My thoughts on change:
Still not got my FB page back, I might just take my own advice and abandon it lol.
My thoughts on change:
Still not got my FB page back, I might just take my own advice and abandon it lol.
Have you heard of the acronym “HALT” stands for Hungry Angry Lonely Tired? It has consequences on your mind if you are in a place where you are all those things, leaving you vulnerable to relapse into a negative state and initiate a craving reaction… Being in a HALT state also shows that you are not taking care of yourself like you should. Here’s how it affected me the past two weeks.
Sometimes we can be called to do things but we allow the calling to become bigger than the One who called us. As I said, I’ve been overwhelmed with doing stuff, which made me Angry. This stuff was stuff which I should be doing and is important and vital to the continuation of the ministry at my church. However, I’ve been trying so hard that I even wasn’t reading my Bible as much as I should which made me spiritually Hungry and I felt Jesus was becoming jealous of the calling in that I was giving it more time that I was giving Him. So I finally finished what I had to do which was important and time sensitive and then I crashed in an emotionally/physically exhausted way (one night I even stayed up till after 8am doing stuff) because I was very Tired, on day I took off. That is when Jesus revealed the following to me whilst I was talking to Him please continue to read the following which happened last week:
I was sitting having a lovely day off and laying down having a conversation with Jesus on my bed and I noticed a few things different about that day. Firstly, the visions that Jesus shows me regularly came back. Jesus shows me visions and lots of other things regularly but since I was so busy I noticed they stopped, which made me a bit Lonely I thought maybe Jesus wasn’t showing me them because I was moving onto something else, no, I just was soo busy that what I was doing was competing for mental space with Jesus and Jesus was just not willing to compete but when I took a day off and Jesus was no longer in competition I noticed they came back.
Secondly, Jesus opened my eyes to the fact that I had been having nosebleeds for 2 weeks straight, culminating in a rather large one on the day I rested. I noticed it but I didn’t put two and two together to see the correlation between how much stress I was taking on and the nosebleeds. I had been internalizing so much stress and it was coming out as nosebleeds, I didn’t notice till I took a day off that I was not allowing Jesus to take my burdens and it was beginning to damage my health. How much stress does a person have to be under to have nosebleeds every day? Answer, a lot and to be so stressed that you don’t even realise it’s making you ill is dangerous. So again, by letting the calling become bigger than Jesus and taking on things all by myself I was damaging my health.
Anyway, revelations aside I felt like had quite a nice conversation with Jesus. I was feeling really quite tired by the end of the conversation as I had done stupid things like stayed up all night till past 8am in the morning working, so pulling proper all nighters and I was knackered by my day off.
So… I decided I would actually get into bed and lay down. I went to sleep, had a very strange dream and then woke up.
When I woke up, being in a HALT state had initiated a craving reaction and for the life of me I could not stop thinking about sex… I had very naughty thoughts (which I will not expand upon) solidly for a good hour or two about having sex in the control room of a music studio… I’m not even kidding, there was absolutely nothing else in my mind and it was as lucid as if I was there… (I’m definitely going to hide this blog post from my mother) I’m a musician. We are more prone to finding things like that sexy… Don’t judge meeeeeeeee!
I couldn’t believe that I had actually thought such dirtiness just after having quite a nice, jovial conversation with Jesus before my nap.
And then I thought to myself:
“You know what? I’m not as good of a person as I thought I was”
and I shook my head at myself as I admitted my 29 year old humanity…
Normally, I avoid highly sexualised thoughts because firstly it’s a distraction and secondly it’s not good to focus on something that isn’t real. Lastly, there are Biblical reasons that revolve around how we are to conduct our thoughts and the Biblical mandate to not have sex before marriage (see my previous blog post about this)
(Matthew 5:27-28 NLT) “ “You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’  But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”
(James 1:12-15 NLT) “ God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.  And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else.  Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away.  These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.”
(Matthew 15:18-20 NLT) “ But the words you speak come from the heart–that’s what defiles you.  For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander.  These are what defile you. Eating with unwashed hands will never defile you.””
(Romans 16:19 NLT) “ But everyone knows that you are obedient to the Lord. This makes me very happy. I want you to be wise in doing right and to stay innocent of any wrong.”
We read in 2 Timothy 2:22 to also run away from anything that would stimulates “youthful lusts”.
