Misleading Christian music

I’ve been thinking a lot about music this morning. The subtleties it has. How it can directly and indirectly influence people.

What got me on this is I’ve had a song stuck in my head all morning. It’s one they play on the Christian station. I don’t know the exact title or who sings it but the chorus goes something like “I don’t need the plan in hand. I don’t need the end in sight. All I need to do is follow you and do what you ask me to”

On first glance this sounds reasonable. We don’t need to know God’s exact plan for our lives. We don’t need to know if we’ll be old billionaires when we die or killed in a car wreck tomorrow. We do need to follow and do what God and Jesus asks of us. However, upon deeper contemplation I have a lot of problems with this song.

“I don’t need the plan in hand.” The plan for our lives is the Bible. Not having the plan in hand, how can you follow the plan and do what is asked?

“I don’t need the end in sight.” The end is heaven (we hope). We will all be judged by Jesus. If you aren’t living for that end, what are you living for?

“All I have to do is follow you, and do what you ask me to.” You want to follow Jesus. Great! However, if you aren’t reading the Bible how will you know if you are following what is asked or being deceived by Satan? How will you be able to tell if what you think you’re being asked to do is truly in line with God’s teaching if you don’t have the plan (Bible) in hand?

So if you follow the advice of the song and not read your Bible or live righteously for heaven, you are only deceiving yourself into believing you are following God’s will. We are told to obey God’s word, and not be deceived in many places throughout the Bible. Here are just a few of the more relevant verses which apply to this song.

Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. 1 Corinthians 3:17-19

And it shall be with him, and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, to keep all the words of this law and these statutes, to do them: Deuteronomy 17:18-20

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 15

Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off Jerimiah 31:10

That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour: 2 Peter 3:1-3

Observe and hear all these words which I command thee, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee for ever, when thou doest that which is good and right in the sight of the LORD thy God. Deuteronomy 12:27-29

The LORD shall judge the people: judge me, O LORD, according to my righteousness, and according to mine integrity that is in me. Psalm 7:7-9

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 2 Timothy 3:15-17

This is just one example of misleading, double meanings in songs. You can see how something as seemingly harmless as a so-called Christian song can be very misleading. So while most conservative Christians would know that the majority of modern music is worldly and poor influence, we also need to be cautious about contemporary Christian music. It’s taking influence from worldly music rather than the other way around. Songs with double or hidden meanings and misleading lyrics are increasing.

I’m not saying not to listen to music, just to be wary and careful not to let something like music trip you or lead you astray in your Christian walk. Pay close attention to what music your children are listening to as well as the songs sung in your church. Are they Biblically sound. Do they lead you closer to God’s truth? Or are they worldly and emotional?

Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. 1 Corinthians 15:32-34

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. Colossians 3:15-17

All references are KJV.

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18 Responses

  1. Very good, and I agree.

  2. Great post. I have been questioning myself on how far to go with ‘Christian’ music. If it is not the lyrics, it is the writers and the singers. Thanks for the post.

  3. These kinds of songs make for great discussion about what is really true, what the Bible really says/means, and how we should be living. We are called to be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves, and talking about songs is a great way to practice this.

    I completely agree: Every once in a while we run across a song in church and I turn to my friends and ask, “Since when were we Buddhists?” [smile] We must keep our minds engaged if we are to worship in spirit and truth.

    ~Luke

  4. Very good post…

    I myself am an avid fan of Christian Rock Music … until recently…

    Check this page out on our site that deals with some of the Bands that our youth are listening to in the Christian Music scene.

    http://www.forgenerations.net/music/index.html

    Thank and God Bless you all,
    Jeremy from http://www.forgenerations.net

  5. Jeremy,
    Amazing! We actually agree without criticism 😉

    Have you read (or heard of) the booklet “I Can’t Sing” by Weaverland Publication? It’s available from Christian Light Publications. While this booklet is probably a bit overly harsh on some things, it does give a good overview of what is wrong in all forms of popular music today.

