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comment on christian rock...

Started by snapdragon_is, April 23, 2004, 08:27:55 AM

Previous topic - Next topic

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snapdragon_is

hello all....i have been sitting here reading a conversation from a few months ago about that age old question...what is and is not ok in christian music. do you mind if i get on a tiny soap box for awhile?  :)
i belive god has called many differant people to many differant types of music. all music is not for everyone. there are hymns, balads, contemporary, rock, hard rock, rap- core....and i could go on and on. i guess for me...i see no definition between them. there is a clear definition of music  style but all of these bands are in the "christian" genere and it iritates me to see other chrsitians picking them apart. as for me i pray for them. they need our prayers not for us to judge. we may not agree with what they are saying but they are out there feeling like outcasts in a community that should be associated with love. i am not saying that you should go out there and buy music that you dont agree with but relize that somewhere, somehow, god can and will use them. i have heard too many stories of bands that are ex-communicated because they dont fit that norm and are forced to be secular to make it. music is art, expression, and a way of praiseing our lord. it is a gift god has given to us. i plead with you....pray for these bands, for these kids that are trying to find their voice. love them for thier stand they are aking and because they are your brothers and sisters.

Judy McKenna

I don't mind your "soapbox" at all snapdragon.. (your name makes me smile :D).

Personally, Christian rock isn't for me....then again, what I prefer may not be for you.  I try and block the "rock" out and try and listen to what the words are saying. 

... Judy
"I am too blessed to be stressed".

snapdragon_is

thanks for the reply and i am glad my name makes you smile! ;D
i know and understand where you are cmoing from because i also come from there in a way also. i was raised ina very christian home. my dad is a pastor and kept my reigns very tight until i could figure out for myself what i belived. the more i read into the bible the more i saw that most situations in life are grey areas. jesus doesnt just come out and say "dont listen to rock music" i think it is just more of a thing that god shows you. it is our free will. we like soem things and we dont like others. i like many many types of music.i dont see this as wrong. if i felt god telling me it was...i wouldnt listen too it. and i will not go and tell someone..." dont listen to that cause its not chrisitan" thats the holy spirits job. but i do feel called to just remind people to love. i have been reading matthew again and love just keeps poping out. love your neighbors, love your enemy...god just wants us to love people. it is hard but so fullfuilling! again...thanks for the reply. it is good to know i have a kindred spirit out there!

Sonifo

QuoteBy snapdragon~i have heard too many stories of bands that are ex-communicated because they dont fit that norm and are forced to be secular to make it. music is art, expression, and a way of praiseing our lord. it is a gift god has given to us. i plead with you

The only thing that concerns me is the words.  Are they playing their music for God?  If so then it is a good thing.  If they are playing if for themselves then I will not listen to it. 

I love most all music.  The hard stuff gets on my last nerve when I have 2 little ones running and screaming about the house and the boys talking. It can be a bit upnerving for me.

nards656

Hey, snapdragon!  Good to have you on here, and I like your comments - even though I personally take a slightly different position. 

It is sometimes easy to condemn bands, I agree with you.  I don't condemn bands for their musical style at all - although "Christian Death Metal" is somewhat oxymoronic - but I DO critique their expression of Christ pretty harshly.  My position is this - if you are a Christian and your music is being sold in Christian stores as Christian music, it doggone well better have a Christian message of some type.  I'll leave that definition pretty open, because I know God has used "crossover" songs to attract non-Christians to Christian artists and allow their music to reach places it wouldn't otherwise. 

Now, if a Christian artist makes a secular album and ADMITS it is a secular album, promotes it through secular channels, etc., I've got a different line of critique that I look at.  The questions there become - does the secular music stand up to God's standards for Christians?  Does the music in any way fulfill the Great Commission, or is it simply part of some corporate scheme to get rich and USE the artist?  WHY did the artist make a secular album, etc... 

Probably the best part of your discussion is your recommendation to pray for these guys.  That's where we "listeners" let most of the Christian artists down.  We criticize, inspect, and insult and never offer the slightest prayer.  Well said. 

