulation, for which it is prized.


"And indeed though the worshippers bring nothing else, in bringing themselves they offer the best of sacrifices, the full and truly perfect oblation of noble living, as they honor with hymns and thanksgivings their Benefactor and Savior, God, sometimes with the organs of speech, sometimes without tongue or lips,

when within the soul alone their minds recite the tale or utter the cry of praise. These one ear only can apprehend, the ear of God." (Everett Ferguson, A Capella Music, p. 40f)

Philo never mentioned instruments in worship and supports Paul's statement about the melody being in the heart and directed to God:

O Lord and Master, how can one hymn thee? What mouth, what tongue, what else of the instruments of speech, what mind, soul's dominant part, is equal to the task?.

Johannes Quasten, Music and Worship in Pagan andd Christian Antiquity, notes of Philo:

"One cannot truly offer thanks to God as the vast majority of men do, with external effects, consecrated gifts and sacrifices..., but rather with songs of praise and hymns-

not so much as the audible voice sings, but such as are raised and re-echoed by the invisible mind."

Philo saw that the high priest had to lay aside his long flowing robe, set with little bells and colorfully adorned, when he went into the holy of holies. This was an indication that one must not worship God with music and colorful array; owe should rather pour out to him one's soul's blood and offere him one's whole spirit as incense. For

if the soul has opened itself totally in word and deed and is filled with God then the voices of the senses and all other burdensom and hateful noises cease..

"According to what has been said, it can be seen that the doctrine of the 'spiritual sacrifice' not only repudiated bloody sacrifices but also rejected music, particularly instrumental music, as a means of worshipping God. Although the 'spiritual sacrifice' was originally explained in terms of hymns of praise to God's goodness and majesty, its logical development eventually considered singing unsuitalbe for divine worship." p. 54-55

The Testimony of Josephus In Antiquities 7

Josephus translated 2 Samuel 19:35 by writing: "But Barzillai was so desirous to live at home, that he entreated him to excuse him from attendance on him; and said that his age was too great to enjoy the pleasures of a court, since he was fourscore years old, and was therefore making provision for his death and burial: so he desired him to gratify him in this request, and dismiss him;

for he had no relish of his meat, or his drink, by reason of his age;
and that his ears were too much shut up to hear the sound of pipes,
or the melody of other musical instruments,
such as all those that live with kings delight in.

The Testimony of the Church Fathers

The church Fathers who lived in connection with or close to the early Church and its language, uniformly condemn instrumental music in worship and most of it for social feastivals. None of these writers were tainted by the American frontier. None of them hated music. None of them could have had a natural predisposition against music because even infants will dance to music -- it may be seem that they are back in the womb comforted by the heartbeat. The Fathers understood the pagan connection with music and they understood the Bible. It was their conclusion that Paul did not command "instrumental music" as worship:

"If the casual reader of patristic denunciations of musical instruments is struck by their vehemence, the systematic investigator is surprised by another characteristic: their uniformity. The attitude of opposition to instruments was virtually monolithic even though it was shared by men of diverse temperaments and different regional backgrounds, and even though it extended over a span of at least two centuries of changing fortunes for the church. That there were not widespread exceptions to the general position defies credibility. Accordingly, many musicologists, while acknowledging the early church music was predominantly vocal have tried to find evidence that instrumeent s were employed at various times and places. The result of such attempts has been a history of misinterpretations and mistranslations (James McKinnon, The meaning of the Patristic polemic Against Musical Instruments, p. 70 quoted in Bales p. 138)

I have posted some of the "Fathers" here. External "melody" is not a pleasant thing in their minds.

The Testimony of the Catholic Encyclopedia is one of the best resources on songs, singing and instruments. It uniformely sees singing or chanting Biblical Psalms without instruments as the Biblical ideal and goal.

Catholic Encyclopedia Instrumental Music
Catholic Encyclopedia Singing
Catholic Encyclopedia Congregational Singing
Catholic Encyclopedia Ecclesiastical Music No Instruments for the Pope
Catholic Encyclopedia The Mass - Restoration of Levitical Music
Musical Minister - Catholic Precentor - First Heresy

The Testimony of Alfred Edershieim


The Testimony of Medical Science

Some of the Classical writers and church "Fathers" were aware of and commented on the nature of instrumental music which is related to "grinding into powder." External melody includes only stringed instruments. The psallo melody in the heart is a much stronger form of:

Psocho (g5567) pso'-kho; prol. from the same base as 5567; to triturate, i.e. (by anal.) to rub out (kernels from husks with the fingers or hand): - rub. (triturate means to grind to powder. This was the purpose of external melody. It is what Jesus did when He fed Judas sop)

Chemists and Musicologists understand the chemical basis of the "thrill" we experience when we are "abraded" with modern harmony (which is not related to melody). It produces endorphins or a morphine-like drug which produces a "high." That is why music is so addictive and destructive to our children. However, the "high" wears off and we often feel dissapointed on Monday morning. That is why Jesus put worship in the spirit (mind) devoted to truth (His Word) and not into that which appeals to the body.

Conclusions: hohenwald youth, lewis county, instrumental music,

We can take the word of those seeing "psallo" as including instruments by appealing to Arndt/Gingrich, really strange translations or the rare Greek scholar who will allow that a song can be sung with an instrument.

Or we can see that credible translators rendered psallo without mechanical instruments but with the human instrument the majority of scholarship which rejects the psallo argument, the testimony of the Old Testament where "melody" includes the instrument, the literature of the time of Christ which made the instruments figurative of "the human voice and heart," the Dead Seee Scrolls which makes instruments figurative, the testimony of the church Fathers and the history of the church forcenturies.

All the while we should remember that no scholar has a first-century Greek-English or English-Greek lexicon or dictionary. We all define words by how they are used in the Bible and in secular literature. We saw from Old Testament examples that melody with instruments always specifies the kind of instrument. We also saw that such singing (noise) with instruments are symbolic of pollution, prostitution or saying "we ill not listen to the word of God." In the case of David we see the poems of a shepherd who would not try to soothe the sheep with an orchestra and four-part harmony.

Ken Sublett - Comments welcome.

Musical Index to see the Catholic Encyclopedia's evidence.

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