(2 Timothy 2:22 NLT) “ Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts.”
So we really shouldn’t be dwelling on nonsense that will stimulate us in a way that is not holy. Instead we should be focussing on living descent holy lives.
So it got me thinking, how did this happen? It happened because I was spiritually and probably physically hungry. I was angry, lonely in a spiritual and physical sense and I was spiritually and physically tired… This then kick-started an instinctive craving mode to try fill the gap normally occupied by Jesus who nourishes me, keeps me calm, gives me company and renews my strength because I was previously too busy to engage with Jesus.
I admit it, I was not reading my Bible as much as I should, I can’t believe 2 weeks of not paying at much attention to Jesus as I should as well as skipping a few days of Bible reading and my mind went south, literally… lol. My mind was stressed and did not have it’s daily meal of the Word all the time and the word calms me down. So what did my mind then gravitate towards, something that would naturally calm a person down and give some sort of… umm… release? lol. Sex 🙂 you need to read your Bible every day. I read it morning and night. Read it more than you have to the Bible says we are supposed to meditate on the Word all the time. The Word is also food for our souls. My soul was half starved and hungry, no wonder I was thinking crazy things.
Stop making your primary focus on things to do with Jesus or your ministry or everything and start making your focus actually Jesus Christ. Stop focussing primarily on your problems and the people making your problems worse as this made me Angry and look for constructive solutions and make sure you always give Christ supremacy in your thoughts.
We commit them to prayer, my problem was that I was not talking to or thinking about Jesus as much as I should because I was so busy doing the things Jesus asked me to do. This made me Lonely. I then crashed (emotionally) it was only then that I noticed the vacuum in my brain where thoughts about and for Jesus would normally have inhabited. The vacuum was filled with sex, thoughts of sex anyway lol… I needed to pray more to inject my humanity with holiness.
(1 Thessalonians 5:17 NLT) “ Never stop praying.”
(Psalm 127:2 NLT) “ It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones.”
Does what it says on the tin really.
I was Hungry (spiritually starved), Angry (due to the people around me making my task more difficult), Lonely (from lack of interaction with Jesus) and Tired (from over working, I actually ended up in A&E for fatigue related accident, related to how tired I was from doing what I was doing). Apparently, when you are these things as a man you shouldn’t go on the internet…. Seems as though that works for women to! I didn’t go on the internet btw but my mind just went south lol.
On a separate note, I wrote a blog post about issues men have here: 3 Ways The Devil Tempts Men
If it took two weeks of distraction, overwork, then me crashing, for my mind to be in the gutter goodness knows what other people who don’t read their Bible regularly or talk to Jesus regularly all year must be struggling with.
Never Thirsty, ‘When does thinking about a sin become a sin’ Never Thirsty Web site, at: <https://www.neverthirsty.org/bible-qa/qa-archives/question/when-does-thinking-about-a-sin-become-a-sin/> 9 September 2019
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I HAD A VISION YESTERDAY!
I was taken up to heaven and then taken into courtroom in heaven. God the Father was the judge. It was ornate like the Crown Court where the highest seat was reserved for the judge, which was God and there were places for Clerks and there were seats for the Defendant and Prosecution.
In this courtroom I had this sense that I was free but I saw where the Defendant would sit and I saw a young adult male, around my age (I’m 29 so around his early 30’s), sitting with his lawyer. He was in trouble and the court case that was happening in heaven was regarding him and he was talking with his lawyer.
The Defendant, so the person who was being accused, was wearing a dark grey almost black suit, he looked quite nice in it actually, I think he had a black skinny tie on and he was kind of tall. God also showed me that this guy told people he was a Christian. His lawyer was in a similar colour suit but was a bit shorter than the defendant and middle aged and was dressed smarter.
The lawyer was preparing all of the documents to make sure that the Defendant had every chance of a good defence, the lawyers body language suggested that this was crunch time and if this case didn’t win it was going to be hell for the young man.
I was in the audience part on the side of the Defendant, I was free to go where I wanted to but the Defendant had to stay put. Court had not started yet and everyone was not there but for some reason the Defendant had to turn up early with his lawyer. The movements of the Defendant because he was the Defendant were dictated to him because he was accused, so unlike me, he had to go where other people told him to go when they told him to go there.
