Sinful Music In Church Will Send You to Hell

I’ve mentioned here that what is considered to be “sin” changes in the Christian church.  There is no universal standard, it’s just what fits the culture and conventional wisdom of the time.

The same thing  applies to “church music”.  What is considered to be blasphemous to one generation, or one branch of Christianity, is the holy music somewhere else.

I had an uncle who was a missionary.  When he returned to our small town church, where he grew up, I remember him remarking at the Sunday service, “It’s so great to be back where real Christian music is sang, without the syncopation.”

I was watching Pat Robertson answer “viewer mail” several years ago when someone asked him if Christian rock music was Christian.  “If it doesn’t have a strong bass beat,” was his answer.

It worked both ways.  Church music performed in black churches in the South was taken, with little change I’ve heard, into the bars to become the blues.  There was much criticism by the gospel community of this church music gone drinkin’.

All this was brought to mind by an article this morning on a Christian web site where a Christian rock artist spoke of the barriers to performing his music in churches. It must be as true today as it has always been that some music is what God wants in His church, and the rest is music of the Devil.

It’s just that God tells different people, and different generations, different things about church music.

Avatar of Jon Lindgren

About Jon Lindgren

I am a former President of the Red River Freethinkers in Fargo, ND, a retired NDSU economics professor and was Mayor of Fargo for 16 years.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Sinful Music In Church Will Send You to Hell

  1. A. Friend says:

    I’ll pray for you, Jon. You seem to have a lot of disdain Christianity. It is easy to find sinners who are Christians. But at least we acknowledge our sinfulness and repent – at least the true Christians. But what does an atheist have to look forward to?

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      A. Friend 2:46 Thanks for stopping by to comment. I hope you do so again.

      This point of this post was to highlight the many parts of the church that are arbitrary. I have discussed how various sins are popular to bash for a while, they fade and become acceptable behaviors for Christians. I pointed out the same pattern in church music.

      I don’t myself see this as “distain”. It seems instead like I’m pointing out something that is not disputable. I see you did not dispute this. It is rather a mystery why people so enjoy shooting the messenger. But, welcome nevertheless.

      • opinionated says:

        Your blogs are really pathetic and illustrate just what a waste of space you and your group are and why the community dislikes you so very much. What an epitaph.

  2. Brad Mills says:

    Personally, I see religion, at least the more radical fundamentalist versions, as a form of mental illness. It is much like a drug addiction, where people get intoxicated from their involvement in it, and lose their ability to think rationally and make sound judgments.

    Historically, it has been a political system designed for the purpose of controlling people through fear, and of course making a few particular clergy very rich and powerful.

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Brad 2:52 The music part of religion is an interesting thing to ponder by itself. The pentecostal branch of Christianity is bulldozing Catholoism in South American. One would wonder how this could happen with the money, staff and cathedrals that are all over those countries.

      One explanation given by converts is that the music is so fun in the Pentecostal churches it is irresistable.

      • Wanna B Sure says:

        Jon; In sales, there is an old saying. “It worked so good, I quit doing it”.
        I believe there is an element of truth in this in what happened with the Catholic Church in So. America, and the population in general. When Liberation Theology was introduced through the Jesuites there, the emphasis of what ” worked so good ” was substantially replaced with the social Gospel. One could say a “new roof with no foundation.” On would think at least superficially that this was a good thing, that is to say to help them become more physically secure, (not a bad thing), but this movement became a political movement (with a little Marxism), lacking the spirituality of what “worked so good” in the past. Then came the Pentecostals with a form of light subjective spirituality that was easy to absorb without all the trappings. More Mesmerizing than irresistable. Less guilt, but more shallow. I understand the Catholic Church is trying to reverse the trends of the past, but they have lost ground with their slow to correct actions. I also understand that in some of these third world countries, the Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons have concentrated their efforts. The Witnesses especially, are doing better in countries with a less educated population.

        • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

          Wanna 3:46 You may be right in your analysis or what has happened in S. A. I suppose it is complicated, certainly more so than merely the music as this person I referred to said.

          I do look at the social gospel thing differenty than you do. My understanding is the social gospel was kind of removed from the Catholic program under the previous Pope and the new heavy hand of ortodoxy has been the norm for a couple of decades. That, perhaps the social gospel was more popular. But, the Pentecostal thing predates the former Pope, so I may be wrong.

          The simple answer to me is that Pentecostalism fits the indigenous culture, both the native indigenous and the culture that was oringinally from Spain but has now morphed into something different, better than Catholocism.

    • Frank says:

      Sounds right, Brad.

      I recall going to a co-worker’s church- outside of the mainstream with it’s rock-n-roll services- but once again decided it wasn’t for me when my friend’s wife went bonkers… I guess the official term is “speaking in tongues”. I never even saw anyone get that nuts at the old college parties…

  3. entech says:

    Can’t have that kind of devil’s music, it leads to to tapping and eventually dancing. I think it was G.B.Shaw that described dancing as the vertical expression of a horizontal desire, now that is the original sin.

  4. santa says:

    is “Faith No More” the official band of this blog? lol

    • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

      Santa 5:45 Thanks for posting.

      “is ‘Faith No More’ the offical band of this blog?”

      No, a large slice of our society is helped by faith. Those who receive something from it should participate with all the enthusiasm they can muster. Another slice, a much smaller one, does not receive anything from it and cannot, even if it tries, believe in its tenents. Today’s blog, about sinful music, is just a discussion reflecting accurately, so far as I can tell, the fact that music deemed acceptable depends on the age of the listener and the branch of Christianity. As with sin in general, it is an arbitrary judgement.

      Your comments are welcome here.

      • Bob says:

        To Jon 1:40
        I don’t think its mentally healthy for religous people to muster up and be religious as possible.
        You saying that, scares me Jon. And it scares me you would encourage faithheads. Shudder.

        As Carl Sagan has said, “It is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.”–Carl Sagan

        • Avatar of Jon Lindgren Jon Lindgren says:

          Bob 10:47 “…it scares me you would encourage faithheads.”

          A couple things it seems we can count on. One, there will always be people who believe in some religion and, two, if they don’t get into the government or bring it up in social contexts, it doesn’t affect those who do not believe. Unfortunately, the propects of believers not trying to get into government or convert the unwashed is not too promising, but we can hope.

  5. Bob says:

    Has anyone here watched “Marjoe” on youtube? Its a documentary from 1972 about a guy who was forced to evangelize when he was a kid, but becomes an atheist when he grows up, but still goes to churches to evangelize just to get the money. The pentacostal music is something else. And its funny.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>