rebelling against low expectations

Should Christians listen to secular music?

S

RILEY WRITES: This is a question I’ve wondered about for a long time. I love music in a variety of genres (from 80’s to Jeremy Camp to pop). I especially like songs with upbeat, catchy tunes.

While I know that the lyrics of some songs aren’t necessarily “God honoring” (they don’t mention God) or don’t have a Christian theme, does that really make them wrong to listen to? I know that there are definitely some songs that cross the line and really aren’t okay, but most seem to fall in a “gray area” — not good, not bad.

How should we as Christians think about this and still not fall into legalism?


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  • I don’t think that there’s anything wrong with listening to music in ‘grey’ areas. If Jesus had been invited to listen to some music with somebody, then I think he would have done so–as long as listening to the music wasn’t sinning. So I definitely don’t think that listening to music in ‘grey’ areas is wrong.

    However, I would be more inclined to think of it as a matter of whether you are spending your time well.

    (I would also say that we need to be careful about pushing our opinions or our freedom in this matter, or in many ‘grey’ matters. 1 Corinthians 8.)

    • Yes, for me it can really become just an issue of how I’m spending my time. Great point. And I was just thinking about 1 Cor. 8 “Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak.” (v. 9)

  • In my opinion, just because lyrics to a song don’t mention God doesn’t mean that it doesn’t honor Him, so there’s nothing inherently wrong with listening to such music. In the words of Jon Foreman of Switchfoot, “Does Lewis or Tolkien mention Christ in any of their fictional series’? Are Bach’s sonatas Christian?…Christ didn’t come and die for my songs, he came for me.” The gist of what he’s saying is that there isn’t really such a thing as “Christian music”; there are only Christians who make music.

    One example of a Christian who I feel has done a remarkable job of keeping his faith, even while not being a “Christian artist,” is Adam Young of Owl City. Whether or not you like his musical style, you can still see that his faith shows in not a few of the songs he sings. He shares the good news of the Gospel using the platform God has given him as an artist. Another example is Carrie Underwood, who also sings about her faith, but is not a “Christian artist.” Just because they doesn’t mention God in every single song they sing doesn’t make them any less Christian or that we should only listen to their Christian-themed songs.

    I think that the real priority when choosing what music to listen to is knowing what you will do with what you hear. For a few, cussing and swearing in the music they listen to isn’t going to affect their walk with Christ in the least. But, like David Sampson said, we do need to be careful of pushing the boundaries of our freedom in Christ: for a great many of us, cussing in music is a bad influence that we should not allow into our lives.

    • Carrie Underwood is “christian?” LoL, I guess everybody is these days.

      “Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. (‭Matthew‬ ‭7‬:‭20‬ KJV)”

      “Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit. (‭Matthew‬ ‭12‬:‭33‬ KJV)”

      • Well, while I don’t know how strong her faith is, it definitely is there. Here’s one example of many of her belief in God in her music.

        “And now I’m singing along to amazing grace
        Can’t nobody wipe this smile off my face
        Got joy in my heart, angels on my side
        Thank God almighty, I saw the light
        Gonna look ahead, no turning back
        Live every day, give it all that I have
        Trust in someone bigger than me”

        -Something in the Water by Carrie Underwood

        • Yeah, (it would be hilarious if we fought about someone else’s salvation, glad we aren’t;)
          I actually don’t know hardly anything about Carrie Underwood (until 30 minutes ago) I said what I did because I’ve heard my dad say that about her. I looked up some of her music before I said anything, and was a little surprised by the first one, “something in the water”, but then I got to some others and was like “um, is this a different person?” I’d probably say she’s maybe a christian, just lukewarm, but most likely not (I don’t know her though).

          • I don’t really know who Carrie Underwood is – but didn’t she write “Jesus Take the Wheel”? I don’t know her other music but that’s one of my favorites.

          • When I saw Carrie Underwood mentioned, I had a similar reaction. She may be a Christian, but her music doesn’t necessarily express it… Even Owl City has music that doesn’t necessarily reflect Christian themes (for instance, his duet with HeIsWe, “All About Us”). I like both artists, but you have to judge each song according to scripture.

            As far as country music, I’ve noticed a common theme that God is frequently mentioned, but is not given precedence. The stereotype that country music is all about beer, trucks, and women, is… well… kinda true. It just has enough “religion” thrown in to give the illusion of Christianity. I like country music to an extent, but I wouldn’t say it’s at all spiritually authoritative.

          • One true stereotype! Does anyone have suggestions for good Country music? By good I mean music that’s not anti-God. I have a co-worker who loves country music, but she listens to “the Dark Side” of the genre. I’d like to bring in some okay Country that we can both tolerate (I the lyrics, she the style).

          • I don’t know of any country artists of the top of my head that are completely wholesome. As I said, it’s they get a little “religion” in there, so every artist usually has a song or two that are pretty good. “I Pray” by Lonestar is pretty good. They’re a generally wholesome group; one of my favorite country ones. I’m drawing a blank as to other songs. Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, and Keith Urban are all hit-or-miss. They have a few morally sound songs that are nice.

          • I really like Paper Angels and I Love you this much. kersone kid is good to he has a really incredible life story that you can find on youtube

          • Hey, I’m a big country music fan. Recently I’ve been actually caring what I listen to and wanting good morals in my lyrics. So I really like Live Like You Were Dying (Tim McGraw), Don’t Blink (Kenny Chesney), and You’re Gonna Miss This (Trace Adkins) just to name a few. All of these songs deal with time and how fast life goes. Actually they could be a good way to share the gospel.
            Tim McGraw is pretty clean in general. And for older country I like Alan Jackson. But as with all music (even “Christian”) you have to be discerning.
            Good luck! I know how difficult music can be in a work environment.

          • Glad to hear that there are others looking for clean country ;).
            Some of my favorite artists are (and my fav song):
            Rascal Flats (Ellsworth)
            Lee Brice (I Drive Your Truck)
            Tim McGraw (Live Like You Were Dying, Don’t Take The Girl)
            Alan Jackson (Drive, Remember When, Where Were You)
            George Strait (Carried Away, Best Day of My Life, True, I Cross My Heart)
            I do not unconditionally recommend any of these artists. You gotta use discernment when listening… but isn’t that the case with anything ;P?
            Who do you like to listen to?

          • I like
            Rodney Atkins (I’ve been watching you [or Watching You, I can’t remember])
            Florida Georgia Line (Hey Girl, Dirt)

          • I’m not a fan of hers, but growing up I (quite literally) listened to nothing but Carrie Underwood’s “Jesus, Take The Wheel”. It’s been years since I’ve listened to it and I could still sing the entire thing by heart!
            Anyway…sorry! That was really random. 😉

    • I totally agree with everything you said! And yes, Owl City is great! I went through a phase of listening to his music and nothing else for like two months :).

  • Hey Riley! It depends more about what the lyrics portray than whether the band is “Christian” or not. Like Karol Jacob said, Owl City isn’t really a “Christian artist” but his songs portray a strong Christian message. Similarly, Lorde is not a Christian artist, but her Grammy-winning song “Royals” puts fourth the idea that people are more important than money, which is totally a Christian idea. On the other hand, there are some “Christian artists” that can portray ideas totally against Christ. For example, “It’s not me it’s You” by Skillet is little more than a song about hating your enemies. So it’s less about the label that the group has and more about the ideas (and language!) that is being used. Hope that helps!

    • Hey, just wanted to say – I think Skillet’s song “It’s not me it’s You” is sung toward/about Satan… but other than that, I agree with you.

    • Yep, it’s about the ideals and not necessarily whether or not they’re a “Christian” band. Sometimes I get a vibe from so called “Christian” artists that what they’re worshiping isn’t really God (if that makes sense). And sometimes the “Christian” rap genre can get confusing. So yeah, it’s a lot more about the intentions behind the music.

      • I see your point. Sometimes Christian songs aren’t always written for worship. An artist by the name of Britt Nicole has some great Christian songs. A lot of her music is designed for encouragement instead of worship. She writes lyrics about everything from self-image to how God rescues us in times of need. I like this kind of music, but I see how you think that it isn’t really worship as much as something else like encouragement.

