“[In these days it is] possible to imagine a fully harmonious and spiritually edifying service of Christian worship where new Christian believers played Palestrina on the indigenous musical instruments of Burkina Faso, where an African American gospel choir led in a chorale of Heinrich Schütz, where white middle-class Presbyterians surged with Christian ecstasy to the beat of a drum, where teenaged believers filled up their iPods with the Robert Shaw Chorale, and where learned Western theologians delighted in a nearly infinite repetition of “God is so good, he’s so good to me.”
That it is possible in these last days—in days of increased cultural self-awareness, cross-cultural contact, intra-cultural antagonism and appreciation—to imagine (if not yet to realize) such a vision means that the miraculous day draws nearer as described by the psalmist millennia ago:
Praise the Lord! … Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with lute and harp! Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe! Praise him with clanging cymbals; praise him with loud clashing cymbals! Let everything that breathes praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!
Or, we might say today, “Praise him with syncopation and on the beat. Praise him with 5-tones (the Thai xylophone), 12-tones (most Western music), 24-tones (Arab music), and all scales in between. Praise him a cappella, with orchestra, and with drum set. Praise him with works of supernal intelligence and greatest simplification. Let everything that breathes praise the Lord! Together.”
From Mark Knoll here: http://www.christianvisionproject.com/2007/12/praise_the_lord.html.