Who can tell me--and trust me, I know all the hermeneutical arguments--how "instrumental worship" became such an important issue? (Note to blog readers who aren't from Churches of Christ: this is about an intramural discussion that won't make sense to you without a lot of explaining. Every denomination has their own equivalent internecine issues!) Even if a person felt like anything other than pure, unadulterated, nonclapping a cappella music was wrong, how did they then come to the unbelievable conclusion that this issue determined whether or not someone really was a follower of Christ? Do you have to be RIGHT about everything in order to be on the Way? Don't we all have failures and blind spots? To me those old hermeneutical guidelines are misguided. They were based on a reading of scripture that is more blueprint than narrative. I have no interest in being "anti-instrument." God is obviously blessing churches through instrumental worship (among other things). But there is a place, it seems to me, for being "pro-a-cappella." A cappella singing has clearly blessed the church for a long (like maybe 2000 years!) time. Can we ever get to a place where we're comfortable with this as a part of our heritage without making it central to our identity? Can we see it as a blessing to the larger family of faith (that helps keep singing alive and vibrant) without condemning the larger family that doesn't follow along? Can we celebrate what God's doing through the outbreak of contemporary Christian music without feeling embarrassed about our relatively unique assemblies? Can we ever really own up to the truth of words we sing like: "My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus' blood and righteousness"?