        • I find it interesting that Britt Nicole comes up in this conversation. The main song of hers that I have an issue with is “Good Day” from her first album. Similar to the other song mentioned, it seems to be about hating your enemies, not really matching the rest of her music or agreeing with the Bible.

          • I’m unfamiliar with that song. Could you tell me more about it? Sorry I just don’t think I’ve heard that one before and if I have I don’t remember.

          • Yes I see your point. She does seem happy when the bully leaves. Given this person was causing her a lot of pain, but it doesn’t seem like a God-honoring song. However, she sings a really good song called “All This Time”. It’s about how God pulled her out of a really hard time when her parents got divorced. I agree with your point on Good Day though.

          • Hi Emily, I just want to point out that it’s a song that may be more Biblical than it first appears. Like you said, she has some fantastic, God focused songs. Because of that, I wouldn’t jump to the conclusion that she went on a totally different track with “Good Day”. I’ve always seen it as a song about leaving Satan and his ways behind, bidding him “good day”, etc. Just some food for thought. 🙂

            P.s. I know that I’ve essentially left this comment twice… Sorry! I used to be a HUGE Britt Nicole fan, so I couldn’t resist. 😉

          • I think the resentment of the song is directed toward sinful habits and such, but the vagueness makes it difficult to say. That’s a problem with many songs today (like “It’s Not Me, It’s You” by Skillet, which was talked about earlier). To whom the song is directed is not defined, leaving it up to the listener to determine. It can sometimes be used as an excuse for the kind of resentment you’re talking about. So, while I give Britt Nicole the benefit of the doubt, I wouldn’t say this song is entirely God-honoring in and of itself.

          • It’s more like resenting someone, instead of what I think should be forgiveness as a Biblical response.

          • I can understand where you’re coming from, but I’ve always seen the point of that song as bidding Satan “good day”, not allowing him to drag you down anymore, etc. It’s definitely a song that’s open to interpretation, but I think that, considering the message behind most of her other songs, it’s safe to assume that there’s a more Biblical message behind the song than you might initially think.

        • Agreed. It’s not about the song being “Christian” or “worship” necessarily. There’s nothing that says, “because you are a Christian, you must only write worship songs.” I love it when Christian artists feel free to branch out and use their musical abilities in areas other than just contemporary worship. I also think that worship isn’t confined to music. Worship is more of the attitude of the heart and the lifestyle we live. Anything we do can be done for the glory of God, it doesn’t have to be confined to a song.

  • An important point to realize is that music, and art itself, is naturally an expression of God’s nature. He created humanity with the ability to be creative and to reproduce beauty; that’s the center of art: beauty, quality. That’s it’s purpose

    Thus, as the quote Karl shared emphasizes, things can be God-honoring and not necessarily mention God. Composers like Beethoven and Handel wrote “Soli Deo gloria” (“glory to God alone”) on their pieces, although the pieces themselves were completely instrumental.

    The first thing to look for in music, obviously, is its moral quality. If a song contains or eludes to anything immoral, then by all means ditch it. For Christian music, what does it say about God? Many Christian songs just say “I love you, I love you, I love you…” but do they really say anything about God’s nature? Such songs are a far cry from true, worshipful music.

    But if a song doesn’t contain such things, we should look at its compositional quality: does it display the Lord’s beauty? Songs of low muscial quality may not be inherently bad, but they don’t really express what God intended: excellence, skill.

    I love virtually all types of music, but nowadays I mainly only listen to Christian music that has a solid message. This is because, when I used to listen to “non-Christian” music a lot, I noticed my relationship with the Lord “drying out,” so to speak.

    Music has a powerful effect in our lives, so it’s a good idea to use it to pour a Christ-centered message into your heart. But there definitely is more to music than just whether or not it mentions God explicitly.

    • I have found the same thing with music. When I listen to a lot of secular music, the hopeless themes and general pessimism really affect my emotions in a bad way. But there is a good amount of secular music which is encouraging. Some artists I listen to for encouragement, some Christian, some not, in no particular order: Tenth Avenue North, Port Blue, Audio Adrenaline, Casey Darnell, Sky Sailing, Matthew Parker, Capital Kings, Owl City, Ryan Farish, Sunroof. I find it interesting that the secular music I listen to tends towards instrumental…

      • I’m only familiar with 4 of those… I listen to a lot of soundtracks, mainly Doctor Who, Downton Abbey, Emma, and a number of others. I also like songs from musicals like Annie, but I’ll listen to some standard secular and country music on occasion if I find songs that I like. My musical taste is pretty wide, as you can tell….

    • Absolutely. You’re so right, God created music, and we need to ask about our music choices: “Is it beautiful?” or “Does it edify and glorify God and His nature?” And I know what you mean about listening to too much non-Christian music, that although it may seem harmless it does tend to dry out my relationship with the Lord. So is it worth it? – is a question I need to ask myself. “Everything is permissible, but not everything is beneficial.” (1 Cor. 10:23). Very well thought out answer. Thank you!

    • I am a musician myself and I see your point. If it is meant to praise God, it should be beautiful, but I also believe that it’s about intentions. If I sing Let it Go from the popular Disney film, “Frozen,” with the intention of praising God, I think that is pleasing to him. If I sing the most complicated and worshipful song ever composed without emotion and love for God, it’s not really worship. Just thought I’d add my two cents here.

      • Good point! I did not mean to say that musical composition alone is the primary concern of the believer. However, our intentions do not override the nature of a song, nor does the nature of a song override our intentions. They go hand in hand. Unless you alter the meaning of “Let it Go,” it will not be worshipful, on matter what your intentions.

        And as you said, singing a “well-composed” song without the right intentions will also have a negative effect. Even so, worship is not dependent on emotion, although we often confuse it with such. Worship is coming to a realization of God’s nature. Plain and simple. So a “worship song,” by definition, must affirm His attributes, not merely affirm our desire for Him, although such songs have their place.

        I agree with what you said; I just wanted to clarify what may not have been clear in my original comment. Our intentions are key! 🙂

      • So I recently had a long argument about when we were worshiping God in a song. I was on your side, and said that if we didn’t have the emotion, then it’s not really worship. But over the argument, even though I was too stubborn to admit that they were right, I realized that even if we don’t feel it at that moment, God is still praised through the song. Maybe it’s not making us feel like we are close to God and like we are praising Him, but I do think that we are worshiping God. I think that just singing worshipful words to Him will ultimately give Him glory. Just thought that I’d give my viewpoint on the subject:)

        In Christ,
        Eva

        • Just to clear up what I said, yes, your heart has to be in the right place, but you don’t necessarily have to feel emotions for it to be worship. I didn’t know if that was clear enough or if I worded it weirdly:)

        • Actions of obedience often come before feelings. God commands us to worship Him alone, whether we feel like it or not. I heard a quote once (not sure where it came from–possibly Corrie ten Boom?) that said, “Pray when you feel like it, pray when you don’t feel like it, and pray until you feel like it!” Same thing with love. Love isn’t just a feeling; it’s a commitment. Sure, it often comes with feelings, but feelings come and go. Be faithful to God whether you feel like it or not.

          • Yeah, I totally agree with that. “Love isn’t just a feeling, it’s a commitment” is so true. Of course you can feel emotions with love, but if that’s all we went on, love wouldn’t last very long. By the way, I like the quote….I’m not sure who said it either:)

  • I will say this: neither heavy metal nor R&B, neither boy bands nor ex-Disney stars, neither naughty lyrics or merely unfortunate ones are gonna separate us from God’s love. That being said, we should keep our focus on things that won’t detract our focus from God, and I imagine Christians have one reputation to keep or another. As for me, I’ve always found God’s message in songs that weren’t initially intended to praise him, or by a Christian artist—and, ever since watching BlimeyCow’s “How to Write a Worship Song in 5 Minutes or Less” on Youtube I haven’t felt like listening to most of the Christian artists out there. Blending up “Amazing Grace” and putting it with a guitar and some fancy modern ideas like Starbucks and driving home just isn’t the way I like to praise God. It works for other people. But, as I said, I like finding God’s message in other songs and places where you wouldn’t expect to find him, and there are many songs that don’t have to do with God but are still enjoyable and encouraging.

    Should you listen to secular music? Should you eat a donut? Should you wear that shirt with those jeans? Ultimately, the choice is yours, based on your desires and values. Either way, I wouldn’t worry about it too much.

