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Sold out or sellouts?: why I sometimes question Christian music

Let me say first in this post that I think Christian music is fantastic compared to secular music and that I enjoy a broad spectrum of Christian music. I think overall it’s more inspirational than the secular. However, I’ve learned I can’t always depend on Christian artists for doctrine or philosophy of life because when compared to what God’s word says, their lyrics many times fall short. I suspect they may not know better or that it’s sometimes because they, like Lady Gaga, “live for the applause, applause, applause” and are pressured by record executives to compromise for the sake of inflating the stats (record sales, concert tickets, etc.).

singing into microphoneThis has been a trying year for Christian music–not only because sales have gone down, but mainly because artists who portrayed themselves as being sold out to Christ and who sold a lot of music have made big headlines as being sellouts to the world system. Vicky Beeching and Tim Lambesis of As I Lay Dying are just two of the most recent sellouts who come to mind. I admit that I sometimes have to even turn off some Christian music I hear when the lyrics don’t seem to match up with scripture. It may also be a matter of my personal preferences in some cases.



One song that slightly irks me is Jason Gray’s “More Like Falling In Love.” Here’s a sample of the lyrics:

(Verse 1)
Give me rules, I will break them
Show me lines, I will cross them

I need more than a truth to believe
I need a truth that lives, moves and breathes

To sweep me off my feet, it’s gotta be

More like falling in love, Than something to believe in
More like losing my heart, Than giving my allegiance

Caught up, called out, Come take a look at me now
It’s like I’m falling, oh, It’s like I’m falling in love

Love, love, love, Deeper and deeper,
it was love that made me a believer

In more than a name, A faith, a creed
Falling in love with Jesus brought the change in me

Some of it does have an element of truth, but the chorus is what rubs me wrong. It seems to me that falling in love, believing in the Lord, losing your heart, and giving your allegiance are all inseparable, simultaneous things that occur when you find the Lord. Yet the song separates them. Or maybe I’m too critical.

Another song I have objections to is Family Force 5’s “Let It Be Love.” A sample of lyrics follows:



(Verse 1)
I’ve never seen a soul set free
Through an argument
I’ve never seen a hurt get healed
In a protest
But I’ve seen sinners turned to saints
Because of grace
It’s love, love that lights the way
Love that lights the way

Let it be a heart wide open
Bigger than the words we’ve spoken
Let it be a heart for the broken
If we’re gonna light, light
Light the way
Let it be love, let it be love, yeah
Nothin’ but love, nothin’ but love, yeah
Let it be love, let it be love, yeah
It’s love that lights the way

(Verse 2)
It’s not about the stand we take
But the grace we give
It’s not about the name we make
But the life we live
Heard about a King who sat down
Took my place
True love gave His life away
It’s love that lights the way

Regarding verse 1, there are quite a few young ladies who either worked in abortion clinics or were on their way to have an abortion who ended up getting saved when they encountered someone outside of the clinic who graciously and lovingly protested the clinic. Abby Johnson is a perfect example. There may be times where you have to make an argument to highlight weaknesses in the stance of those who oppose the gospel. Love doesn’t mean you never protest or never make an argument. Would a Christian arrested for their faith be expected NOT to make one in court?

And in verse 2, how is it not about the stand we take? When we take a stand on an issue out of our love for God and for the sinners we try to reach, God can use it to save someone. In Ezekiel 22:30, God pleaded with Judah for someone to “stand in the gap” against sin because he didn’t want to destroy them. Ephesians 6 commands us to take a stand against all the wiles (cunning plots and actions) of the devil. God didn’t call us to be the sappy, wimpy, passive Christians this song seems to imply. Is it me or is the Christian music industry caving to some of the same failed ideas that the church has embraced?


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