  6. No, haven’t heard of it … Of course we agree on something…. we are both suppose to be Christians right? 🙂

  7. Maaaan, you know there is such thing in the web like search engine, http://google.com if you don’t, go there to understand why this post is bullsh**

  8. Just like the identical comment on the cape dress post, I’d be happy to explain further if you tell what parts you feel are BS.

  9. I’d like to note that the second interpretation of lyrics related here kind of goes overboard. The meaning which you listed first is obviously the intended one, as attested by the fact that you thought of it first. Twisting words like this is a bad idea, especially without going to the source.

    Also, I’m not sure whether Jeremy wrote all the articles on that site. However, all four, including the one about Third Day which contains his name, have several assumptions and a few reversals of apparent meaning. I’m pretty sure that a peer review process of any sort, formal or informal, would find most of them.

    I’ll consider blogging about this myself, even though it is from last year. I see this kind of thing too much, and I honestly feel embarrassed by it. I acknowledge the importance of sanctification and church discipline, but we must also preserve the integrity (accuracy, logic, etc.) of our God-given brains if we expect anyone to listen to us.

  10. Jesdisciple,

    I’m not endorsing things by Jeremy or his site. We had a discussion about various topics of interest to us both. Don’t worry about it being a year or so ago, I don’t mind revisiting topics.

    As per my interpretation of this song, I wrote what I think. If we just take things at face value, we run the risk of shallow thinking. Granted there is also the risk of over analysis. Therefore we need to exercise discretion and discernment because not everything is as it appears which is what I was trying to point out and using this song as an example of possible double speak. I don’t know the song writer or singer so I obviously don’t know their motives or intended interpretation.

  11. Oh, my bad. I took the “agree without criticism” as “I like your stuff too.”

    And I do need to apologize about the “twisting words” phrase; I’m not sure whether I had read any of Jeremy’s writings, but I have no suspicion that you were intentionally deceptive.

    Jeremy’s stuff goes a good bit further, although it’s not necessarily intentionally deceptive either and I admit that he makes good points. I just wish he had sought and considered the reviews of several scholars (pastors, professors, whatever) before publishing, and I’m almost certain he didn’t.

    But I really wish this new online press would find a practical way to actually interview people. I like wikis (e.g., Wikipedia) a lot and they would probably work as part of the solution, but we tend to have questions which reliable sources don’t ask. Until such a solution is found, we *must* qualify unverified ideas; anything less amounts to gossip.

  12. Jesdisciple,
    Apology accepted. I agree that sometimes it is hard to tell fact from opinion on the internet. As for the agreeing without criticism, he had pretty severely criticized several of my other posts that day and therefore surprised me by saying this was a very good post.

  13. Hey everyone, good discussion…it has been awhile since visiting this post … I receive all from everyone mentioned about the information contained on my website. A little explaination might be in order as to why the bands I have chosen are there. All the bands mentioned have some form of occultism presented on their albums. Now bands like Third Day, they are annointed and follow God, but they need to take the design and marketing of their music back into their own hands. This would enable them to avoid all appearance of evil. As far as bands like Flyleaf, or Demon Hunter, well, they openly display oculltic practices and imagery. Michael W. Smith RUNE’s on an album – something new age christians seem to find enjoyable. Some of the info I wrote and some of it came from other sources which were cited. Please do not take this as defensive, even though it does sound liek this. I am willing to remove anything from my site that could be incorrect. I will take all suggesstions and seek the Lord for what to remove or keep. Thanks for the input. Peace to all of you in our Lord and Saviour’s name, Jesus Christ. Amen.

  14. Jeremy,
    Perhaps you should do a post on your site about that if you haven’t already. I don’t keep up with who sings what these days but thanks for the update and clarification.

  15. Jesdisciple,
    Please use Jeremy’s site for any correspondance to him. I am not a message board. Thanks.

  16. Sorry about that. I had trouble finding any contact info and saw no other way.

  17. No big problem. From your second comment, it looked like you finally found it. I hope you two can have some good discussions. It sounds like you are both interested in similar things and have ideas to share with each other.

  18. Yes, I did. Unfortunately, he claims I’m completely missing the point, and I don’t think I’ll get a response about what the point is. I’m pretty sure this is getting blogged now.

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