    • Ah, another classic BlimeyCow video. 😀 It’s totally true, though. “Worship music” that just says “Come fill us,” “We want more of You,” or even “I worship You” is not actually worshipful. As John MacArthur points out in one of his books, worship requires affirmation of God’s attributes. We need to focus on Who He is, not on us or what He is to do for us. That’s why I love hymns; their doctrine is often superb. And there are some really good modern songs, too.

    • Awesome answer, Heather! You’re right, NOTHING can separate us from the love of God. Maybe sometimes we make big deals out of things that aren’t big deals (if that makes any sense :)). And I totally agree with you on the contemporary worship songs. Worship is not confined to ten minutes of singing with a few lines of “Amazing Grace” thrown in for good measure :). Gotta love BlimeyCow!

        • Haha no, I’m sure you’re not ;). If you need an introduction, I posted one of their videos above. Mostly it’s just a couple of guys using sarcasm to address today’s issues. Some of them are pretty funny :).

  • (Ugh, too big of a question for one word)

    When this comes up there is a book that’s truth helps to shed light on the subject. And in that book it says:

    “O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. (‭Psalms‬ ‭95‬:‭1‬ KJV)”

    That has nothing to do whatsoever with secular music, I just like it 🙂

    “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. (‭I Corinthians‬ ‭10‬:‭23‬ NKJV)”

    This is in direct regard to the gray area, so according to the bible, it’s all ok to listen too. But in reality, it’s not helpful to out christian walk, and the bible does say:

    “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, (‭Hebrews‬ ‭12‬:‭1‬ KJV)”

    So could that, neither helpful nor bad thing, be described as (not sin) but a weight? That may cause us to be slowed in our race that is before us?

    In conclusion, just remember, I’m not gonna condem anybody but myself, and that goes for everybody else out there too. ~Grant

    • Agreed. But we also need to be aware of what hinders those around us. There are certain kinds of music that I would not discuss or listen to around some of the Christians that I know because they firmly believe it is carnal (this isn’t just secular music but ‘Christian’ music too, things like Shai Linne, King and Country, Starfield etc) Keep away from what causes you problems but do be sensitive to what makes those around you stumble and act accordingly.

  • Like you said, it’s a gray area.

    I think people’s convictions play into a big part of this. Like you mentioned, God doesn’t specifically say “thou shalt not listen to secular music” in the Bible, but people approach it in different ways based on their convictions. Some believe that playing the drums is sinful, while others don’t mind listening to a Katy Perry song every now and then.

    You asked how we can prevent legalism. I set boundaries for myself; for example, I’m okay with listening to secular music as long as the singers don’t cuss or make sexual innuendos, which is hard (but I have found some good songs that meet both those requirements; like the people said down below, OWL CITY!). But I have to remind myself that these boundaries aren’t God-mandated, and I make them mostly for self-control. I know that without self-control, I’d be tipping a little over the edge into darker territory, and then the music might influence me in ways that I can’t predict.

    Hope this helped a little 🙂 Remember to always look to Jesus!
    ~Rachel

  • Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. 1 Peter 2:16 ESV

  • I guess you would say there are songs that are Christian, songs that aren’t anti Biblical (like with morals we don’t stand for) and songs that are anti Biblical. I listen to Christian music, but hardly any secular. for example occasionally I will listen to the credit music for “How to Train Your Dragon Two” or the end music for the LOTR or the Hobbit. But I never even bother to listen to music about girlfriends, boyfriends, relationships, and those other sick things. Yes, that type of music is anti Biblical and I don’t think Christian’s should even listen to or support it.

    • I don’t see why you would say that dating relationships are “sick,” but maybe I’m misunderstanding. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think there is any command in the Bible against listening to music that mentions dating or really any restriction on what kind of music to listen to, so I’m not really sure how it could be anti-Biblical.

      • I think what he means is when the world puts their spin on things like dating and things like that in the music. A lot of explicit music out there is about boyfriends, girlfriends, drugs, and other things I won’t mention, but I think that is the kind of music he is referring to.

      • Karl,

        You twisted my words into something entirely different from what I was saying. When I put the word sick there, I was referring “to those other sick things” I didn’t use ‘sick’ to refer to dating or relationships.

        I guess I should have put it as anti-Christian. What I mean by that is that the music is either immoral, materialistic, and humanistic/all things that are against what the Bible teaches.

    • Hey Liam, thanks for putting your opinion out there. However, I believe that relationships and the feelings that go along with them aren’t anti-Biblical, in fact they were created by God to be good. Yes, there is a context for these types of relationships and feelings – in the premises of commitment and marriage. So yes, I would agree that listening to music about boyfriend/girlfriend situations all the time may create unhealthy, out of place emotions and obsessions. And yes, a lot of times the situations that music talks about concerning romance include disloyalty and lust. However, I wouldn’t say that all “relationship stuff” is sick or wrong.

      • I’m afraid you misinterpreted what I said. As I said to Karl, the use of the word ‘sick’ was used to describe “those other sick things.” I believe that if you go about a relationship in a godly way, then it isn’t bad at all. By no means was I inferring that any relationship is “sick.”

      • that’s so true Grant “Know what you believe, Know why you believe” so many people don’t or their just followers and don’t really know why they don’t believe something. great comment Grant!!
        ~Madeleine

    • a) I love all the How to Train Your Dragon music!
      b) I think that if the music causes sinful thoughts, then it is a problem. I’d also consider it bad if it contains lyrics that I would not want to recite to my grandmother. Other than that, I think secular music is okay, unless you are okay with repeating vulgar language and sinful lyrics to your grandma :).

      • I would agree music with bad lyrics you should not listen too. But have you ever thought of what music that has no bad lyrics, yet meaningless ones can do to you? By constantly filling your head with music talking about materialistic things, or nonsense per say; it can be harmful, even if it necessarily doesn’t use bad language. Mostly all secular music is like that, so that is one of the reasons why I don’t listen to it.

        • I can agree with that too. I think it really depends on the person. If are able to stay totally focused on God and listen to secular music, that’s great. However, like you said, that’s not easy for most of us. I personally need balance to stay focused. I listen to music from movies that contains no good or bad material. However, it would be distracting if that was all that I listened to, so I try to stay balanced with Christianity-centered songs as well. Like I said, it really is up to you how much neutral music you can take while staying focused on God.

          • I don’t believe there is anything called neutrality when it comes to music. You could make a song that isn’t anti-God, but that doesn’t make it neutral. You could have a humanistic song, or a meaningless song that could have some sort of message that isn’t what the Bible teaches.

          • I’m not following your logic, Liam. If something is neither anti-God nor pro-God, then it is, by definition, neutral. Humanism is anti-God, and a song with any message whatsoever is not meaningless (also by definition). If I’m misunderstanding, please explain.

          • I agree with Liam:

            Matthew 12:30

            “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”

          • That verse came to my mind as well, but should it apply to music and other things as well as people? (Btw, that’s not a rhetorical question)

          • Good point…I mean…I guess not….*admits defeat* 🙂

            Seriously though, I’m not sure, I’m sure someone could argue that it does.

          • As far as a person’s spiritual walk, we are either moving toward God or moving away from Him. There is no “staying where you are” in our relationship with the Lord. In addition, you are either a Christian or a non-Christian, and therefore either a servant of Christ or an enemy of Christ. There is no in-between.

            However, there are numerous things in life that are spiritually and morally neutral. Most music is not, but I would consider, in most instances, songs like “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes” to be morally neutral.

          • Yeah I totally agree….

            NEWS FLASH: Josh A, 15, of North Georgia, actually changed his mind and admitted defeat in regards to a fairly important topic. This is an extremely rare occurrence and will probably not happen again…ever. 🙂

            Thanks for the help straightening that out. 🙂 I didn’t think about that verse’s application before I posted it.

          • You’re not alone, dude. I’ve had to admit to the possibility of my being mistaken in a number of much bigger areas. The greater problem is when we’re too proud to change our minds. 🙂

          • I had the same question as Nathan. I found this article on the neutrality of music: http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/lochurch/musicneu.pdf , but it talks mostly about the music itself and not the lyrics. So is there any neutrality when it comes lyrics?- is a question I’m still wondering about. But this article made sense to me in regard to “Christian rock”, which does seem like a contradiction to me.