As I said the court hadn’t started yet, people were moving around, the Defendant was there and only me in the audience, then for some reason the Defendant turned around looked me in the eyes and smiled. I got the feeling like he knew I was going to turn up, he knew I had his back and he knew I cared, which is why he turned around because he was expecting me.
Then something strange happened. I suddenly saw a vision within a vision. In this vision I saw the courtroom floor. Someone had dropped a USED CONDOM on the courtroom floor.
Now this signified several things:
When I was at university when you would walk to university there would be used condoms on the ground because people, who had no regard for themselves and didn’t fear God used to have sex in the alleyways then dump the used condoms. God was showing me that that’s what that situation meant.
The used condom was also evidence. IT WAS EVIDENCE AGAINST THE DEFENDANT!!!!! That was the reason why he was there. He had been sleeping with his girlfriend and God had finally had enough and the Devil was able to come before God and accuse the young man and the young man was now really in trouble. I am guessing the lawyer was either an angel or the Angel of the Lord as in Jesus.
The scary thing about this whole thing was that God revealed to me that this heavenly court case has not happened yet. I WAS ACTUALLY SEEING THE FUTURE!!!
There is somebody out there, around my age, male (obviously) sleeping with your girlfriend and God is about to run out of patience with you.
Please stop, God can see what you are doing. The Devil is laughing every time you sleep with your girlfriend because IT knows that you are digging yourself into a hole. And the Devil cannot wait to meet you in the afterlife. God sends people like me to intercede for you but I cannot pray you out of hell if you’re already there.
Stop it, stop it right now, ask forgiveness of your sins, find some bible believing guys who you can be accountable with, get prayer, discipleship, deliverance whatever you need to do to get right with God but please just stop sleeping with your girlfriend. Sex is for marriage only.
Your actions are irritating God and one day you will not be free.
So, as we know I am egalitarian in that I believe that men and women are equal and they can make equal decisions in marriage etc. Of course, no matter how hard I try, I will never be able to donate sperm and if I ever find that I can, I need to see a doctor… So we can’t always do the same thing but in our humanity we are equal.
I know many people who are complimentarians, this is the idea where the man is the head and the woman is the neck “eugh” anyway… So this stupidness runs deep. I found out the stupidest thing happened, which just explains the stupid of that heterodoxy:
How do some people manage to finish school?..
Does anyone but me see what’s wrong with that scenario? It is of course the logical conclusion to that heterodoxy. Ok sooo there are a MANY things wrong with this scenario. Where do I start, hmmm let’s deal with the whole diminished responsibility thing first. I’m just going to let the Bible do the talking!
So the Bible says that everyone is personally responsibly for her or his sins. We see that individuals suffer for their own sins:
(Ezekiel 18:20 NLT) “ “ The person who sins is the one who will die. … and wicked people will be punished for their own wickedness.”
I don’t know where that woman got her silly views from but it was informed by a false doctrine that was part of another false doctrine regarding women’s unfailing submission to beings equipped with peniii (pronounced peen-eye lol I love the top definition here https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Penii). However, I’m on a roll with the whole sin thing so I won’t be tackling that today (it would literally be around 60k words worth of explanation) let’s carry on ->
In fact, in the Old Testament, not only were individuals responsible for their sins but their sins could also have an effect on their children as well! Looky looky!!!
(Exodus 34:7 NLT) “ I lavish unfailing love to a thousand generations. I forgive iniquity, rebellion, and sin. But I do not excuse the guilty. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children and grandchildren; the entire family is affected–even children in the third and fourth generations.””
(Numbers 14:18 NLT) “ ‘The LORD is slow to anger and filled with unfailing love, forgiving every kind of sin and rebellion. But he does not excuse the guilty. He lays the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected–even children in the third and fourth generations.'”
These verses show that the sin of an individual can affect the other generations that come after them, which is true take the Holocaust for example, to this day Germany is still not allowed to have an army. Also, think about jail time. If someone’s Father does something that means that he goes to jail then the family is affected because the home becomes broken when one parent leaves. What you do affects yourself as well as others.
We also see verses of scripture that show us how we can be judged as accomplices to other people’s sin:
(Luke 12:47-48 NLT) “ “And a servant who knows what the master wants, but isn’t prepared and doesn’t carry out those instructions, will be severely punished.  But someone who does not know, and then does something wrong, will be punished only lightly. When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.”
