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The New Zealand Evangelist

Church Music

page 257

Church Music.

The end of Church-Music is to relieve the weariness of a long attention; to make the mind more cheerful and composed; and to endear the offices of religion. It should therefore imitate the perfume of the Jewish Tabernacle, and have as little of the composition of common use as possible. There must be no voluntary Maggots, no military Tattoos, no light and Galliardizing notes; nothing that may make the fancy trifling, or raise an improper thought: This would be to profane the service, and bring the playhouse into the Church. Religious harmony must be moving, but noble withal; grave, solemn, and Seraphic : fit for a martyr to play, and an angel to hear. It should be contrived so as to warm the best blood within us, and take hold of the finest part of the affections: to transport us with the Beauty of Holiness; to raise us above the satisfactions of life, and to make us ambitious of the Glories of Heavan; and without doubt if the Morals of the Quire were suitable to the Design of the Music, it were no more than requisite. To come reeling from a tavern, or a worse place, into a Church, is a monstrous incongruity. Such irregular people are much fitter for the exercise of penance, than exultation. The use of them disserves the interest of religion : and is in effect little better than singing the praises of God, through the organ of the Decil.