Dabney's Review of Girardeau on Instrumental Music

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TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
Here is a link to R. L. Dabney's review of J. L. Girardeau's Instrumental Music in the Public Worship of the Church.

I found this quotation remarkable:
Dr. Girardeau is supporting the identical position held by all the early fathers, by all the Presbyterian reformers, by a Chalmers, a Mason, a Breckinridge, a Thornwell, and by a Spurgeon. Why is not the position as respectable in our author as in all this noble galaxy of true Presbyterians? Will the innovators claim that all these great men are so inferior to themselves? The ideal seems to be that the opposition of all these great men to organs arose simply out of their ignorant old-fogyism and lack of culture; while our advocacy of the change is the result of our superior intelligence, learning and refinement.
 

TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
Hello Tyler. Remarkable indeed! Great men who are ignorant old fogeys! The last sentence is so..:think:..humble.
Brett, the last sentence was sarcasm on Dabney's part. He's answering those who were accusing his associates and him of "old-fogeyism" because of their opposition to musical instruments in public worship.
 

ProtestantBankie

Puritan Board Freshman
I read once, or was told, that Dabney designed his own church building so that it would be impossible to get an organ into it?

I also heard that eventually they managed to find a flaw in his design and got one in.
 

Jeri Tanner

Moderator
Staff member
Tyler, I appreciate this. Where does your PCA church stand on the use of musical instruments, if you don't mind my asking?
 

TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
Tyler, I appreciate this. Where does your PCA church stand on the use of musical instruments, if you don't mind my asking?
Our congregation is divided (divided as regards opinion--we are far from hostile toward one another) on the matter. We use a piano in worship, but when our pianist is not present (she has some health issues), we sing a capella (though we have plently of other folks who could play). Generally, the lines are divided identically with the EP issue--those of us who are against the use of uninspired hymns are also against the use of musical instruments.

As regards the session, our teaching elder is unconvinced of EP, and is okay with the use of a piano (though he loves to sing the psalms and prefers singing a capella). Our two ruling elders are a capella EPers.
 

Jeri Tanner

Moderator
Staff member
That's so interesting, thanks. I don't know that any PCA churches in our area sing Psalms at all, and I'm sure do not sing what they sing a capella. I pray the issue will be raised more and more publicly.


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TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
That's so interesting, thanks. I don't know that any PCA churches in our area sing Psalms at all, and I'm sure do not sing what they sing a capella. I pray the issue will be raised more and more publicly.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I'm sorry to hear that. What is the practice at the congregation to which you belong?

I know of a congregation in your area that used to be in the PCA that sings psalms as well as uninspired songs, but it more doctrinal problems than you can shake a stick at (Federal Vision, NPP, etc.).
 

Jeri Tanner

Moderator
Staff member
My congregation is Southern Baptist and we are very far from singing Psalms at this point. The PCA churches I've attended in my area seem to sing mostly or all hymns of one type or another, including RUF style; some use orchestras and some use keyboard and guitar accompaniment. I'm aware of absolutely no Psalm-singing churches anywhere in this part of the state, and only one or two state-wide. Amazing, really. I have a friend who lives in Chattanooga, Presbyterian by conviction but attending a Baptist church. I'll ask her if she's heard of yours.
 
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