Back at Christian History, we were working for a while on getting a series of “Christian History Minutes” together for airing on a certain network of Christian radio stations. The deal never went down, but today I stumbled across the small series of “minutes” that I wrote at that point to demonstrate what we might do. Here’s one of those, on one of the greatest composers who ever lived:
God gives musical talent, not to bring fame to the musician, but to reflect glory on the Creator. Nobody knew that better than Johann Sebastian Bach.
I’m Chris Armstrong, editor of Christian History magazine.
We know Bach as one of the most productive geniuses in the history of Western music. He was also a deeply spiritual Christian. Nearly three-fourths of his 1,000 compositions were written for use in worship.
When he started a new piece, he always wrote at the top of the blank page, Jesu Juva. “Jesus, help me.” And when he finished, he wrote Soli Deo Gloria, “To God alone be the glory.”
2 Chronicles 5:13 speaks of temple musicians praising God. In his Bible, next to that verse, Bach wrote these words: “At a reverent performance of music, God is always at hand with his gracious presence.”
These are words worth remembering, as we enjoy the music God gives through his talented people.
For more stories from our spiritual heritage, visit www.christianhistory.net or read Christian History magazine.