Rap and Christian Youth

18 12 2013

I was a teen in the 60’s and 70’s. It was the time of Vietnam, hippies, and Rock and Roll. The phrase “generation gap” was coined because of the many differences of opinion between the generation of WW2 and the Baby Boomers. One of the differences was music. We identified with the sound, artists, and Woodstock. When I entered the ministry in the late 70’s, the music that I grew up with was vilified. The music was sinful, the beat was demonic, and its artists were wicked. Records were played backwards to find hidden Satanic messages that were possessing our minds on the subliminal level.  Even Contemporary Christian Music was a compromise of Scriptural standards.

When I was “liberated” from such a legalistic lifestyle I determined not to trash a generation’s music just because I did not care for its artistic form. The church rejected my generation by rejecting its music and I was not going to do the same.

Because of a brain disorder, I found classical music to be more conducive to mental focus and a constant battle fighting confusion. I also listen to Christian music; oldies when I get into a nostalgic mood. In my spinning class at the Y, we use upbeat Pop music. Even though I do not care for Rap Music as a preference, I will not fight it nor preach against it. I have allowed a concert with Christian Rappers in my church. I am still determined not to trash the music form of a younger generation. I draw the line at questionable lyrics.

This except is from a blog by Al Mohler. He is my age and another lover of classical music.

“Rap music is not my music. I do not come from a culture in which rap music is the medium of communication and I do not have the ear for it that I have for other forms of music. But I do admire its virtuosity and the hold that is has on so many, for whom it is a first and dominant musical language. I want that language taken for the cause of the Gospel and I pray to see a generation of young Gospel-driven rappers take dominion of that music for the glory of God. I see that happening now, and I rejoice in it. I want to see them grow even more in influence, reaching people I cannot reach with music that will reach millions who desperately need the Gospel. The same way that folks who first heard Bach desperately needed to hear the Gospel.

The good, the beautiful, and the true are to be combined to the greatest extent possible in every Christian endeavor, rap included. I have no idea how to evaluate any given rap musical expression, but rappers know. I do know how to evaluate the words, and when the words are saturated with the Gospel and biblical truth that is a wonderful thing. Our rapping Gospel friends will encourage one another to the greatest artistic expression. I want to encourage them in the Gospel. Let Bach’s maxim drive them all — to make (their) music the “handmaid of theology.”

Bach’s English Suite No. 3 in G Minor is playing as I write this. It makes me happy to hear it. But knowing that the Gospel is being taken to the ears and hearts of new generation by a cadre of gifted young Gospel rappers makes me far happier.”

Albert Mohler

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One response

19 12 2013
Youngstown

BACK IN MY YOUTH THERE WAS WHAT WAS CALLED “SHEET MUSIC” THAT YOU COULD BUY TO SING ALONG WITH MUSIC ON THE RADIO. I DOUBT VERY IF THERE IS SUCH A THING FOR RAP MUSIC.
IN MY OPINION RAP MUSIC IS “CRAP MUSIC”.

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