She knew what her husband was doing was wrong, the man was an idjit (click here for the definition: https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=idjit) but she went along with it anyway.
(Lol flock of penises https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Penii Ok ok ok I’m going to be serious now… * slaps hand * bad Catherine ! naughty!! Lol I’m in such a strange mood right let’s carry on. I think I’m just so unimpressed and angry with that woman I’m struggling to take this seriously. Anyway…)
She knew what her husband was doing was wrong and she just went along with it. Pfft… Women were designed to be the ezer that is the helpmeet. B. Boyd (2013) explains this function quite well:
“…women were not created as afterthoughts, add-ons, or additives, like the kind I put in my truck’s gas tank, to give me a little boost. No, they were an integral part of the deal, from the very beginning of time…God welcomed His first divine daughter in a pretty powerful way: He referred to her by the Hebrew term ezer kenegdo, which translates in English to “helpmeet” or “helpmate”. As the NIV version of the famous verse has it: “The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helpmeet suitable for him” (Genesis 2:18 NIV)…twenty-one times the phrase ezer kenegdo is used throughout Scripture, sixteen of them are used to refer to God himself [examples: Psalm 30:10; 33:20; 115:10; 146:5.] God uses the same name for Eve that he uses for himself, which means that unless God had a massive inferiority complex, he had something more in mind than women as congenital add-on to man…“If Adam must think for, decide for, protect, and provide for the woman, she actually becomes a burden on him – not much help (which is why people in certain cultures just sell or abort their daughters), when you think about it. The kind of help man needs demands full deployment of her strengths, her gifts, and the best she has to offer. His life will change for the better because of what she contributes to his life” (Boyd 2013, pp. 18-20).
If we are not opening up our mouths and telling our husbands when they are wrong (provided that they aren’t the kind of men that will give you a beating for it) then we are in the wrong too. Partly because, as Boyd (2013) shows us, we are failing to fulfil our God ordained purpose to “help”. You are not helping him by not telling him the truth when he is wrong, that’s not faith its gosh darn stupidity. We are missing the mark when we do that and that is the definition of the term used for “sin” in the bible.
Yes pray by all means but open up your mouth, if your faith leads you to a place where you can’t council your husband then
1.) You’re not mature enough to be married
2.) You shouldn’t be married to him, especially as his mistake cost them sooooooooooooooo much money and it was foreseeable.
3.) You need to question the type of Christianity you are practising, if your faith practices are leaving you bound, leading to sin and are not leading to any personal transformation within individuals that practice it then it is an occult form of Christianity.
That kind of inappropriateness leads to “sin” and everybody missing the mark.
The noun חטא (het’) means sin and comes from the identical but differently pronounced verb חטא (hata’), which means to miss a mark, target, goal, objective. The word sin literally means “a missing.” examples include:
Judges 20:16, “Out of all these people 700 choice men were left-handed; each one could sling a stone at a hair and not miss.”
Proverbs 19:2, “…and he who makes haste with his feet errs.” (Abarim Productions 2019, Romans 7)
You don’t confront your husbands sin you, him and your marriage fails and you get to a place where you shouldn’t be and you miss your goals or objectives and this is “sin”. Again, if the kind of Christianity you are practising is making you do that it’s not Christianity at all and it’s heterodoxy. This is the logical conclusion to the Submission theological perspective she was practising it expertly and it led to it’s logical conclusion.
Christianity is all about taking personal responsibility for the things that you have done wrong. That is part of being a mature Christian. Jesus showed us the ultimate example of taking responsibility when He died on the cross for us. If we continue to sin willingly there is no other sacrifice for that.
At the end times we will all have to give account of everything we have done. You will be alone, confronted about what you did and more than likely naked because that is the way that God sees us:
(Matthew 12:36-37 NLT) “ And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak.  The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.””
(Romans 14:12-13 NLT) “ Yes, each of us will give a personal account to God. … Decide instead to live in such a way that you will not cause another believer to stumble and fall.”
(Revelation 20:11-15 NLT) “ And I saw a great white throne and the one sitting on it. The earth and sky fled from his presence, but they found no place to hide.  I saw the dead, both great and small, standing before God’s throne. And the books were opened, including the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to what they had done, as recorded in the books.  The sea gave up its dead, and death and the grave gave up their dead. And all were judged according to their deeds.  Then death and the grave were thrown into the lake of fire. This lake of fire is the second death.  And anyone whose name was not found recorded in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.”
