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Ukulelemike

Biblical Separation

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Much of what we call "old fashioned religion" isn't all that old at all and at one time was something "new".

 

Most of the hymns in our hymnals are actually "new", having been written mostly within the past hundred or two hundred years; which means for the nearly 2,000 years of Christianity before them music was different. When we read the history of our hymns there came a point, in the latter 1800s if I remember correctly, that the music style took a dramatic change from previous hymns. Some denounced this, some embraced it, now they are in our hymnals.

 

The music Moody used as he travelled about was "modern" and "new", something which most conservative churches of the time denounced as worldly, and yet today much of that is in our hymnals and our musical styles have progressed even beyond what Moody used.

 

Many would rather ignore it, but there is differences among people when it comes to preference, culture and such that does affect aspects regarding music. I've heard white Baptist pastors say certain music is okay for the black Baptists down the street but it's not right in a white Baptist church. Why?

 

One problem many Western Christians have brought about around the world has been their attempt to force those in other countries, such as in Africa, India and such, to adopt their approved Western style music while calling all the locals musical styles evil. This is one of the reasons Christianity has long been viewed as a "white mans religion" and a propaganda tool of the West.

 

What is there under the sun that one can't find a worldly connection with? Even our Bible is used by the world, sometimes in very evil ways. Whatever form of music we are using, there is a worldly counterpart. Whatever modern things we have in our churches, they have worldly connections.

 

Myself, I like the actually no-so-old hymns like Amazing Grace, It Is Well With My Soul, When The Roll Is Called Up Yonder, and such. Why? Much of it has to do with growing up with such, preference.

 

Do I want to attend church with a rocking style band? No. Neither do I want to attend one with an orchestra. I don't particularly want to attend a church with a big choir either. To one extent or another, we can find all these in Baptist churches today. My preference is more on the quiet side and congregational singing.

 

When it comes to music, I know what draws me closer to the Lord, what helps me worship and praise Him. While I might not understand their choices, I don't give a lot of time to thinking about what other Christians listen to, or don't.

 

Depending upon what part of the world they are from, white Christians will offer a plethora of views on music. The same is true for black Christians, which I've noticed vast differences between where they live in the States, or what part of Africa they live in. Indians, Koreans and others have differing takes on music. The music Jews used in Bible times is much different than we use today. Even what is called traditional Jewish music today is very much different than what we use.

 

Local churches can determine their musical stance and we can choose whether we want to attend a particular local church or not. Within our own local church we can, and should, be involved in things regarding music just as we can, and should, with regards to other matters within our local church.

 

Far too much attention is drawn to this matter because we are constantly looking at what this or that church is doing. Well, a local Baptist church has a female associate pastor, which is clearly (to me anyway) unbiblical, and I would have nothing to do with that church, but I'm not going to focus upon that and keep raising the issue over and over again. I'm going to focus upon the Lord and how I can serve the Lord through my home church and how we can keep our home church on the straight and narrow for Christ.

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When I recently posted on the re-writing of the music of a hymn by the CCM group "Casting Crowns", and I thought maybe we could have a discussion on the general issue of separation.

 

It seems so strange to me that an issue like separation, whch has its roots in Eden, ('Eat from all these trees, DON'T eat frm THAT one'), was a big reason for the world-wide flood, (sons of God with daughters of men-not allowed, regardless of who the sons of God were-let's not start that again!), it clearly taught in the laws of Moses, (eat these animals, not those, separate your seed, separate your fabrics, etc, so that ye may learn to discern evil from good), and well into the New Testament, WHY, tell me, WHY can't Christians seem to understand that it is a command that the things of God be clearly different from the things of the world? Fads in clothing, in music, in entertainments, etc, there should be separation. 

 

One thing that can often help us in making such discernments, is the lasting character of a thing-music continually changes in styles, as do clothing and other fashions-why are Christians always wanting to be on the 'cutting edge' of such things? We are told to seek the old paths, but most today want everything new-fresh oil, a new revelation, a fresh anointing, latter rain, the next big thing in church. Extreme this or that. I just don't get it. We follow an old-time religion, we follow an old Book, and a Saviour who taught 2,000 years ago things still relevant today.

 

If there's truly "nothing new under the sun', why do so many seek new?

:goodpost:

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Much of what we call "old fashioned religion" isn't all that old at all and at one time was something "new"....I'm going to focus upon the Lord and how I can serve the Lord through my home church and how we can keep our home church on the straight and narrow for Christ.

 

I somewhat agree with much of what you said, but I do think there is a point to be made in terms of what Mike had to say about separation. Certainly, musical styles have changed throughout history and will continue to do so until the end of time. There has to be a distinction, I think, from Christian music changing organically rather than attempting to emulate the world. Many threads of self-described Christian music exists solely as a way to be like a certain segment of secular society to gain acceptance. Christian Rap or R&B or Rock are largely oxymorons because the definitive characteristics of musical genres go beyond notes and beats. They embody philosophies and are designed to evoke certain emotions. Try as one might, it is near impossible to separate the rage-inducing qualities from heavy metal or the self-aggrandizing materialism of rap. That's somewhat of a tangent, but my main point is that Christian music, just like Christians themselves, should be distinctly different from world. The same way we Christians are suppose to walk, talk, look, and act different so that we are emulating and worshipping God (instead of ourselves or other objects/people), Christian music should look and sound different and be designed to evoke a worshipful and reverent emotion centered on God and not self.

