“Can music be demonic?”
The Bible tells us that “In the beginning…the earth was formless and void,” meaning there was nothing before God spoke it into existence. If there was nothing before God began to speak things into existence, that means there was no music–at least, not the way we know it.
Genesis 4:21 tells us that Jubal was the father of those who played musical instruments. Jubal was a descendent of Cain. If we base the creation of music on humans, then coming from the line of Cain would make all music seem evil, wouldn’t it? I mean, Cain killed his own brother!
The truth is, if we look to human origins for anything, we’re going to find a lot of evil because sin has been present since Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden. In the case of music, calling any music evil based on human origins also indicates that portions of the Bible are tainted by evil–for instance, the Book of Psalms is almost entirely songs and music! I don’t think any of us would say that the Word of God is evil, would we?
The Bible doesn’t explicitly say that God is the creator of music, but we know from creation that God is the creator and author of creativity. Music is a creative activity and can therefore be traced to God!
Now, if God creates something, it is not evil. Humanity, however, being tainted by sin and Satan, can twist what God has created for good into something evil.
With music, lyrics can make a song good or evil. If a song’s lyrics glorify the Lord, that song is not evil–good examples of this include “Under Fire” by Abandon, “Welcome to the Masquerade” by Thousand Foot Krutch and “Background” by Lecrae.
Each of these songs glorifies God either directly or by encouraging us to behave in a manner pleasing to God. Christian music – rock, rap, metal, hymns – all of it is just music with words written by Christians to glorify God and encourage other Christians in worship.
A young man in our youth group is an extremely talented musician; he plays guitar and his dad plays keyboard. This father-and-son team often takes music they like from secular songs and write completely new, God-honoring lyrics for them. I believe that even though the instrumental portion of these songs was originally secular, writing new, God-honoring, heartfelt lyrics creates a new life for the song and allows God to use for good what was intended for evil (Genesis 50:20).
The bottom line is this: Music is not evil, but lyrics can make music evil. Since Christian music has lyrics that seek to honor and glorify God, it can’t by definition be evil or demonic. Demons can quote Scripture, but they don’t seek to honor or glorify God. Christians always seek to glorify God and when we do it through music, I believe God is pleased.
What is your favorite type of Christian music?
And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord (Ephesians 5:18-19).