          • That was a good article! I used to listen to Skillet a lot. I don’t so much anymore, but I think rock music can have it’s place, depending on the message you want to say. Just like scary music in a film, if you want the listener to be unsettled by what you are saying, then perhaps rock or rap is the best way to do it. I’ve found it to be beneficial in some situations.

            I don’t know whether this will help or not, but one way to think of lyrical neutrality is to think of our speech. If I say “pizza” (first thing that came to my mind. :P), I’m not necessarily being anti-God, but then again I’m not necessarily being pro-God. It’s neutral, but it’s effect depends on my intentions in saying the word in that situation.

          • Totally. Yeah I agree with you. This was my first thought too when I read Liam’s comment. Hopefully he will explain more, I want to see where he’s coming from. Yes there are a lot of situations where it’s obviously neutral, like you said below with the “head, shoulders, knees, and toes” song, but with other music it’s not that clear, at least for me. Yes, musical lyrics can be neutral. But when does it quit becoming neutral? I’m not challenging you or anything, I’m just challenging my own viewpoint. Pretty much why I posted the question ;).

          • Yeah, there are certainly many “Christian” songs that are very difficult to determine whether they are for or against God, or just neutral. Most songs you’d hear on the radio are not neutral. The bottom line is that if you have doubts about a song, don’t listen to it. There are plenty of other songs with which you can be sure they are morally and spiritually sound.

            The way to evaluate the quality of a song is different for “Christian” songs than it is for “non-Christian” songs. There’s different protocol. If you’re wondering about a certain genre of songs (which it sounds as if you’re looking at moreso songs in general), I could offer some practical methods. But otherwise, the advice given by everybody here, as far as looking at the intentions, using Philippians 4:8, etc., are great.

          • Yes, I was talking about songs in general. Yeah there’s been some great advice on here that I will definitely use in the future! Yes, I think using Philippians 4:8 to measure our music choices by is a great challenge. Maybe each of us will interpret what is “true, noble, right, pure, lovely, etc.” differently as concerns music, just as we each make different conclusions about modesty, dancing, card playing, etc. I know a lot of people mentioned 1 Cor. 8 and 1 Cor. 10, and I totally agree with what that’s saying. Sorry I’m just thinking out loud! (or in writing, I guess :)).

          • I write out loud quite often as well! I don’t believe truth or morality is subjective, but its application in specific circumstances can be a personal choice. If you’re truly uncertain about a song, a good approach would be to print out the lyrics. Identify the worldview of the artist and who/what the artist is singing to/about. Evaluate each statement. Does each statement line up with scripture?

            We did this in an old youth group I was in. It seems like a lot of work, but it’s only for songs about which you’re unsure, and it gets easier when you get used to identifying worldviews. But in the end, it’s still you’re call; it’s not good to over-complicate things. As I said, if you have doubts about a song, there’s no sense keeping it around. And having a balance is definitely important.

            I’m not sure how much that might help; it really is a difficult issue. But it’s been a really good discussion! Thanks for submitting the question! 🙂

          • I totally agree that truth and morality is not subjective, hopefully I wasn’t inferring that. That’s a great idea! I might use it sometime :). Thanks for all the great advice!

          • Actually, now that I think about it, I was talking more about “non-Christian” songs than “Christian” songs in my previous comment (on lyrics being neutral).

          • I think a lot of Christian artists make their songs vaguely Christian, so that their Christian audience will resonate with it but their non-Christian audience won’t be “offended” by it. I read in an article somewhere that Skillet avoids saying “Jesus” in their songs (even if they are singing about Him) so that they can hopefully reach an audience with their message without shutting them down with an obvious reference to Jesus. I’m not saying I agree with that (or that I don’t, necessarily), just that it’s something that professed Christian groups do.

          • Yes I have questioned this & wonder how effective this is.
            a popular Christan group sing a song (which I find catchy) “Keep your eye on it”
            Now I understand they mean by “IT” to be “the prize” AKA Jesus’ crown, But what does that mean to a person without Christ?
            But then other songs about how we should treat each other can help those without Christ, to see God’s way, Can’t think of an example at the min…
            Ultimately, God is in control & we trust He uses all things (even the Worldly song writers) Proverbs 16:4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: … even the wicked for the day of evil.

  • I think it depends on the person. i mean really bad secular music maybe not but the not so harmless ones i think it depends on the person. i like pop and some country but i turn the channel when certain songs come on that are bad.
    ~Madeleine

  • I’m gonna say that there are Christian songs, neutral songs, and anti-Christian songs. A lot of the older music I know is not as blatantly anti-Christian as a lot of music is today. I will not listen to explicit music; that is a boundary I have set for myself. But for the more neutral stuff, I think it all depends on a person and their spiritual maturity. I understand that some Christians may want to listen to music that is not necessarily “Christian” but is not objectionable or disrespectful of God. That’s totally okay with me. We just all need to be on guard about what we listen to.

    Hope this helps.

  • I will say, I think we should be careful in our music choices. Once you allow yourself to listen to something, it can become a lot easier to start down the wrong path. And those that pointed out that music can be a stumbling block are right on. Others might not be as spiritually grounded. The choices you make affect others and the way they view things. Also we should pursue holiness, we shouldn’t see how close we can get to sin yet still be “okay”. The goal is not what can we get away with, its to live a life pleasing to God. Thats what matters in the end right?

  • Hey Riley! Nice question;) I’ve personally wondered that too. I think that really, there isn’t a distinct line between “good” and “bad” music. Music that distracts me from God, not that I necessarily have to be thinking about Him whenever I’m listening to music, but that brings me farther away from Him and gives me a guilty feeling when I’m listening to it, then yeah, that will fall in the “bad” category. Not all “romance” songs, are bad like some people said, I don’t think, but I know that others will distract from God A TON. Even if some draw the focus away from Him just a little, that is where I think we should draw the line. I know from personal experiences that songs that are even slightly off morally can easily bring me down the wrong road.

  • Think Philippians 4:8 when evaluating music, and media in general: “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” (NASB)

    There is an excellent book out there by Rick Boyer called Take Back the Land, written specifically for young people. Here are some of his insights on it:

    TRUTH. Is it really true? Does life genuinely operate in this fashion in light of God’s revelation?
    HONORABLE. This speaks of honor and dignity.
    RIGHT. Is it right according to God’s standards?
    PURITY. This also speaks of morality–contrasting what is clean, chaste, innocent, and pure with what is impure, squalid, sordid, and defiled.
    LOVELY. Beauty is in the eye of the Creator.
    OF GOOD REPUTE. The public testimony of the art and the artist.
    EXCELLENCE. Some things are good, some things are bad, and some things are excellent. What is great will stand the test of time and last.
    ANYTHING WORTHY OF PRAISE. Some things merit praise and some do not.

    My thoughts…

    Is it the truth or is it the world’s (or my) clouded perception of reality? Jesus said, “I am…the Truth.” Does it measure up?
    Is it honorable? The old hymnwriters wrote for an exalted God with exalted words. They wrote quality words that glorify God and are still around today.
    Is it pure? Or has the world crept into it? Does it even hint of impurity? Would you still listen to it if the Creator of the Universe walked up to you and asked if He could share one of your earbuds to listen in? Or would you be embarrassed?
    Is it lovely? Is it something that God would call beautiful? Or is it a distortion of true beauty?
    Is it of good repute? What does the artist’s life look like? Does it “stir you up” (encourage you) to “love and good works”? Or is it destructive–does it call up in you feelings and desires that are sinful?

    Is it excellent? You may say, yeah sure it’s good. But is it the best? Or would God say, “I have better things for you than that”?
    Is it truly worthy of praise? Is it mediocre or quality? What is the motive behind it? What is the message in it?

  • Great question, Riley!

    There isn’t really any way to determine what music is good and bad. There certainly isn’t any Bible verse you can point to and say “This beat or this instrument is evil.”

    However, the Bible does give advice about keeping our heart and thoughts clean. Which is done, (as some have mentioned) by thinking on pure, true, and lovely things (Phil. 4:8) and by actively depositing good things into our hearts and minds (Prov. 4:23).

