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Bible Dictionaries

Morrish Bible Dictionary

Music, Musicians, Musical Instruments

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The harp and the organ, or pipe, were in use as early as Genesis 4:21 . Laban, when chiding with Jacob for secretly leaving him, said he would have sent him away "with songs, with tabret, and with harp." Genesis 31:27 . The monuments show that the Egyptians had various musical instruments, the Israelites, therefore, if they had not known their use before going into Egypt, could have learnt it there. When Moses sang the song of triumph at the Red Sea, Miriam answered with a tabret in her hand; and Samuel told Saul that he would meet a company of prophets with a psaltery, a tabret, a pipe, and a harp. 1 Samuel 10:5 .

There must have been with these prophets some knowledge of music, which doubtless under David was further cultivated and devoted to the service of God, their music being intimately connected with temple worship. He had several companies of singers, and players on instruments, which are often mentioned in the Psalms. As these were indited under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we may conclude that this way of celebrating the praises of God was in accordance with the dispensation that then was. Such an exhortation as "Praise him with the psaltery and harp," is beautifully in place in the Psalms; but in the N.T. dispensation it is, "singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;" and "I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also." "They that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth."

In the headings of fifty-five of the Psalms the words occur, "To the chief musician;" the word is natsach, and simply means 'to the chief or the leader,' and may therefore apply as much to the singers as to the musicians. The musical instruments are considered under their various names.


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Bibliography Information
Morrish, George. Entry for 'Music, Musicians, Musical Instruments '. Morrish Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/mbd/m/music-musicians-musical-instruments.html. 1897.

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