We are all responsible for our actions, just because your husband told you to do it and you are willingly “submitting” to him like a twit doesn’t mean that you are not going to get punished if the thing is wrong especially if you are NOT in a situation where he is going to beat you if you say something. Women whose lives are in danger if they say something to or about their husbands is another issue and I am not talking about them. I am talking about those who are in loving relationships and all they have to do is open up their mouths and say no to their husbands. Those women are going to get themselves into trouble with God if they do not say something.
Besides, Paul said if you do something that you think is wrong then you are sinning:
(Romans 14:23 NLT) “ But if you have doubts about whether or not you should eat something, you are sinning if you go ahead and do it. For you are not following your convictions. If you do anything you believe is not right, you are sinning.”
You will have to give account of your actions to God, God isn’t going to excuse you because your husband told you to do it, God is not interested in what your husband did or told you to do God is interested in what YOU, what did YOU do of your own volition. Why do people keep adding things to the Bible?
Abarim Productions. 2019. ‘Romans 7’ Abarim Productions Web site, at: <http://www.abarim-publications.com/Bible_Commentary/Law_And_Sin.html#.XTCC9IXfv7g> 18 July 2019
Boyd, B. 2013. Let Her Lead: Creating a Better Future for Women in the Church. Colorado: Bonfire Books, LLC.
I know I said I wasn’t going to share any more of my online dating escapades for a while but I was just flabbergasted by this guy’s response, I just can’t believe this:
(I’m the purple bubble)
What is the deal with that?? This is ridiculous… I don’t think that any of the guys that get in contact with me care about my personality lol. I don’t know why I bother lol.
Do all men want that? Is that what Christian guys think when they see me too? Is that what the “kids” is doing these days? lol I don’t know I’m not sexually active, I’m not married lol.
Maybe there’s a church somewhere I can find someone nice who will have the decency to marry me first before asking me if I want to sit on their face, which BY THE WAY seems like a very un-hygienic, practice to me, not something I would want to do personally, also you could probably suffocate a person that way or even break their nose “ouch!” 😦 I’m just saying.
Someone said to me this week they like my smile and they “…just wanna ride…”.
I want someone who will make love to me 😦 not “ride” me like a horse or a rollercoaster *stupes*…. Come on guys, let’s respect women more. Christian or not I don’t think it’s unreasonable for adult women and men to expect a bit more and a bit better from each other really.
That’s the kind of thing you come up against as a Christian young woman trying to search for someone. Without Jesus I think for some of these people, sex genuinely is all they have and they just want something to plug that Jesus shaped hole. You’d be surprised how fulfilling friendship with Jesus is. Jesus is very interesting and surprisingly sweet. See my previous blog post: I Saw #Jesus
Lastly, I couldn’t help but add this one:
Oh dear!………..* shakes head *
P.S. Below is my profile picture for online dating, the high-vis jacket seems to be going down well and a regular turn on but I don’t know why lol. Different I guess?
So yesterday I had some spare time and I was just (wasting it lol) spending it laying on my bed, on top of the covers, pretty much doing nothing but daydreaming, thinking about nothing important really. In fact, what I was thinking about was something rather silly, I was imagining being on one of those chat shows and thinking about what I would say and wear and so on lol.
Then I looked over to the right and I saw Jesus just casually sitting on the other side of the bed. I thought to myself wait a minute…. Jesus just stealthily came into my room, sat next to me on my bed without my knowledge and was listening to me think stupidness lol, nothing particularly holy or inspiring but Jesus just seemed to be happy to chill. At first I noticed and carried on thinking, then the Holy Spirit said to me I should thank Jesus for being there. So I did.
I thought to myself – how long has Jesus been there? Lol. Also, how often does Jesus do that? Lol. Also, I realised that Jesus must be there the whole time. We think we are alone but we’re not.
I thanked Jesus for being there because we know that Jesus “loves” us but sometimes it’s really comforting when Jesus does things to let us know that He “likes” us. You hang with people you can stand lol.
Interestingly – when I thought something that I knew was naughty, Jesus disappeared, I then asked forgiveness for that thought then Jesus reappeared!
My experience showed me that the following scriptures are true:
Psalm 34:7 NLT
For the angel of the LORD is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him.
This is because I realised through my experience that Jesus must there all the time!