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I somewhat agree with much of what you said, but I do think there is a point to be made in terms of what Mike had to say about separation. Certainly, musical styles have changed throughout history and will continue to do so until the end of time. There has to be a distinction, I think, from Christian music changing organically rather than attempting to emulate the world. Many threads of self-described Christian music exists solely as a way to be like a certain segment of secular society to gain acceptance. Christian Rap or R&B or Rock are largely oxymorons because the definitive characteristics of musical genres go beyond notes and beats. They embody philosophies and are designed to evoke certain emotions. Try as one might, it is near impossible to separate the rage-inducing qualities from heavy metal or the self-aggrandizing materialism of rap. That's somewhat of a tangent, but my main point is that Christian music, just like Christians themselves, should be distinctly different from world. The same way we Christians are suppose to walk, talk, look, and act different so that we are emulating and worshipping God (instead of ourselves or other objects/people), Christian music should look and sound different and be designed to evoke a worshipful and reverent emotion centered on God and not self.

I agree, some music simply isn't compatible with Christianity. This is part of the problem with using such a broad term as CCM. The original meaning of CCM was rather narrow but today it encompasses such a wide variety of styles and types that it's not a good term to use.

 

There is a huge difference between a modern hymn that most would find very difficult to try and distinguish from an older hymn and some "Christian" heavy metal with blaring guitar and a guy screaming near unintelligible words. Even so, both are labeled CCM, along with a wide variety of other musical styles.

 

I've never encountered and unsaved person who confused "light" CCM with secular music. There was even a family owned pizza place across the river which played "light" (I don't know what else to call it) CCM in their business and some unsaved folks used to ask them why they had to play that "Jesus music" all the time. For the most part, that "Jesus music" helped to keep the riff-raff out (they couldn't stand the conviction) and made it a very family friendly place to dine in...and no alcohol, loud secular music or cussing that one hears in most other pizza places.

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WHY, tell me, WHY can't Christians seem to understand that it is a command that the things of God be clearly different from the things of the world? Fads in clothing, in music, in entertainments, etc, there should be separation. 

 

Because our local churches are filled with carnal people, many of them false converts because they love the world too much to live for Christ.  It's not enough to read Baptist Bread every morning, sing in the choir every Sunday and put an "I love Jesus" sticker on your bumper.  

 

Those of us who are saved are not strong enough to be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.  Indeed we're often castigated for doing so, thrown out or told to shut up lest we offend the ladies with thigh high tight dresses and 5 inch heels with broided hair who drop big checks into the offering plate every two weeks (generally speaking of course).  We don't want to offend those teens with their multicolored hair and skin tight clothes and the boys with their gold chains and baggy pants either.  Time has shown that very few change their ways over time and all remain very worldly and carnal unless confronted in some way with their errors (lack of separation in this case).  

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Unless one wants to take an Amish or strict Muslim approach to matters there is no way our clothes, music, housing, work, etc., are going to be so separated from the world that it stands out as "clearly different from the things of the world".

 

My modest clothes are virtually the same as most other men in the area, whether saved or lost. My house, car, the places I shop, eat, the doctors and dentists we see, the services we use, the devices we use, and on and on.

 

Are we to drop all these things because the world uses the same or is it possible that it's what something is being used for that makes things worldly or Christian, not the thing itself?

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Much of what we call "old fashioned religion" isn't all that old at all and at one time was something "new".

 

 

Just because something is "old fashioned" doesn't mean it was right and things "new" aren't always wrong. The old fashioned religion that many IFB's desire to follow didn't spring up until the missionary movements of the 1800's and the modern day IFB movement didn't began until the early to mid 20th century.

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Unless one wants to take an Amish or strict Muslim approach to matters there is no way our clothes, music, housing, work, etc., are going to be so separated from the world that it stands out as "clearly different from the things of the world".

 

My modest clothes are virtually the same as most other men in the area, whether saved or lost. My house, car, the places I shop, eat, the doctors and dentists we see, the services we use, the devices we use, and on and on.

 

Are we to drop all these things because the world uses the same or is it possible that it's what something is being used for that makes things worldly or Christian, not the thing itself?

I suppose the point it, we don't want to be following after the specific fads and fashions the world follows after. CCM does just that, which is why there is "Christian" rap, rock, metal, hip-hop, etc: the secular world made it popular, and Christians went following after its popularity; how is this to be considered holy? It is being conformed to the world, not transformed. There has been no renewal of the mind, ebcause the mind still desires the things it enjoyed while an active part of the world. I may wear a t-shirt, but should I wear a t-shirt from a rock concert? If not, why would I wear a t-shirt from a CCM rock concert?

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I suppose the point it, we don't want to be following after the specific fads and fashions the world follows after. CCM does just that, which is why there is "Christian" rap, rock, metal, hip-hop, etc: the secular world made it popular, and Christians went following after its popularity; how is this to be considered holy? It is being conformed to the world, not transformed. There has been no renewal of the mind, ebcause the mind still desires the things it enjoyed while an active part of the world. I may wear a t-shirt, but should I wear a t-shirt from a rock concert? If not, why would I wear a t-shirt from a CCM rock concert?

How are those forms of music fads when some of it's been around longer than we've been alive? A fad is typically short lived, and then folks move on to the next fad. Also, CCM covers much more than just those styles and yet they all get lumped together.

 

Some of our favorite hymns used the popular musical styles of their day, with some even using already in use popular tunes. As was point out previously, there is nothing new under the sun.

 

The only thing on my t-shirts is a pocket. If a shirt has words or images, one should be discerning with regards to whether they are appropriate or not. The same with music, what are they singing?

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