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The Place of a Worshipper


I am the LORD, that is My name;
      And My glory I will not give to another,
      Nor My praise to carved images. Isaiah 42:8
 
Something has been nagging at me for quite a while now. I am not to sure I am comfortable with the direction contemporary Christian music is taking. Not all, but there are those that in my spirit when I hear their CD’s or hear them in concert, that seem to more interested in giving people a good show and instead of Christ being exalted it is them.

I remember the concerts I used to go to during the 70’s and early 80’s at the old Montreal Forum. They were all about sound and show. Led Zeppelin, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Queen and Supertramp. You could always be sure you would get quite a feast of sight and sound. Of course not much of our hearing would be left afterwards, but we were wowed. They were our idols and they exalted in being so. They loved the glory their fans would give them.

I see today many Christian bands and artists doing the same things. They have become prima donnas. I remember attending a music conference down in Pennsylvania one year. They had some pretty big name Christian artists coming in to do concerts and workshops. The problem was that the promoter had a hard time getting people out to this conference and had to settle to having it in a smaller facility. A few things from that conference stuck in my mind. One of them was seeing John Starnes in the parking lot talking with the promoter and telling him he was waving his fee for being there because of the situation. That impressed me as I know that John flies his own plane to each event. He told the promoter he believed what the promoter was doing was worthwhile and not to get discouraged. Another image was of this top Christian group that everyone wanted to see driving up in a huge tractor trailer with the name of the band emblazoned on the on the side. They took one look at the facilities and where they were to perform and freaked. They refused to do their show. They said without their stage show it they couldn’t perform. It was all about the show. When asked if they could scale it back a bit, they were insulted and left. We later saw that they had booked into the same hotel I was staying and were spending their time playing pool. The next day the Imperials showed up with and equally big stage show. For them it was no problem to scale back and perform and they were very gracious about it.

Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with a good show. The problem arises is when the medium becomes more important than the message. When people focus more on the performer than on the message they are supposed to be conveying. It makes me really squeamish when I hear young girls screaming as they used to at Beatles concerts at Christian concerts. What bothers me even more is to see these performers soak it up instead of telling them that it is Christ they should be worshipping.

I also have trouble with many of the young female singers that have come on the Christian music scene. Many of their vocals are breathy and sensual. I find little difference between the way they sing and those that are in the world.

It is not easy. Many of the Christian labels are owned by secular companies which put pressure on them to sell CD’s. Contemporary Christian music has become a very lucrative market. It is very easy to become caught up in the glamour and attention you get. You need to be strongly grounded in the Word and your relationship with Christ to stand strong. So many of the singers out there started off singing in churches, but the pull of the world was too strong for them. Research for yourself where Brittany Spears, Whitney Housten, Beyonce Knowles, and Jessica Simpson got their starts. Where is their faith today and what kind of answer will they have to give to God for the way they used what He gave them?

In 1986 I made a recording called "All For Him". I enjoyed the attention I received. I loved hearing my music on the radio or seeing my name on posters or billboards. In reality it was not "All For Him" as much as it was "All For Me". Nowadays I’d rather run and hide then take any kind of glory from my Lord Jesus Christ.

Worship alone belongs to the Lord and we never should give that worship to something that is created. Not even the angels will accept worship and we were created just a little lower than them. Ask John what happened when he tried to kneel at an angels feet.

And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, "See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy." Revelation 19:10

If you are a worship leader, a musician or a singer, remember He is the one who has given you your talents. He gave them to you to glorify Him. Never your self. Don’t let others exalt you. Always point to Christ. He alone is worthy of glory. 

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Comments on: "The Place of a Worshipper" (7)

  1.   I am new to "spaces" and am just learning how to navigate, but you had a blog on my opening page..   So I looked up your profile and have been reading your life story.   What denomination is your church?  

  2. Phil - personal acct said:

    Preach on. May people use their gifts to praise and worship God. May their gifts, words, and time speak testimonies of the greatness of God. I ask all this in Jesus\’ name, Amen.

  3. *Nods* I agree with the parts I read. Recently my youth group took a trip to see a Christian concert and it seemed as if it was more for show than to edify Christ through worship.
    I especially like Keith Green and Matt Redman.

  4. I am also new to the Spaces, and still learning, so I clicked on your site, and found that I like it very much. The music video, I\’ve played about 10 times, I like it so well.
      I\’m not really too interested in your denomination, I just like what you have to say. I can relate to what you said about giving God the glory. I\’m a Sunday School Teacher, and when one of the members of the class pays me a complement on my teaching, it\’s hard not to feel a little proud of myself, and I have to pray; Lord help me to remember that it\’s not me, It\’s You, and without You I can do nothing. But sometimes I feel inadequate, and they encourage me, and that\’s good.      God is good!

  5. Don\’t you find that "OUR" Father puts a song and a tune in your hearts mind atomatically when your thoughts are on HIM? A lot of "OUR" prayers are Pslams (songs) to the Lord. It is good to see your site at "OUR" friends house. Let me hear from you too. May I publish your good news on my site? Imagine if every Christian had a Live Sapce to share with the world. http://www.oneplace.com/ministries/Afterglow/ one of my favorites. My kind of love music.

  6. I am new to "spaces". Just wanted to comment . Enjoyed reading your story re: christian concerts, and want to say that I agree.

  7. The same with any gifts and talents. How easily we may become proud of them and forget the Giver and the purpose of the talents. I agree with you. Here in Poland Christian worship music is not so popular as it is in the US. But when I follow what is happening there in the US and also in Australi I get the feeling that there is too much commercial (like The Hillsong Church with their rock concerts where the singers appear to be more pop stars than people praising the Lord, well at least I have mixed feelings about it). God bless you.

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