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HolyGround >> Jesus wants to give you a hug?


3/7/11 1:00 PM
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Grakman
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 Jesus Just Wants to Give You a Hug?
 
Over thirty years ago, the great philosopher Paul McCartney asked, "What's wrong with silly love songs?"  Having given this over three decades of serious consideration (OK, at least several months), I have Sir McCartney's answer. 
 
It depends.
 
If you want to fill the world with silly love songs, there's nothing wrong with that.  But if you want to fill the church with them, I say, "Stop it!"
 
Tune into your "get you through your day" Christian music station and you will hear grown men, whining like love sick puppies, "Nothing else can take your place, or feel the warmth of your embrace."  Who are they singing to? The One who holds the universe together by the power of His word, or a chick?
 
Take the Quiz
Here are six phrases from six contemporary songs.  Can you pick which phrases belong to secular songs and which to the sacred?
 
1. All I need to do is just be me, being in love with you.
2. My world stops spinning round, without you.3. I never want to leave; I want to stay in your warm embrace.4. I'm lost in love.5. Now and forever, together and all that I feel, here's my love for you.6. You say you love me just as I am. The first three are from a popular Christian band called Big Daddy Weave, the second half are from Air Supply.  
More and more of our Christian music is sounding one note: Jesus loves you soooooo much.  Do I doubt for a second that Jesus loves His children? Nope, but it depends on what your definition of "love" is.
 
God "agape" loves His children.  Agape love is not an emotions based, warm and fuzzy kind of love.  Agape love is a self sacrificing, "I will help you despite how I feel" love.
 
William Tyndale was the first translator to use the word "love" for agape.  Prior to the 16th century, the word "charity" best described agape.  Leaving that debate aside, since Tyndale's time, the English definition for love has expanded.  Our modern day use of love ranges from a love for an object to physical love/sex (eros love).  I love that new car.  I love that girl.  I love that God.  That God loves me.
 
Not only do we use "love" in romantic ways to sing about God, we have added other romantic phrases to our Christian music repertoire: hold me, embrace me, feel you, need you.  This criticism is not new, in fact, it has existed since Godly men began endeavoring to sing anything but the Psalms.
 
John Wesley considered an "amatory phrase" to be language that was more feelings based love than self-sacrificing agape love.  John deleted "Jesus, Lover of My Soul" from one of his brother Charles' collections because it was too romantic sounding.
 
Amatory Phrasing
Not only are musicians guilty of writing amatory phrases, but they are singing with amatory phrasing.  Christian men sing with such romantic longing and neediness it makes me want to scream, "Man up!"
 
Christian women are singing with such throaty breathiness you would think they had just run from their home to the studio.  To whom exactly are they singing? Brad Pitt or the Savior?
 
There are two consequences to this "Jesus is my boyfriend/girlfriend" music.  Needy, emotional women continue to need more counseling, self help books and conferences where they can spread their wings and soar.  Men simply are not showing up for church.  It is my belief they simply can't stand the mood manipulating worship times designed to help them "feel the Lord's embrace."
 
Musical Mermaids
Without theology in music, we are offering fluff that will not comfort when bridges collapse and test reports are negative.  Songwriters could provide true hope if they would write about the sovereignty of God rather than crying about "how safe I feel when Jesus is holding me."
 
Charles Spurgeon had the same criticism of "Hymns for Heart and Voice" published in 1855.  He condemned the hymns as being "little better than mermaids, nice to look at but dangerous because they cannot deliver what they promise."
 
Is there anything wrong with being reminded that our God is our help from ages past?  Of course not, the Psalms are loaded with promises of God's comfort.  But unlike the Psalms (and theology based hymns), contemporary music is void of the reason why we should not worry.  We do not worry because someone purrs that we shouldn't fret, but because God is our shelter in the stormy blast and our eternal home.  Our comfort comes from knowledge, not caterwauling.
 
If you enjoy a silly love song now and then, knock yourself out.  But leave them where they belong, in the world or in the bedroom, not in the church.
 
 
*link http://www.worldviewweekend.com/worldview-times/article.php?articleid=2749
3/7/11 3:37 PM
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gord96
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haha great post! Voted up! I can't even tell you how much I agree with this article. Infinity times infinity would be in-sufficient to describe how much. I would rather not go to church then attend a service and see the type of worship described above. Thank God I found a quiet little Anglican church that sings 2 quick hymns and that's it each morning liturgy.
3/7/11 6:43 PM
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Ridgeback
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 A good deal of CC music is just gay songs men sing to Jesus.  
3/7/11 6:56 PM
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Grakman
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Ridgeback -  A good deal of CC music is just gay songs men sing to Jesus.  

 
3/7/11 9:17 PM
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TheStewedOwl
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Agreed. It's just poor theology and vocal posturing.

