“Music is the universal language of mankind,” said Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Very young children dance to it. Teens listen to it constantly. Adults create it. Senior adults remember it even as their memories begin to fade.
Music is one of the 8 learning approaches that can be used to communicate with adults, but it may be one of the most infrequently used ones in that group. Because music is a universal language, we should use it more often as we teach God’s Word.
Case in Point
Just a few weeks ago, a Bible study lesson I taught had a singular point: God is our creator – and He knows each of us. I remembered an old Bette Middler song from the 80’s. It was called From a Distance, and its lyrics said that “God is watching us – He’s watching us from a distance.” While I am glad that God’s name was mentioned in a secular song, I realized it was a very deistic song. I downloaded it from iTunes and played it as people arrived for the Bible study. Later in the study, we discussed how off-base the song is theologically. Our God is not just watching us from a distance – He’s personally involved in each of our lives and He knows us, cares for us, and provides for us. He’s very different than the God mentioned in Bette Middler’s song. That’s just one example of how to use music in your Bible study group.
Musically-inclined Group Members
Some of your group members love music. It communicates to them in ways that other methods might not. To appeal to your musical learners, consider doing some of the following:
- Write new lyrics to familiar tunes
- Listen to a song or hymn
- Use a musical instrument as an object lesson
- Provide hymnals and do a “hymn search”
- Sing as a group
- Enlist someone to sing (or a group)