Adventist Media Response and Conversation

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

I am beginning to think that one of the first things we need to do is to convert the musicians of the Christian world. The Christian churches spend so much time singing their lyrics, which in general reinforce a foolish variety of Christianity. Oh it is the dominate view no doubt but it is filled with meaningless trivialities and downright contradictory statements. Consider the following which I recently saw while visiting a church.

Notice this quote towards the end at 2:30 min:

"I came to save you from so many sins
But they have a cost
Someone has to die
You...or Me
So I took on your sin
And traded in my life for yours
And I died in your place
Because I love you"

Over all the message is fairly good. But it makes so little sense to say that "Someone has to die You or me". We all still die by the way...And who says that someone has to die because of sin? God? Why did He make that rule in the first place if it is a rule and why not tell us about this rule in the Bible? (you say surely die is a consequence of sin not an act of God). How did Jesus take my sin? I still sin don't I, I bet you do too. So He hardly took my sin as I still am busy committing it. Who did He trade His life for mine? Is God not in control? Is God doing the trading...because he says you sin and you must die...I have to kill someone because of sin!? So then Jesus comes along and shows us forgiveness...something that God would not do because God demands somebody die.

The conclusion is:
"I am the way, the truth and the life
I am Jesus
I am not here to condemn you
I came to bring you back to life
Rely on me
I will forgive you
And give you eternal life
I love you 
And I did all of this for you
To have a relationship with you
Will you follow me?"

Would not the more appropriate method be to express the love of God revealed through Jesus that He would come and show us what love is, what forgiveness is and to what length love goes in that greater love hath no man then to lay down their life. That even though evil kills and destroys it is no match for God who raises and gives life. That is the message of the cross. Not a trade, not a God that demands someone has to die. 

Yet when I saw this video at church I had just sat through the singing of 3 songs, which held that Christ paid out penalty or as the lyrics from "In Christ Alone" say:  

"Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live, I live"

Or this from the "Scandal of Grace" from Hillsong united:

"Too much to make sense of it all
I know that Your love breaks my fall
The scandal of grace, You died in my place 
So my soul will live"
The "wrath" of God was satisfied because Jesus is killed on the cross? Really is that the gospel?
It is not too much to make sense of if you simply remove the tradition of Penal substitutionary atonement. Which was never even part of the Bible or the early church but a church tradition built upon a misrepresentation of God.

Catchy tunes carry on a message that is contrary to the gospel. It is contrary to the nature of God and is completely foreign to the message of Jesus. And we keep it alive because we don't take time to think about what our religion is saying. It is time to reclaim the God of love and leave the god of paganism behind.


Richard Faiola said...

You and others reading, might apprecate Brian D. McLaren
A NEW KIND OF CHRISTIANITY - Ten Questions that are transforming the faith.

Says many of the things you have been and are saying. Part of the Emerging Church movement, though he avoids the term.

ne said...

Thank you Richard. McLaren is excellent in giving a new and more propriate meaning of the gospel. Some of our old ways to express the gospel does just not make sence. Of course all this have to do with an understanding of something that is above our way to understand. The way to show love and support the good side of humans, is a better methode to building the Heavenly Kingdom here and now. That's our mission and the pratical part of the gospel.
I do recommend McLarens book :-)