1 Thessalonians 5:2 NLT
For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night.
Jesus came into my room stealthily like a thief in the night, without my knowledge, it was just – boom – Jesus is here. My goodness when the rapture happens no one is even going to know what hit them, Jesus will just be not there and then be there!
N.B. I was at the sink this morning, my mind somewhere else again and I saw Jesus again! Standing in front of me, facing me, body angled slightly to the side, looking at me like he was walking past, saw something interesting and had just turned around to look to see what it was.
This is another instalment and perhaps the last for a while of how things are going regarding my search for a mate!
This one is the typical problem I have, being a Christian female. There simply are not enough single, male Christians (who aren’t single for a good reason lol…) around the age of 18-35 in the church globally. So a young adult Christian woman, like myself, who no longer wishes to be single has to go elsewhere. However, guys who aren’t Christians often want things that we Christian young women cannot give.
Observe: (I AM THE PURPLE BUBBLE)
btw just to clarify the person I was speaking to was not a Christian
At this point I’m thinking to myself…wait, did he just ask me if I wanted to sit on his face? I’m guessing he doesn’t mean he wants to give me a piggy back ride or maybe put me on his shoulders so we can go apple picking lol.
So I decided, this isn’t going to work as usual lol so I’m going to witness to him instead so I said:
Now, I must admit that I was a little turned on by that last comment… I’m only human lol
I wrote a song to that effect:
Pretty smooth lol. HOWEVER! I am a Christian and Jesus says that we are not supposed to have sex before marriage so I moved on.
Also – if you read the above carefully you can make a couple of assumptions, seems as though because he thinks I’m hot I get sex AND good times, presumably the ones he thinks are ugly he just sleeps with and doesn’t take them out? Read it again, that’s the assumption I came to?
Anyway… it ended like this:
Can’t win ’em all!
Let’s just corporately commit that guy to prayer……
Anyway, I can definitely see the futility of what I am doing…… I’m trying to not do something with people who want to do that thing with me a lot and expecting them to live in a way that is unnatural to them and they are expecting me to live in a way that is unnatural to me:
Anyhoo, anyone who knows a nice guy who is single and willing to mingle and not penetrate me before marriage (because I have a right to not be penetrated before marriage if I don’t want to….) let me know!
Here’s a whistle stop tour of why Christians sing in church:
A History of Christian Worship
The early church was comprised of Jews who had accepted Jesus as the promised Messiah. Therefore, to understand what contemporary Christian worship is and why it is there, one must look at historical Jewish worship, as this is the foundation that modern Christian worship is based on.
The beginnings of Jewish music are not known, what is not shrouded in mystery is known by what the Bible tells us (Barton 2014, p.7). The book of Psalms is full of many musical directions of how to worship God, however, as there are no sound recordings or musical notation related to the musical directions in the psalms, we can only speculate as to how they would have sounded. The first mention in the Bible of music, a musical instrument and a musician is when a woman called Adah gives birth to her son whom she named Jubal, in Genesis 4:20-22:
“ Adah gave birth to Jabal, who was the first of those who raise livestock and live in tents.  His brother’s name was Jubal, the first of all who play the harp and flute.  Lamech’s other wife, Zillah, gave birth to a son named Tubal-cain. He became an expert in forging tools of bronze and iron. Tubal-cain had a sister named Naamah.” (Genesis 4:20-22 NLT)
Here, we are introduced to three primary professions on earth, apart from tending the Garden of Eden, like Adam. Those who work with livestock (v.20), the musician (v.21) and the craftsman in bronze and iron (v.22) (Barton 2014, p.9).
The Hebrews, (as they were known before they arrived in Israel), were given instructions to worship God in the books of the Law, which, at the time, also involved animal sacrifice. They were told what to sacrifice and when but no specifics was given regarding worship (Williams 2018, Origins of Christian Worship).
There are a few examples describing how worship was lead in the Bible but again we do not know how it sounded. We read early on in the Bible that after leaving Egypt, Miriam, the sister of Moses, took a timbrel and led the other women, who also had timbrels and to praise God in Exodus 15; 20 and 21. In Leviticus, we are introduced to the Shofar, this is a Rams horn which was blown by a priest on feast days. The Shofar is still played today and sounds like a trumpet or horn. In Numbers 10:1-10, we are introduced to another kind of horn, the silver trumpet, like the Shofar, this is not strictly a musical instrument but is also only used by the priests who blew it to signal to the Hewbrew’s that they were moving the camp.
