Musing on Music’s Power part 2

Some great comments on this morning’s “music” post led me to this link for The 107 Theses, “A Call for Reformation of Contemporary Christian Music” by Steve Camp. (Thanks Anna! and all the rest of you who took time to share your thoughts!)

Here’s a little taste from the Steve Camp site, he shares this to build up to the fact that CCM is seriously close to being on the downgrade, if not already slipping:

Charles Hadden Spurgeon spent the final four years of his life at war against the trends of early modernism, which he rightly saw as a threat to Biblical Christianity. Spurgeon wanted to warn his flock about the dangers from moving away from the historic positions [of the truth]. ‘Biblical truth is like the pinnacle of a steep, slippery mountain,’ Spurgeon suggested. ‘One step away, and you find yourself on the down-grade. Once a church or individual Christian get on the downgrade,’ Spurgeon said, ‘momentum takes over. Recovery is unusual and only happens when Christians get on the ‘up-line’ through spiritual revival.’ History has vindicated Spurgeon’s warnings about the down-grade. In the early part of the twentieth century the spreading of ‘false doctrine and worldliness’-theological liberalism and modernism-ravaged denominational Christianity throughout the world. Most of the mainline denominations were violently if not fatally altered by these influences. A hundred years later, we are seeing history repeating itself again… ‘False doctrine and worldliness’-the same two influences Spurgeon attacked-always go hand in hand, with worldliness leading the way. Christians today tend to forget that modernism was not first of all a theological agenda but a methodological one. (John F. MacArthur, Jr. Ashamed of the Gospel (Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway, 1993), 21-23, emphasis added.)

And this from the same source:

Os Guinness is “spot on” when saying, “[we have seen a change] from an emphasis on ‘serving God’, to an emphasis on ‘serving the self’ in serving God.” The object of faith is no longer Christ, but our self-esteem; the goal of faith is no longer holiness, but our happiness; and the source of faith is no longer the Scriptures, but our experience. Christian music currently reflects this. We are producing a generation of people that “feel” their God, but do not know their God.

There’s a lot more good thought provoking stuff over there, I encourage you to check it out.

4 thoughts on “Musing on Music’s Power part 2”

  1. In my opinion, any music that honors and worships the Lord should be accepted. No one has the right to say that only one type of music is acceptable to God, how could they know?

    Let me say one thing, I love heavy metal and for the longest time I did not like listening to Christian music, to me, it was boring *yawn* and I always went back to secular music. I am thankful that there is Christian metal now because it ministers to me.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with playing the same style of music as the secular world except there is a positive inspirational message behind it.

    Why not beat the devil at his own game?

    Okay, my two cents.

  2. I think the music issue is symptomatic for a much broader psychological phenomenon. Have you noticed (or maybe not, I have :) ), that a person goes from very permissive towards quite conservative points od view along with getting older? What we once thought acceptable, becomes the opposite. Not always, not everything, but a lot of things. When I was a child, I saw many “wrong” things my parents did (or so I thought then) and promised myself never to be like that towards my own children. But when the reality hits you, you behave exactly like they did, because now you are aware of many premises you had no idea about then.
    There is a period in life when we seek, when we learn and accept, but then comes the ‘conserved’ period of keeping what we have, being satisfied and not willing to change. I fear that, I really do. I am not there yet, though. As long as you are willing to listen to others and change your mind, you are all right and ‘learnable’. When you stop listening, you are out. Remember what Socrates said? “I know that I know nothing” – perfect picture of a learnable mind, opposite to a conserved mind.
    Coming back to music: in my view, it is very personal. As long as it is an individual Christian preference of some musical genre, and never forgetting God, it is OK. In church – not offending others, looking humbly to love one another, finding some common ground, respecting everybody.
    I cannot get enough of Steve Camp’s music. Yet I do not know whether the peole in my church wuld like him as much as I do. And vice versa – they do not expect me to love old hymns and psalms. But we do sing them, to glorify God together.

  3. Check out the second half of this article. The author talks about someone from the outside looking in at Christian music.

    As for Christian rock’s religious message: It is sometimes explicit, aimed at believers or at those ready to hear a Christian message as such. But many of the artists Mr. Beaujon speaks to walk a fine line. Their faith-message, if sincere, is less overt, muffled in feel-good sentiments and vague allusions. They want to appeal to a broader audience–sometimes simply for the sake of commercial success.

    If you’re in there for commercial success, can you really be focused on glorifying God primarily? Should you support someone who’s only motivation is the money that there is to be made? (This is a good challenge for any endeavor, be it blogging, web designing, etc!)

    And this closing comment:

    Mr. Beaujon writes about the event with his usual sense of fairness and curiosity. But he is driven to wonder, when it is over, “whether I’d just driven 750 miles to hear Christian kids get the okay to listen to Eminem.” A good question and even a biblical one: how to be in the world but not of it.

    We need to answer this last part– how are we in but not of if we sound, look, and feel like it?

    If it looks like a duck, sounds like a duck, and quacks like a duck, is it a horse?

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