Well, I tried and tried to embed this video, but it looks like I’ll need to consult the wordpress.com embed code gurus again because Godtube’s code is defying me. However, I strongly encourage my readers to hop over to this link to hear VeggieTales creator Phil Vischer’s take on this (awful) article. The topic is Christian music, specifically CCM. The author of this article lays out five reasons to “kill” it. In this 18-minute clip from his podcast, Vischer pretty much nails it as he systematically breaks down this writer’s arguments and why they’re flawed. His two co-hosts play devil’s advocate to some extent, but by the time he’s done making his case, one of them says that she has done a 180 after initially being impressed by the article. He makes many points that I have frequently made myself in discussion with friends and family, and I think it is well worth a listen. (Note: The author of the article includes a rather frightening image of two heathen metal musicians, so be prepared for that if you choose to read it, though Phil reads the most relevant portions verbatim as he rebuts them.)
I am personally very alarmed by this spirit of destruction that I see among certain liberal Christians when it comes to things bearing the “Christian” label. People like Steve Taylor, Derek Webb and this Catholic writer are not afraid to say in so many words that they want Christian music, movies, etc. to “die,” be “killed,” and other charming sentiments. It’s hateful, it’s bitter, it’s self-righteous, and it’s not building up the body of Christ. Combine all that with shallow reasoning and false claims, and you have a lethal combination.
I’m thankful to Vischer for popping that bubble. Although, there was a bit at the end of this podcast, not included in this clip, where I definitely found myself in disagreement with him. He said that although he supports Christians who make art for the church, they shouldn’t expect to reach any non-believers with that art, be it music, film, or whatever. I wanted to say, really? None? Well, tell that to the people who still hold tent revival meetings. Tell that to the people who got dragged to a Christian rock concert by their church friends and made a choice for Christ. Tell that to the thousands of non-Christians who saw The Passion of the Christ. Such people do exist. It’s a needless exaggeration to say that no unchurched folk will ever hear/see/be affected by a piece of contemporary, explicitly Christian media.
But I still agree with virtually all of Phil’s points. If you have a chance to listen to the clip, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Or if you don’t have time but still have a thought, feel free to share it.