    When listening to music:
    – Examine the content, “Is it God-honoring?” (Would you feel comfortable playing these songs for Jesus?)
    – Listen to the Spirit, “Content is good, but do I feel comfortable listening to this?”

    When examining the content, examine music the same way you examine art. Does the content of the painting honor God or is it tempting and distracting? Are all the pieces you like by painters who were Christians? Not necessarily.

    Does the music point you to Jesus? Celebrate life? Encourage healthy relationships? Does it motivate you to love and protect family? Does it evoke inappropriate images? Does it grieve sorrow, sin, and death or does it celebrate sin or ignore pain?

    These are just a few questions to ask.

  • Hi guys. I just wanted to input some of my personal thoughts and ask some questions. Music in general is a very hard thing to classify as ‘good’ or ‘bad’, but of course some individual songs and lyrics can get a little nasty or just plain wrong, and I could see these songs as ‘bad’, but defining songs as ‘Christian’ is even harder; unless, of course, you have the definition of Christian. I think a simple way to define a Christian is ‘a follower of Christ’, so If you can say that a song is ‘following Christ’, then, sure, call it Christian, but where do you stop? What would you call a lyric-less track made a band popularly know as extremely secular? What would you call lyric-less track made by your favorite trusted Christian band? What’s the difference? Is it in the music? Or maybe in the words, or the way the words come out. Like rapping, or heavy metal Christian rock. Do the words, or the sound make the difference?

  • Since the word “worship” has come up so much in the discussion (with good reason, of course), I’d suggest a book by John MacArthur that I mentioned called Worship: The Ultimate Priority. It’s very insightful! Worship is far more than music (in fact, he doesn’t even talk about music until the appendix).

  • OK there’s already a bazillion comments, arguments, etc. so I’m going to keep this short/keep my nose clean and just say that I pretty much totally agree with @christopher_witmer:disqus.

  • I would like to say that it’s not necessarily bad to listen to secular music. There’s a lot of positive music that has a good message and isn’t written or sung from a Christian. Part of it does rely on the maturity of the person. What may be a song that you don’t think much about, may be a distraction to someone else. Much like those set of verses from Paul when talking about being a stumbling block. It doesn’t mean you can’t or shouldn’t listen to the song at all, but to listen to that particular song in a more enclosed setting. For me, music can be very motivating and inspiring regardless who wrote it or why.
    Similar to what Christopher Witmer said, music is an art. Everyone takes from the song what they want and not necessarily what the artist intended. You can be inspired by a secular song to write or sing a new song for God!

    Hope this helps!

  • Okay. There’s a ton of comments here. So what I say may have already been said. So…here goes.

    Does the secular music that you’re listening to glamorize worldly things? Is it pure? Not just free of bad words, but does it truly uphold purity? Would you play it in the presence of God? Because really, you’re in his presence. Does it stir up feelings or desires for worldly things? Does it distract you at all from God?

    In my house, we haven’t ever really listened to secular music regularly. Sure, I’m familiar with what’s popular and what not, but I don’t know all the lyrics. And I’m not ashamed of that. Because honestly, like Paul says in the New Testament, “everything is permissible, but not everything is profitable.” Or something like that. Basically, listening to “good” secular music isn’t sinful. But does it bring you closer in your relationship with God?

    I’m not saying don’t listen to it at all. But I think, that with Christian music, it is the kind of music that can encourage us. I was really depressed one night and I couldn’t sleep, so I put in my Christian music radio station. I listened to the lyrics and something changed. I was putting the focus on me, not God (who life is really all about). So it reminded me how great God is and how selfish I was being…(side note: God worked in my heart through the music, it wasn’t just the music. But sometimes I feel like God isn’t gonna use a song about teenage heartbreak to encourage me.)

    Sorry this is so long, I hope it helps!

    • Right on, Amanda! When I worked as a camp counselor for a summer there were some days that it got really discouraging but in the dining hall they were always blasting songs like, “Lord I need You, oh I need You/Every hour I need You/My one defense/My righteousness/Oh God how I need You” and “I know who goes before me/I know who stands behind/The God of angel armies/Is always by my side”–songs that reminded me that if God is for us, who can be against us? and that God was the one I should turn to when I had a problem or if I was discouraged. God working through a song 🙂

  • Well you could call that my question too…
    So I really don’t have much to say on that.
    But Be careful

    Set a line and stay behind it.
    Pray to God for guidance.
    Turn away Satan because He’s as slippery as a Serpent.
    Never give up.

  • I read this earlier today and chewed on it all afternoon… I went and looked up words in my Bible like “Music”, “worship”, “world” and did some random digging in the Word. I kept coming back to the fact that we need to be focusing on God throughout our day, and that is TOP priority. I’m not saying all secular music is wrong, by any stretch of the imagination, but i know that personally, i can focus on and worship God much better when i don’t have the distractions of secular music. Hope this helps! 🙂

  • Most of what I have to say has already been said. So I’m going to keep it simple. The bible says to glorify God in All that we do, not just in some of what we do.

  • Music is one of many great things God has created
    & those who write music are expressing creativity that is inbuilt from our
    Creator.

    Music is used to evoke emotion, fast can = excitement, slow can express sadness, but this is not always the case, Fast can=panic, slow can express reverence or tenderness. The music itself only sets the stage.

    Words added to music (a song) is telling a story or perspective to the music. Some do use their gift to express awe at our great God’s creation or to worship God Himself. Some use it in a way that abhors God.

    There are some horrific lyrics out there that celebrate the sin in peoples lives(the blatantly obvious stay away from ones) but there are some out there that are not directly or deliberately provocative & do tell a story (that may or may not DIRECTLY include God)

    This is where I believe we can apply…

    Be IN the World but not OF the world… (Rom 12:2)

    There are many things we see, smell, hear that don’t directly worship God.
    Like I can walk past a bakery & smell the aroma of bread baking. It makes me
    think. “I may be hungry”, But I may have just had lunch so I don’t need it. It
    may remind me that Mum wanted me to bring home a loaf, it could just be a
    reminder that fresh baked bread is delicious;) None of those thoughts are
    directly contra to God or worshiping Him, BUT if I let it consume me, rule over
    my life, cause me to make decisions over God, then I have a problem.

    Another random thought – When someone says “I love this song” it can be a
    tool to see where someone is at, to know how to reach them for Christ….

    Any way I could add more but I think you probably see what I’m trying to
    say.

  • Should Christians listen to secular music? Not if it defiles you. Also not if it has an over-powering beat which has a semi-to-fully-hypnotic effect on the human body, and also not if it sounds identical to the building-up drumbeats which the Africans use to summon demons, because it can have the same effect. I received this advice from a man who was born in East Africa and also spent years in ministry there among the natives of Mozambique.

    • I’m not really sure how a certain kind of beat would summon demons or hypnotize someone. I would say that an apt comparison would be like saying we shouldn’t ever stretch before we exercise because stretching is sometimes similar to yoga, which is used in some religions for spiritual practices. If stretching is beneficial, by all means, do it. It’s not a religious issue. However, in some cultures (for example, in Africa), some kinds of beats would resemble the traditional religion too much and would draw people away from the truth. But in the context of Western culture, beats don’t generally have such religious meanings and are not bad in and of themselves.

  • The rule I use to decide what music to listen to is, does the music drive away the spirit or invite the spirit. If the music drives away the Holy Ghost that is music to stay away from, otherwise it is fine or even good to listen to music. Fast music can motivate you and make you feel good.

  • Ask yourself some questions first.
    Does this music glorify God?
    If the lyrics of the song glorify things other than God you shouldn’t be listening to it.
    Is this music going to affect me?
    Although we tell ourselves that the words of the song won’t affect us and we will just listen to the rythm that is much easier said than done. Especially if it has a catchy tune, we catch onto the words just like that! and if the lyrics are not God-glorifying……

    I think you could find some great upbeat Christian artists too. They have like every genre of Christian music out there.:)

  • I believe it IS okay to listen to secular music… but NOT without boundaries!

    Is it okay to watch secular movies? Yes, but NOT without boundaries! Is it okay to read secular books? Yes, but NOT without boundaries!