Fast-forward many generations to the book of Samuel we discover that there were prophets who were also musicians. Saul met them following an encounter with Samuel:
“When you arrive at Gibeah of God, where the garrison of the Philistines is located, you will meet a band of prophets coming down from the place of worship. They will be playing a harp, a tambourine, a flute, and a lyre, and they will be prophesying. (1 Samuel 10:5 NLT)
Music was also used for therapeutic reasons, David played the harp for King Saul, conducted under what has become known as the Psalmist anointing, which is “…the power coming from God in the music to drive evil spirits away” (Barton 2014, p.9):
And whenever the tormenting spirit from God troubled Saul, David would play the harp. Then Saul would feel better, and the tormenting spirit would go away. (1 Samuel 16:23 NLT).
Later, once David became king and he brought the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem there was dancing; singing; they were playing lyres; harps; tambourines and other percussive instruments (2 Samuel 6:5) and Rams horn’s were played in 2 Samuel 6.15. David also assigned men from the Levite clans to sing and play music in worship to God in the tabernacle, (which at the time was a tent), 24 hours a day and they did so until his heir and son Solomon built a temple made of brick (1 Chronicles 6:31-32). In fact, the whole of 1 Chronicles 25 also shows us that David appointed entire families from the Levite clans to play music, this would have amounted to several thousand singers and musicians (Barton 2014, p.9). David also appointed a choir leader, who functioned, I imagine, much in the same way as a modern choir leader (1 Chronicles 15:16) (Nehemiah 12:46). When David established the Ark of the Covenant in the Tabernacle, he personally paid for musicians out of his treasury:
“ David appointed the following Levites to lead the people in worship before the Ark of the LORD–to invoke his blessings, to give thanks, and to praise the LORD, the God of Israel.  Asaph, the leader of this group, sounded the cymbals. Second to him was Zechariah, followed by Jeiel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Mattithiah, Eliab, Benaiah, Obed-edom, and Jeiel. They played the harps and lyres.  The priests, Benaiah and Jahaziel, played the trumpets regularly before the Ark of God’s Covenant.” (1 Chronicles 16:4-6 NLT)
Before David’s Tabernacle (tent) was erected worship was quite solemn, as directed by Moses and involved animal sacrifice. In David’s Tabernacle worship livened up. This could have been because David was quite a creative and passionate person. The Bible tells us that he was a poet, harpist and singer, as well as a shepherd, King and warrior. The Bible also tells us that David also appeared to enjoy dancing as well, see 2 Samuel 16:14 (Barton 2014, p.15).
Once, Solomon, David’s son and heir had built the Temple of the Lord, he celebrated this with music, 120 priests playing trumpets and God responded to this by filling the Temple with His presence:
“ And the Levites who were musicians–Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun, and all their sons and brothers–were dressed in fine linen robes and stood at the east side of the altar playing cymbals, lyres, and harps. They were joined by 120 priests who were playing trumpets.  The trumpeters and singers performed together in unison to praise and give thanks to the LORD. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals, and other instruments, they raised their voices and praised the LORD with these words: “He is good! His faithful love endures forever!” At that moment a thick cloud filled the Temple of the LORD.  The priests could not continue their service because of the cloud, for the glorious presence of the LORD filled the Temple of God.” (2 Chronicles 5:12-14 NLT) (Barton 2014, p.9).
The instruments used in the Temple worship in King Solomon’s times were:
Kinnor – A Harp or Lyre – a plucked string instrument probably with 12 strings. It is the national instrument of Israel still today.
Ugav – a flute or shawm – a wood instrument
Tof – a small tambourine-type instrument often played by women
Machalat – The nature of this instrument cannot be established
Shofar – Ram’s horn
Pa’amon – Bells
Chatzotzerah – The Silver trumpet which God told Moses to make and used to signal the onward movement of the Hebrews in the wilderness and at other festival times – blown only by priests.
The tabret (or trimbrel) – was probably a small hand held percussion instrument (Rothmüller 1967) (Barton 2014, p. 16).
