Music can be a net that pulls people into theology…
I once had someone ask me if I could do a post series on various artists and whether or not their beliefs line up with truth. I denied the idea because it’s just too vast to study. However, it is important to know where the people we listen to stand on scripture.
The issue is… it isn’t always obvious, at first.
A major issue with a lot of Christian music, not all mind you, is that the lyrics are watered down. The song boosts our ego. It comforts us when we are in pain. It makes us feel good. However, surprisingly, many Christian songs will not teach the true Gospel.
One of my favorite songs done by Hawk Nelson, which recently had the lead singer deny the faith, is a perfect example.
Drops in the Ocean doesn’t talk about repentance. It talks about how Jesus wants us as we are, which is true, but it doesn’t continue that Jesus helps us change. He doesn’t want us to remain sinners. It talks about Jesus’ love for us that forgives, but it doesn’t talk about WHY He forgives. It promises that Jesus is for us and not against us. If we are sinners who have not received Jesus, He is NOT for us. If we do not accept Jesus, we are children of wrath, God’s wrath.
(ESV) Ephesians 2:03, “among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.”
I point this out because some of the valid questions the singer had (which are NOT new questions and either was not answered for him OR he did not seek the answers) are evident in this song. This song doesn’t give an inkling to the questions he had. One being if God is so loving why did He send His Son to die?
Because of sin!
Sin requires sacrifice. Mankind fell and God took the image of man so one Man could become the perfect sacrifice and atonement. Hebrews 9 discusses this. It explains why Jesus became our High Priest and how He is different than the earthly priests who enter the Holy of Holies once a year and give a sacrifice for the people. Jesus’ death ripped the veil and He entered the Holy of Holies and sat on the Mercy Seat! No more is a sacrifice required. He sits in a tabernacle NOT made with human hands. He is our Mediator and Intercessor. Those who are in Christ have this promise!
Something that has been difficult and convicting at the same time is to be more critical of the songs I like. This doesn’t mean I have to stop listening to some, but others such as Bethel, Hillsong, and Elevation Worship I am DONE with because of the false doctrine these churches teach. It’s toxic. It’s comforting to the flesh. A false sense of self-help. Do research, PLEASE!
Another song I was deeply moved by in 2018, Do It Again by Elevation Worship. I really loved the song. But listening to it now, it’s a song about God giving us what we want. We have seen Him move and we believe He will do it again because He hasn’t failed us…yet. The “yet” especially is problematic. Does that mean He can fail us? Scripture doesn’t say He fails us, rather, He does according to His will, and not our own. Will the Lord not move mountains for us? YUP! But not because He has failed us. If it was not clear, I have since given this song up.
(ESV) 1 Peter 4:19, “Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.”
Music can be VERY manipulative. Soothing music that is repetitious is a way to put people in a vulnerable trance, and notice, a number of churches do this. (That doesn’t mean it’s always the case, but something to be aware of.) The song Do It Again that I mentioned, one of the reasons I loved it was its soothing tone.
Now the big one that many are fans of. Please note: I’m not expecting you to immediately be persuaded reading this post. Instead, I just ask for you to consider what you’re listening to, and how that might affect others, even if it does not affect you. Check out this video: Why Our Church Doesn’t Play Hillsong or Bethel
The song Reckless Love is a perfect example of scripture being pulled out of context, and Mike Winger has a great video dissecting the song and whether or not Christians should care about song lyrics. He also covers the background of the song and the song writer’s thoughts on it (which the singer claims God is reckless because He doesn’t give a thought or care for His actions, this is not true. God is self-less, but He is NOT reckless. Everything He does is well thought out and wise.)
Check Out Mike’s Video: Thinking Biblically About The Song Reckless) Mike makes the point that when we sing lyrics we are making a declaration with our mouth. This is what we proclaim to be true. Worship songs can become our theology. They become the resources we turn to when we struggle.
Bethel is a perfect example of music leading to theology, and I recommend hearing the testimonies of people who got out of Bethel. Check out Lindsay Davis’ testimony, she used to be a student. She, like many others, was lured to the teachings of Bethel because the music was so good.
(NIV) John 4:23, “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.”
Are we actually worshipping the Lord in Spirit and truth? Is our music truthful to scripture? Consider the ones creating the music and whether or not their teaching is true because many often seek out the churches/pastors/leaders who produce these songs.
I’ll leave you with what we need to consider regarding Christian music especially.
(NIV) 1 Thessalonians 5:21, “but test them all; hold on to what is good.”
(NIV) 1 John 4:01, “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
Many false teachers, fallen believers, and false prophets wave a banner of “Christian” music that comforts the ears more than it saves the soul.
Community Prayer for July 2020
Monthly Scripture – (NKJ) Psalm 85:08, “I will hear what God the Lord will speak, for He will speak peace to His people and to His saints; but let them not turn back to folly.”