    The bigger issue here is that sadly many Christians DO NOT take the time to set boundaries for themselves. And furthermore DO NOT surround themselves with like-minded people. Instead of looking for friends “with benefits” you should be looking for friends “with bounderies”!

    How do you create those boundaries? Read your Bible and Pray EVERYDAY… It will condition you! Instead of memorizing the lyrics to your favorite secular song… memorize Scripture! When you are immersed in TRUTH… a LIE won’t be able to slip past in the form of a song, movie, or book!

    And for those “gray” areas mentioned above… as a “rule of thumb” if you’re not sure whether you should be listening to a song or not… just choose NOT to listen! 9 times out of 10 you’ll be right. And for that leftover 1… you’re not going to die because of 1 song. GOD hates lukewarm… Rev 3:15-16. So make a choice, create boundaries, and stick to them! 😉

  • I only try to listen the music that glorifies God and who he is but before i watched this video 6 months ago i didn’t really care much. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgvxrUUMLm4
    I really think especially in church we should only sing songs with words that glorifies God. And outside of church we should still be care full what we listen to.We as christian’s need to put boundaries in place for our own good and stick to them.

    You can also ask these questions
    Will this bring me closer to God or make me drift further away?
    Does this benefit me in anyway?

  • I think there’s nothing wrong with listening to music that doesn’t explicitly mention God. Can’t music be positive affecting and uplifting without mentioning God every five seconds? Of course as others have mentioned there do need to be boundaries. I just feel like we don’t have to only listen to music that has “Christian” on the label.

  • What matters is if it makes you better as a person. There’s some music which doesn’t. The music that beats you down, or is just a trash song. It doesn’t matter if the song is Christian or secular as long as it builds you up to be better than you were before.

  • I can’t believe this is even a question. I come back to these groups occasionally just to see how far I’ve come since my teens.

    This question isn’t even phrased as it should. It’s so open ended. “Should Christians listen to music” might as well be “should Christians eat bananas?”

    In what regard? And why are we bunching all of secular music into one category? I’m personally offended when I see indie put into the same group as country (ewwww!!) Additionally, not all Christians must have the same standards. It might depend on the person!

    So, be specific and don’t put everyone into a box.

    • I think I completely agree, it really does depend on the person. Also, if you’re a teen living under your parents roof and your parents don’t want you to listen to secular music, then you should obey the commands of God and honor your parents, whom have been placed by God in authority over you.

  • Hey guys, I thought that I would throw this question out, and see what you think. I would ask myself this question, lets say that you went up to be with our Lord, would you play secular music then?

    • Given the choice between secular and Christian music? Of course I’d pick songs that praise Him in His presence! However, you’ll need to qualify what you mean by “secular music”… Music that doesn’t mention Jesus’s name at all? Music that blatantly curses God and worships worldly things? Because if your definition of “secular music” is just music that is neither filling the mind with ungodly intentions nor outright worshipping God, you might as well ask people who ride unicycles as a hobby if they’d ride unicycles in heaven. The pastime itself isn’t sinful nor is it a clear act of worship. Plus, would we even have the chance to “play secular music” in the presence of a holy God or pedal around on one wheel when we get to heaven? There are probably other things we’d rather do after meeting Jesus face to face 🙂

      • Good point. When I say ” Secular Music”, I don’t mean music that doesn’t say Jesus, or God’s name in them. What I mean is music that curses God.

        • Not to contradict you or anything, but anything that isn’t Christian music would be classified as secular. So anything as harmless as a folk song would still be defined as secular. So then secular music can’t be completely written off as “bad” music. Reiterating someone else’s comment, you just have to set boundaries based on how you believe the Holy Spirit is directing you. However, given the choice between God honoring music and simply moral, but secular music, I would definitely choose God honoring. Music should be used as a form of worshipping God, not merely entertainment. If it accomplishes both purposes, that’s the best kind of music to listen to. Or sing.

  • hello, nice to greet them. I think what appeals not to build our inner life, and does not bring glory to God. No doubt should not be practiced. The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life is not from the Father but from the world. Ijn215-17

  • I think that, as long as it is not disgusting or stupid, secular music is fine. Christian artists have songs that do not mention Christ, like What Faith Can Do by Kutless. I still like their band and music…

  • Jon Foreman, the lead singer of popular Alt Rock band Switchfoot, says this regarding music “I’m actually hoping to use music as a vehicle to look for answers. None of the questions I’m asking are rhetorical. Like, for example, in the song ‘Vice Verses’ I’m asking, ‘Where’s God in earthquake and where’s God in the genocide?’ Those are real questions – the questions we ask in our songs are just as important as the answers we give.” I believe music, like any other art, is a way of expressing. Weather you are expressing or listening to someone express God, relationships, or deep questions, you should make sure that it is in an uplifting way. Secular music is something that Christians run from. But just because someone has the “secular label” doesn’t mean that it is all wrong. Same as if someone has the “christian label’ but yet they use profanity and suggestive themes in their songs.

  • “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” Matthew 12:34
    Jesus said these words. I believe that if you are putting music that doesn’t glorify God into your mind it goes directly to your heart and will be translated to your actions. Satan used to lead the choirs in heaven before he got kicked out so be careful when it comes to music. Satan is the master of it and if you give him anyway to come into your music and come into your life he will find it. That goes for lukewarm (nuetral) music and actual music that talks about sin.

    • I agree with you that we should be very careful not to let Satan into our lives through the music we listen to. I hadn’t heard about Satan leading choirs in heaven, so I looked it up. Apparently the reference is from Ezekiel 28:13, translated like this in KJV:

      “The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes
      Was prepared for you on the day you were created.”

      It’s almost certain that this phrase is talking about Satan, however, the text only says that he had instruments. Since all the angels constantly sing praises to God, does this really mean that he was leading them?
      In the ESV, the same section is translated:

      “…crafted in gold were your settings and your engravings. On the day that you were created they were prepared.”

      The translators’ note says that the meaning of the part that references music in the KJV is unclear, hence the differing translation.

      In short, I don’t think we have reason to believe Satan led music before he left heaven. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be vigilant, as he can still use music against us. However, I don’t think that he is the master of it any more than he is master of anything else in this world.

      For God is the King of all the earth;
      sing praises with a psalm!
      God reigns over the nations;
      God sits on his holy throne.

      -Psalm 47:7-8 ESV

  • Also there are two types of music, there is Music and Secular Music. “Christian” music is what God intended not what we created it to be. Secular Music is God’s intended purpose for music, that was overtaken with the word and the flesh. We sometimes get the misconception that Music was turned to Christian music after it started as Secular. God created music for the sole purpose of glorifying him (this doesn’t retain to styles because God can be in any style of music) and just like our sin ruined his perfect world, it ruined our music and that’s where secular music came from. So when an Music artist says he makes “Music” not “Christian” music, this is the point that they are referencing.

  • Maybe we should be afraid of these questions.
    Or the way these questions are phrased.
    Instead of asking “Should Christians listen to secular music” I think maybe we should ask, “Can you help me glean from the Bible whether I should listen to secular music or not?” Because we could run into the problem that each man does what they believe is right in their own eyes.
    For me this is an honest to God struggle. I do believe that there is some uplifting secular music. You Lift Me Up is one example of this. A secular song that sounds so much like it’s speaking about God that before I was told otherwise, I thought it actually was. Then there’s Christian artists like Relient K and Britt Nicole, who in their music, if you weren’t the Christian audience their music was aimed towards, you might not be able to tell whether they were singing about God or a significant other. I myself actually get hooked by secular music that is not uplifting and definitely does not share godly or Biblical values, like Taylor Swift’s Blank Space and Katy Perry’s Dark Horse. I think we need to be very careful to, if we do listen to this kind of music, that the message does not influence our thinking, to the point where we’re lead away from God’s best. And I have actually dealt with that incorrect influence being very strong in my life in my personal experience a while back.
    So just. Be careful. Do what the Holy Spirit urges you. Pay attention to your conscience. Read what the Bible has to say. And pray. Make sure whatever you do, you do it to the glory of God, and worry more about what God says, whether it’s yes or no, than what others might say.

  • Every kind of music you listen to glorifies either God or man. If it’s not glorifying God, then you shouldn’t be listening to it. Plain and simple. All Satan needs is a little crack in your armor, and next thing you know you’re doing the things in those songs that you just “like the beat to”. Really if given pen and paper you could write most if not all the lyrics down.

