History and Development of Christian Music
Christian music dates back to the biblical era. And throughout history, Christians have used music to praise, worship and give thanks to God. Christian music has been a critical aspect in shaping the Christian culture and their unique insight into faith. The first song in the bible is the song of Moses and Miriam as seen in the book of Exodus when the children of Israelites sang great praise proclaiming the greatness and power of God for delivering them out of Israel to the land of Egypt. The book of psalms is solely dedicated to telling and declaring God’s goodness and mercy.
Before the 1960s, Christian music was mostly based on hymns and organs. The music mainly reflected the psalms, repeating and picking from scriptures and talking of the greatness of God. Some of the greatest and popular music during this period were simple scriptural words well known to the congregation and accompanied by beautiful simple pub tunes.
Beginning in the late 1960s, Christian music began undergoing a great deal of revolution. And for the next thirty years, Christian music would progressively evolve and develop profoundly. Traditional elements such as pipe organs and drums have been taken over by electric instruments like guitar and pianos. Churches no longer use the conventional scripted hymnals but instead have adopted modern, lyrical music that relates to the world today telling of a God his power and control over our lives in this current world. Also, Christian music is no longer limited to the churches and has vastly spread to radio stations, Tv, concerts, festivals and rallies. Christian music can also be described as more interesting since it comes in varying tastes and styles, including rock, rap, gospel, pop, metal, among others.
Today, Christian music has grown to the level of owning dozens of videos shows, radio and TV stations, publications, awards, and countless websites. But this did not transpire overnight. It has been a slow and gradual process over the years. It all began when artists started producing Christian music which spoke of God in relation to the current world. In the initial years, artists who made music that was deemed contemporary were castigated, and their music even burned from some churches. A plethora of Christian music produced between the 80s and the 90s prompted a lot of protests. Some of the greatest hits that emerged during this period include the likes of “Amazing Grace”, “Oceans,” “Be Thou My Vision,” “God of wonder” to name a few.
Today, Christian music seeks to reach to every soul in a way that is easy to understand, feel, and relate. With the increasing challenges in life in modern times, people are seeking assurance that a mightier being is in control even in times of crises. And as times changes, so do does the face of Christian music.