If I was programming a "Contemporary Christian" station, the playlist would run something like:

The Fourth Man in the Fire by Johnny Cash

Spirit in the Sky - Norman Greenbaum

The Incarnation - Sufjian Stevens

Amazing Grace by the Black Watch Regiment Pipers

Whiskey or God by Dale Watson

Redemption by Johnny Cash

Live Forever by Billy Joe Shaver

Catholic Boy by Jim Carroll

Why Me Lord by Johnny Cash

Oh Come Oh Come Emmanuel by Randy Granger

The Man Comes Around by Johnny Cash (bitchin' song, even if I'm not a premillenialist!)

I'd be fired by the station managment within the first hour, but hey.

Any other suggestions from the Holyground?
3/8/11 11:01 AM
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Lahi
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Speaking in Tongues by Greg Brown

I believe in You by Bob Dylan

Ring Them Bells by Dylan

When He Offers His Hand by Townes Van Zandt

God is God by Joan Baez

Jerusalem by Steve Earle

They Killed Him by Kris Kristofferson
3/8/11 11:26 AM
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Lahi
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My Jesus by Todd Agnew
3/8/11 11:28 AM
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inlikeflynn
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Ridgeback -  A good deal of CC music is just gay songs men sing to Jesus.  



LOL, so true. I can't stand the majority of the praise music sung at my church.
3/8/11 11:31 AM
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Lahi
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Which Jesus do you follow?
Which Jesus do you serve?
If Ephesians says to imitate Christ
Then why do you look so much like the world?

Cause my Jesus bled and died
He spent His time with thieves and liars
He loved the poor and accosted the arrogant
So which one do you want to be?

Blessed are the poor in spirit
Or do we pray to be blessed with the wealth of this land
Blessed are they that hunger and thirst for righteousness
Or do we ache for another taste of this world of shifting sand

Cause my Jesus bled and died for my sins
He spent His time with thieves and sluts and liars
He loved the poor and accosted the rich
So which one do you want to be?

Who is this that you follow
This picture of the American dream
If Jesus was here would you walk right by on the other side or fall down and worship at His holy feet

Pretty blue eyes and curly brown hair and a clear complexion
Is how you see Him as He dies for Your sins
But the Word says He was battered and scarred
Or did you miss that part
Sometimes I doubt we'd recognize Him

Cause my Jesus bled and died
He spent His time with thieves and the least of these
He loved the poor and accosted the comfortable
So which one do you want to be?

Cause my Jesus would never be accepted in my church
The blood and dirt on His feet would stain the carpet
But He reaches for the hurting and despised the proud
I think He'd prefer Beale St. to the stained glass crowd
And I know that He can hear me if I cry out loud

I want to be like my Jesus!
I want to be like my Jesus!

Not a posterchild for American prosperity, but like my Jesus
You see I'm tired of living for success and popularity
I want to be like my Jesus but I'm not sure what that means to be like You Jesus
Cause You said to live like You, love like You but then You died for me
Can I be like You Jesus?
I want to be like my Jesus
3/9/11 10:23 AM
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DyingBreed
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Klove baby! lol


i prefer strength songs as well myself. there is nothing wrong with expressing your love for Jesus, but you are right, its like that is all we hear anymore, when there is a TON of other attributes to sing about.


kinda like some of these preachers who, EVERY time you wee them, they are preaching fluff and hype like "your time is NOW" or "your breakthrough is NOW" as if everyone somehow at the same time will have 2011 as their year of abundance.


proclaiming peace when there is no peace kinda thing.


no balance folks, no balance
3/9/11 11:41 AM
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RoidsGracie
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 There was actually a South Park episode about this. In it, the characters discovered you could take a typical soft rock son and just replace all the nouns with Jesus and it would sound like your typical CC song.
3/9/11 11:46 PM
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Ridgeback
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3/19/11 12:55 PM
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the rooster
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Psa 42:1 As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.

What pansy wrote this amorous love song? The "hart" a female deer?? He "pants" after God...please.

Oh wait, this was the warrior king David.

We should love the Lord with all our Heart, Soul and Mind. That includes our emotions.

And it was Jesus who described His people as His bride, and He was the groom.

These examples are not rooted in eros love but in a deep, spiritual, intimate oneness, that includes a deep love with our Creator.

Maybe I come from a more affectionate culture (Latin) where we hug, kiss, hold etc more then say my good brethern from say...germanic or british tribes ;- )

Yes, praise God in His might, no don't treat Jesus like a teen heart throb, but songs of loving Him from your soul, of resting in Him, etc. is fine.
3/25/11 10:12 PM
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DyingBreed
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something i heard on klove this morning reminded me of this thread. the song was "amazing love" by whoever, and he sang with such gayness it made me sick. the lyrics were good, but the way he sang it was all "valley girl" and overly "sweet".


i had to keep listening to it because the way he said, "amazing love, i know its true-ah-eww, its my joy to honor you" the way he said true made me sooo mad, but i had to listen for the next "true" so i could get sick all over again, lol

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