  • Others have said some really good stuff, so I won’t restate what they’ve already said. But I will add that listening to secular music with discernment is a very good exercise. Figuratively speaking, you’re listening to the world’s heartbeat by listening to what they’re singing about. It helps you to be better equipped to understand what others around you are thinking and feeling and it gives you a platform to be able to reach them where they’re at and communicate Christ to them in an accesible way.

  • I know I’m late to the party (I’ve missed these DQs while I’ve been away! Although it’s probably good for me – taking a break, making sure I don’t get addicted :P), and there’s also 232 comments. Thus, I shan’t look through all the comments, and I shan’t go to the effort of expressing my long-winded opinion here, since I think it’s what a lot of other people have said. But this does make me think (again) Riley! But can I just say: the very fact that you are asking this question, shows that you’re heart’s right. Which is extremely important. It also reduces the risk of you choosing something harmful. Which is good. 🙂 So good on you.

  • Here’s the deal…. Is listening to secular music a sin? NO! However, you do need to draw a line for yourself and decide what is okay to listen to and what is too far. And as long as you are maintaining a steady walk with God (i.e. praying, reading your bible, personal devos, bible study with friends, interacting with your church body, etc.) and are aware that some secular songs talk about things that we are not to do as Christians, then it is completely okay to listen to secular music. Heck, put in the right context, some secular songs can be used to evangelize to those who aren’t saved. Proof of point: http://youtu.be/OQ3k8jhSxsc.

    So long story short, listening to secular music is most definitely okay as long as you stay rooted in God’s teaching as well as God’s word.

    • Hey that’s a really cool Idea Josh!! i havn’t checked out your video but i will soon. i think that’s a really great way to evangelize by using things the world uses to bring them back to Christ. (if that makes sense). Keep up the good work!!
      God Bless,
      ~Madeleine

  • I think it’s okay to listen to most secular music out there. Just never fall into legalism because legalism can lead you down guilt-trips and make you feel like there’s only one right way to do things (in some cases there is but I mean in everyday choices). Legalism is evil. Obeying God is not though, there is a difference.
    God created music for us to enjoy. It’s a complicated mixture of resonances, soundwaves, mathematical equations and emotion. Music is a beautiful thing, so I don’t think God would give is something so great and then say, “Now only make music with such and such qualities!”. Because music is creative and humans NEED outlets for creativity. Not all of our inspiration may come directly from the bible.
    All that being said, I think what Elizabeth said was right too, boundaries are important. There is a point where creating music crosses a line from just creativity to sinful thinking/behavior. I guess what I’m trying to say is if you’re questioning whether or not you should be listening to a certain secular artist just bring it to God.

    2 Corinthians 10:5
    We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,

  • I don’t even listen to music with singing in it anymore. I just listen to cinematic, soundtrack type music – which can be fun to listen to while writing stories and such.
    If you can glorify God through secular music somehow, then I think it’s fine.

  • Hey that’s a really good point you made Stephen! i think it’s ok to listen to some secular music as long as it doesn’t go against what boundaries and beliefs you have. (does that make sense?)
    God Bless,
    ~Madeleine

  • Whoa… The Rebelution has gotten a lot bigger than it used to be. [247 comments?!!] Which is a good thing 🙂

    On the subject of secular music, here’s a few basics.
    God wants us to glorify Him in everything we do, say and think, right? Legalism probably doesn’t do that, but listening to worldly music doesn’t either. Therefore: “In everything you do, whether in word or in deed, do it all to the name of the Lord Jesus Christ giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” (Colossians 3:17)

    So, can a moving classical work glorify God? Absolutely. Can an epic soundtrack mix do the same? What about a jazz tune? Well, if it isn’t pulling your heart away from God, possibly. Music is meant as a form of using our talents to make a joyful noise to God. Therefore, if a certain song that isn’t under the Christian genre is moving or wonderful, glorify God! Granted, there is a point where you really can’t praise God because of what kind of music it is. That is where you have to put your foot down.

    The main thing, is to keep the main thing the main thing. Got it? Confused yet? So am I. What’s the main thing? Your relationship with God, and your witness to others. In other words, Guard Your Heart. Yes, those are capital letters. SCARY, I know, but they are meant for emphasis. Don’t let any kind of music steal your heart away from God. If that happens, you’ve fallen into a problem of idolatry, which is a whole other problem.

    Back to music, just listen to the Lord. If you feel that listening to a certain type of music is bad, don’t listen to it. If you feel you can worship God with Bach or Zimmer listen to it. Do what is God’s Best for You. Not God’s good, or God’s better, but God’s Best. If you are doing what God wants you to be doing, He will make you paths straight, even if you’re wandering.

    Carrying on,
    Caleb

    “Not all who wander are lost” J.R.R. Tolkien

  • I think it all depends.
    If you are listening to a song and you hear the soft voice of the Holy Spirit saying you shouldn’t be listening, then you need to turn it off. Of course, there are secular songs that have lyrics that are obviously very bad. Then again, there are many songs in the “gray area”. So, like I said, it all depends on what you feel God does and does not want you to listen to.

    On the other end of things, I think a lot of people get too uptight about not listening to all secular music, saying that any song that doesn’t mention God shouldn’t be listened to. That’s fine, but in my opinion, listening to secular songs could also be a great witnessing opportunity. If you never know or listen to “secular” songs, non-believers may become completely against becoming a believer because they think they won’t be able to listen to any songs other than hymns, for example.
    I listen to a lot of both God-honoring and secular bands/songs, and I think it’s a cool testimony to other people when you are jamming out to say, a Taylor Swift song with them, and then “Talk Dirty” comes on and you politely ask to skip the song, etc.

    This shows your non-believing friend that you’ll listen to “okay” secular songs, but you also have boundaries.
    That’s my opinion 🙂

  • “Let them praise his name with dancing and make music to him.” (Psalm 149: 3)

    I strongly believe God placed music and sound, for that matter, as a beautiful way to express ourselves, for our enjoyment, communication, and ultimately to worship Him. Yes, there is good and bad music out there. When it comes to secular music I don’t think we should automatically consider it all bad music. There is a good part of secular music that has good moral values to the song or is just fun to listen to. However, I do think we should be cautious to how we let certain types of secular music influence our lives. In the music industry now there are a lot of false truths about “love” and what society considers “fun” or “acceptable.” As Christians we need to listen to the Holy Spirit in the way of directing our ears and hearts.

    I have grown up listening to Christian music and got into secular music more during my pre-teen years. Now I feel myself being drawn into listening to secular music more and more but I’ve found most of the music’s lyrics to leave a bad taste in my mouth. I’ve started to limit my amount of time listening to the false truths kind of secular music but I still listen to the more clean/positive secular music from time to time.

    For those of you who listen to secular music daily I suggest you challenge yourself to listen to only Christian music for one month. It can no doubt change your look on life and strengthen your faith in God! I for one find God talking to me through Christian music and can not tell you how many times the perfect song has placed on the radio in my time of need. God is so good so don’t be afraid to set the “false truths” types of secular music aside for the time being to worship and build your faith in the Lord! 😀

  • I think listening to (some sorts of) secular music isn’t all wrong, but often those kinds of songs don’t really have a message, and you have the chance to lose your borders, that’s why I only listen to christian music, I don’t think that non-christian music could bring you closer to God than christian music can..

  • Plain and simple, I don’t listen to secular music. I hear just enough of it in public places to know I don’t want to hear anymore. Give me Casting Crowns any day. I don’t have much experience in this secular music thing, so I won’t debate right/wrong. Remember Philippians 4:8

    Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

  • Let’s put a twist on this question. Say that you were married and your loving spouse adored you…Or at least that’s what they said. But almost every word that came out of their mouth was about some other woman (or man, as the case may be). Wouldn’t you start to question their love towards you? I mean if they truly loved you, then you would be the center of the conversation. But wait, maybe it is legalistic to desire your spouses full attention.

