“But it is asked, if human composition in praise to God is offensive to Him, how can we account for the fact that He uses such songs as a channel of the Spirit’s influence in conversion and edification, and for the fact that the hymn-singing Churches are the largest and most numerous… When Israel was famishing for water God spake to Moses, saying, “Speak ye unto the rock before their eyes.” [ed. Numbers 20:8] But instead of speaking to the rock Moses spake to the rebels, and smote the rock. He “did not sanctify God in the eyes of the children of Israel,” but still “the water came forth abundantly and the congregation drank and their cattle.” [ed. Numbers 10:11-12] The fact of the water coming forth and the people drinking to the full was no evidence that God was pleased with what Moses did. We know that He was displeased with His servant, though for the sake of the famishing people He gave drink to the thirsty.”
1. Montgomery, J. Knox. “Objections to the Exclusive Use of the Psalms in Worship” in The Psalms in Worship (1907), Edmonton: Still Waters Revival Books, 1992, page 475.