The questions are not easy.  I think the biggest disagreement I might have with you is that I don't give tacit support to an artist just because they are currently being promoted as a Christian artist.  I like to see them really promoting Jesus Christ.  Sometimes, that is a corporate (music industry) mistake.  Evanescence is a perfect example of a huge misunderstanding that the Christian music industry made.  If you are not familiar with that fiasco, I'll explain it. 

You say some things that make me think you've been surrounded by "rock music is evil" themes.  I've been there many years, and I understand.  I disagree with that philosophy just like you do.  I think there have been so many different viewpoints about this - all of them probably wrong - that mine is of no consequence.  That said, I have found that, as many Christians grow stronger and mature more, their musical tastes usually change somewhat, and they become more and more conscious of what they are listening too.  That doesn't make Thousand Foot Krutch, Tait, Kutless, Skillet, Disciple or any of those guys bad - I love em! - it just means that some Christians may feel that music "connects" too strongly with a "worldly" lifestyle that they are trying to leave behind. 

One thing you say that I really noticed - "i dont see this as wrong. if i felt god telling me it was...i wouldnt listen too it."  Just curious - have you ever tried a "musical fast" just to make sure your music hasn't become more important than what God says?  I've tried it, and I've found that the music is usually much stronger than I thought.  Take a three day period and turn off the radio, the CD player, and the music on TV - whatever you normally listen to, whether it's Christian or secular.  Even one day is hard.  I usually start making excuses about two hours in.  In all my years as a Christian, keeping my love for loud guitars and drums from getting between me and God has probably been the second or third biggest struggle.  I love the stuff.  I'll make up all sorts of excuses about how "I'm strong; it won't bother me" and all that to crank up the Motley Crue or the Guns and Roses.  Yep, I've been there, done that.  (If you don't know those old bands, insert the words Godsmack and Metallica - they fit as well).   

It's harder to walk away from sin than we want to admit, isn't it???  :)
I survived open heart surgery.... :)

Check out my blog at www.bernardshuford.com.

Lee

May 14, 2005, 06:25:41 AM #5 Last Edit: May 14, 2005, 06:27:13 AM by Lee
I believe it comes down one basic issue.

Does the music Glorify God ?
We are called to glorify God in all that we do. This can be done through any kind of music. Music has the unique ability to touch many people in many different ways and if an artist is using their music to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ then I don't see how this could not be pleasing to God.

I think we have to be careful not to be too legalist and not focus on the how but on the What. God can use any tool He wants to bring someone to Him. So I think we have to be careful not to think we know more than God.

At ChristianMusicianRadio.com we work with a lot of different artist that play many different genres of music. One thing I look for is their love for the Lord. We play quite a bit of rock and I can tell you that these artist have dedicated their lives to spreading the Gospel. They are out playing anywhere they can find an audience. One independent group who is very popular on our station right now is Unsed. They found that local churches didn't want them to play because of their style of music. So they felt God calling them to play in local bars. They play the exact same songs they would play in church but in front of this secular group.

As a result they are reaching people that would never go into a church and they have had a number of people whos lives have been changed by the fact that they are there to witness to people in their enviroment. How could this not be pleasing to God ?

Lee

Al Moak

I'm probably getting in way deeper than I come anywhere near realizing, but, being opinionated like I am, that won't stop me!  I look at what God has made in nature.  I see symetry, harmonius blending of color and shape - along with the emotions (feelings) such things engender.  These all reflect the Creator's aim in producing them.  I tend to feel, then, that Christian artists - in any medium - can't do better than to reflect the same symetry, color, and harmony (beauty).  But rock, heavy metal, etc. don't reflect that beauty.  Instead, often, they reflect the so-called "reality" of nonbeauty.  Does that testify to the true Creator-God?  I think not.

What about these things?  Do they make any sense?  Hmm?

Judy McKenna

I'm pretty sensitive when it comes to listening to radio stations.  If I hear 4 letter words, then the station gets changed.  Believe it - I've even heard these words on what was supposed to be "Christian radio".