Following the destruction of this temple and the exile and return of the Israelites to Israel, worship changed slightly but the basic elements remained the same and there were still many musicians, Ezra records that 128 singers returned from exile with him (Ezra 2:41), later there were 200 women and men singers (Ezra 2:65). Nehemiah records in Nehemiah 7:67 that the singers were so numerous that they built villages around the capital to accommodate them and they were given a quota of food each day (Nehemiah 11:23) (Barton 2014, pp.17-18). What changed was the tone of worship during the exile of the Israelites from their own country to Babylon by the Babylonians. Singing in the synagogues was briefly banned, possibly due to the sorrow of exile as well as the rise of emphasis on the law by the Pharisee’s Some things were added, like the formalized order of public prayers, still used in Synagogues today, was established by the Great Assembly of Jewish leaders. This is known as the synagogue system (Barton 2014, p.19).
Historical Liturgical Synagogue Worship
The following are institutionalised liturgical practices from the synagogue system:
The Cantor was the leader of chanting prayers, psalms and scriptures in the synagogue, which became the dominant form of music in the synagogues for many centuries, following the lifting of the ban on singing in the synagogues. The chant was a liturgical practice that involved a number of syllables being sung to each note of a short melodic line that is repeated throughout the passage being read/sung. The cantor would take contemporaneous melodic patters or compose his own melodies. Chanting of Psalms was often done antiphonally with two choirs groups to lead the congregation. Rabbis did not allow women to sing, so all music was male led by men and boys and chanting was monophonic. The scales differed depending on the spatio-temporal location of the synagogue as the local folk music culture often influenced the Cantor’s musical creations (Barton 2014, p.21).
In the Cantillation the cantor or leader singer of a synagogue sings the declamatory form of the weekly text of the Torah, and the Prophets (Nevi’im) using pre-existing musical phrases. The musical phrases are chosen according to the text and book of the Bible being cantillated. There is no rhythm as different musical motives are combined together. Although there is reason to believe that cantillation goes back as far as Ezra in the Bible times – about 2,500 years ago – most melodies used today are no older that about the 15th or 16th century (Rubin and Baron 2006, pp.67-69) (Barton 2014, pp.21-22).
Jewish Liturgical Modes
A set of musical modes are called ‘Nusach’ which can refer either to a set of modes, melodies and also a set text or prayer. These modes or melodies link the prayer to a time of year or day and also indicate what prayer is to be sing or recited. These melodies became standardized, as did the prayers associated with the melodies. The Three main modes are: Ahavah Rabbah, Magein Avot and Adonai Malach. Today they are improvised from time to time) (Barton 2014, p.22).
The prayers of the Synagogues were chanted usually led by a Cantor and a male choir (if available). The Cantors usually sang in a florid and melodious style that was either of their own devising (before the modes became formalized) or influence by the local culture’s melodic lines. After the formalizing of the prayers the following forms emerged and remain until this day in the modern synagogues:
Piyyut: – a Jewish liturgical poem that is sung, chanted or spoken. A lot of Piyytim are poetic in character and often follow the order of an acrostic poem using the Hebrew Alphabet in order at the beginning of each line.
Zemiros: Jewish Hymns sung in Hebrew, Aramaic, Yiddish or Ladino, sung at holidays, the Shabbat meal on Fridays or any other day.
Nigun: religious songs sung by groups that involve voice and with no formal words; syllables such as bim-bim-bam or ai-ai-ai are sung.
Pizmonim: Traditional Jewish songs associated with Middle Eastern Sephardic Jews – but are also among the North African and Mizrahi Jews. Texts may come from the Old Testament or by poets. They are composed to praise God and contain traditional teaching. They are often sung at religious rituals or festivities such as circumcisions, weddings Bar Mitzvahs or other ceremonies.
Baqashot: a collection of songs and prayers sung by Sephardic Jewish communities during Shabbat, but also may be recited during the long weeks of winter) (Barton 2014, pp.22-23).
That’s all folks!
Barton, B. 2014. The Music of the Jews: An Overview. Fellowship Diploma dissertation. National College of Music, London.
Rothmüller, A. M. 1967. The Music of the Jews; an Historical Appreciation. South Brunswick: T. Yoseloff.
Rubin, E. and J. H. Baron. 2006. Music in Jewish History and Culture. Sterling Heights. MI: Harmonie Park.
Williams, B. ‘Origins of Christian Worship’ Academia Web site, at: <https://www.academia.edu/26562401/Origins_of_Christian_Worship > 15 October 2018