I didn't let it go un noticed either - I wrote the station and complained!  A letter was received back, with apologies, and the station manager was fired!

Now, you expect to hear decent music at church - well, yesterday, our music was the worst ever!  We even had several "walk out"!

I don't mind drums - if they are suttle....background - BUT, what we had to endure yesterday, was just awful.  Several have complained...so we'll see what happens next week.

We are trying to encourage new members to join....this is no way to encourage...is it??

I'd love to hear your opinion on this.

- Judy
"I am too blessed to be stressed".

karmat

Quote from: Al Moak on May 23, 2005, 08:03:39 AM
I'm probably getting in way deeper than I come anywhere near realizing, but, being opinionated like I am, that won't stop me! I look at what God has made in nature. I see symetry, harmonius blending of color and shape - along with the emotions (feelings) such things engender. These all reflect the Creator's aim in producing them. I tend to feel, then, that Christian artists - in any medium - can't do better than to reflect the same symetry, color, and harmony (beauty). But rock, heavy metal, etc. don't reflect that beauty. Instead, often, they reflect the so-called "reality" of nonbeauty. Does that testify to the true Creator-God? I think not.

What about these things? Do they make any sense? Hmm?

While there is rock and hard rock that utilizes disharmony, I would be reluctant to group it all into one big group and throw it out.

Using your definition, new age/transcendental music would be perfectly acceptable to worship with, then wouldn't it?  I think what it boils down to is the heart of the musician, and thus the heart of the music.

I find it interesting that Judy brings up the drums.  I know a lot of people that criticize rock music (not you Judy, your statement just reminded me of it), that refuse to believe that "rock-type" music could be Godly because it has drums.  Yet, Southern Gospel groups rely heavily on percussion. 

It is a sticky subject, to be sure, but to make general statements and broad maxims tends to get me in trouble more than it helps resolve anything, I have found.

nards656

Drums are the target and cause of more musical misunderstandings than anything else in music.  This is because, without exception, the beat defines the style of music.  Rock is characterized by syncopated, off-beat, driving, dominant rhythms. Country has a "back beat", laid back "support" type rhythm, with the melody being a more important feature.  Southern gospel sticks to this format a lot.  As a result, if you like one of these styles, you possibly don't like the other, and HOW the drums are played is often the deciding factor. 

Personal taste is really what decides whether we "support" a certain style of music in church or not, even though we may not realize that.  The Bible doesn't discuss musical styles as we know them today, but we can ALL find ways to defend our preferences with some section or another of the Bible. 

What we must come to grips with is the question - am I following God as closely as possible when I choose this particular path (musical style or preference).   
I survived open heart surgery.... :)

Check out my blog at www.bernardshuford.com.

Oldiesmann

I never have understood the whole "rock is evil" thing. I don't care if I like the music or not - it's all about the message. Over the years there have been many debates about whether or not certain bands are Christian (mainly involving Creed or Chevelle) - I don't get involved with these debates because I don't care. If you have to debate it, then there's no point in supporting the artist.

Here's a clip from one of my favorite songs, "Undying" by Demon Hunter:

QuoteTearing through these days I find the tolerance to strive and push on
I know what lies beyond this life for me is already won
No one can take away the blood that covers over my fall
Without the blood of perfect life I know I'm nothing at all
So now I reign forever hallowed in eternity's hand
No man can shake me from the everlasting ground that I stand

This band has a rather unique sound - screaming the lyrics and singing the chorus.

I'm glad to know I'm not the only one here who's into Christian rock :)
The Oldiesmann
Forum Guru
I've sinned greatly, but Christ's for real, baby, it's a wonder He saved me and just didn't hate me, so won't you tell Him 'Save me!' and please stand up?... - J. Jackson (http://www.apologetix.com for more info).

Pat

Hi John...

First of all, Welcome to Christian Photographers! 

I guess my problem with the term "Christian Rock" is the two words!  They seem completely opposite to each other.  I did a search on the origins of "rock" and I guess I don't think that it has much to do with Christianity.

But to each his own.  :)


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