    Isn’t this (in a flawed analogy way) what we are doing? Music is such a huge part of the cultural teen. We love the latest beat. But as Christians we are the bride of Christ. He is our one desire. Every time we are captivated by this world, our eyes are turned from Him.
    Now, not all secular music is wrong. I’m sure that somewhere there is some song that has no other motives besides just being a song. But I for one, wouldn’t want to waist my time on song like this. Every moment should have a purpose and not be spent listening to purposeless songs. Too often though, these “just songs” have other motives and morals that slowly penetrate us through the lyrics that we are singing.
    So I’m in the same boat with a lot of y’all. It’s really easy to flick on the top hots station when driving around town. It’s hard to be a Christian and be a teenager (in the worldly definition). But, I would dare to say that isn’t room for both. One of them has to give. I hope that all of us will see that we must Honor God above everything else! If this means that I protect my ears now and don’t spend my time listening to the junk on the radio, what is that in comparison to eternity? This is hard (at least for me) to do, but I think in the end it will be worth it.
    (Thank you for asking the question and giving me the reason to sit down and think through what I believe.)

    • Abigail, I love how much you want to honor God! It’s really cool that you are a teenager with this outlook. But I would like to share a different side of your approach. I don’t want to start an argument or show everyone how right I am because that is wrong and stupid. Philippians 4:8 says, “Finally, brothers,
      whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is
      pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any
      excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”(ESV) Here it doesn’t say whatever is “of God” or “christian,” although they would be included in this list. There are many secular songs out there that are commendable, pure, excellent, and worthy of praise, just as there many that aren’t. We are told to think about the good things, even if they aren’t christian.

      This is for multiple reasons. One is that God created all good things, he created music and wants us to enjoy it, so if a secular song is good, we can listen to it. Of course christian songs are wonderful to listen to and should be heard often. Another reason is for reaching out to the lost. This might sound stupid, but stay with me, if we shut ourselves out from the world, how can we reach it? We are in the world but not of it. We can relate more to people and other teens, but still stand out in a good way, by not listening to sinful music. As Christians, we should only care what God thinks of us and not other people, and we shouldn’t compromise out faith by enjoying secular music or relating to other teens. But if Paul didn’t go to cities that weren’t of God, the people there would have never been saved. He didn’t join them in their sin, but was with them and learned about their lives and shone the light of Christ. We are called to do the same.

      Good music should ultimately point us to Christ, whether or not it’s explicitly christian, and not point us to the world and sinful things. Here is a link to a sermon all about this >http://www.covfel.org/sermon/worship/

      Jesus is the only reason I am able to do anything, including write this. His love and grace saved me and continue to help me every day. I am sinful, and I’m not perfect just as no one else is. Therefore, I am not the ultimate authority, God is, as you know. Thanks!

      God Bless.

      • Hey Kaylee, thank you for the comment. I agree that we are to honor Christ in everything we do and listening to music is no exception. Sometimes we pit “Christian” versus “secular”. However, more correct labels might be, “God honoring” and “worldly”. There is some secular music that is better than “Christian”. And we are, by no means, to ignore these songs just because they aren’t “Christian”.
        So, I am sorry if I miscommunicated that good virtues can only be found in “Christian” songs. Personally, I enjoy listening to music that is God honoring, but it doesn’t have to hold the label “Christian”. Just when dealing with these secular songs I am more wary (as I know the great trap they can be), so I generally stay in the “Christian” category. But with that said, give me a good country or soul song any day ;).
        I think I understand where you were going with Paul. I worked a summer job in a very nonChristian and proTeen environment. The music that was played reflected those values (or lack there of). Just because they played bad music and spoke in a less than God honoring manner, I didn’t have a God given license to not go to work. Yet while I was circled by this atmosphere, I was called to not fall into their traps.
        Thank you for helping me clarify on these things. Have a wonderful day!

        For further reference, here are some verses that have helped me on this subject.

        “Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is good, pleasing, and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)
        “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away, and look, new things have come. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
        “For am I now trying to win the favor of people, or God? Or am I striving to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a slave of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10)
        “… but be filled by the Spirit: speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making music from your heart to the Lord.” (Ephesians 5:18b-19)
        “But you, man of God, run from these things, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance, and gentleness.” (1 Timothy 6:11)
        “Flee from youthful passions, and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.” (2 Timothy 2:22)
        “Do not love the world or the things that belong to the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him. For everything that belongs to the world-the lust of the flesh the lust of the eyes and the pride in one’s lifestyle-is not from the Father, but is from the world. And the world with its lust is passing away, but the one that who does God’s will remains forever.” (1 John 2:15-17)
        “So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I am going to vomit you out of My mouth.” (Revelation 3:16)

        • Hi again! Well I find that really cool that you consider music like that Christian. Thinking about it, it totally makes sense, because God made that music and it honors Christ. Its also a beautiful way to look at the world. I mean we do need to see the sin in the world, to see the need for Jesus, but that is so positive and a encouraging to think about.

          Thank you for replying to me. You are so awesome because I can tell you see the need to not be in the norm as a teen and to take time to focus only on God and keep your relationship with Him in the back of your mind all the time. I also really appreciate the politeness in your answer to me. Its funny, most comment sections in the secular world are filled with negative, rudely opinionated, and ignorant people and their not thought out answers, especially when it comes to teenagers. But this blog definitely stands out (in a good way of course.) And you are much wiser than those people.

          Those Bible verses are great and a good reminder that as Christians, we are different to the rest of the world. Even though we might not seem different to someone randomly passing by, it shows in our lives and can help lead others to be changed from the norm as well.

          God Bless and thanks!

  • Lots of good opinions have already been said so this won’t be long, but I think this is a very interesting question and is something I’ve often thought about. I love music, all kinds ,and while I don’t think it’s necessarily wrong to listen to secular music I must make sure that I have boundaries where I draw the line. I mostly just listen to Air 1( my favorite radio station) and from there I find a lot a awesome music from really talented artists. There are a few secular songs that I also enjoy listening to, but when I feel like a certain song is crossing the boundary then I need to turn it off. This also goes for tv and books. I just need to make sure that what I intake doesn’t harm me spiritually.

  • I enjoy catchy, “gray area” pop music as well and personally the only problem I have with it is that I find myself not wanting to listen to as much worship or christian music. I get the tunes stuck in my head and want to hear more of them instead taking time to worship. I tend to get distracted just in general, so this includes getting distracted from worshiping God. So I have to be careful how much secular music I listen too, even if there is nothing bad about it. So as long as you listen to good christian music that makes you want to worship Him, listening to clean secular music isn’t going to hurt.

    As a a christian I find it encouraging when a secular/popular artist comes out with a moral/clean/song with a good message. Its nice because you will probably hear it in a grocery store/in public and not have to block out the lyrics.

    • That happens to me a lot too. I usually give myself a limit and once I reach that limit I almost “ban” pop music for a little while, just to get back into the christian world. If that makes any sense at all.

  • …And let lay aside every weight, AND the sin which doth so easily beset us. Hebrews 12:1 That verse isn’t just talking about sins. There’s things like listening to “okish” music that aren’t necessarily sins. But as Christians, if things in our life pull us away from God, “weights”, the answer is pretty simple. Also, as Christians, we are in every sense of the word to be striving to be “Christlike.” To me, that means if Jesus wouldn’t hum or sing along to a song, neither should we. So you be your own judge. Same with books, when I read a lot of thrilling exciting modern books, my “weights”, I didn’t feel nearly as ready to read the Bible or do devotions. And some ppl aren’t going to like this comment but that’s okay.

  • I recently went to a concert on Lecrae’s ANOMALY tour. My friends and I bought
    Deluxe passes, so we got to show up early and listen to Andy Mineo do like a Q&A beforehand. He got asked a question similar to this one, and I loved his response. He said that it is a matter of the maturity of your faith, and used himself as an example, saying something to the effect of he grew up and lives around people who are not believers and do not live like believers. As a result, he has developed a kind of in-one-ear-out-the-other filter for things like cussing and vulgarity. So he said that music that contains mild cursing/suggestive themes does not affect him. I don’t agree 100% with that, but h is point was what you listen to is up to what you think you can handle without it having a profound effect on your faith. I know for me, I’m nearly 16 and I am still goaded into cursing by music. Secular music is not inherently evil, but you have to remember that the artists in that genre do not ask themselves “Does this music honor God?” when they are creating music. So in conclusion, I think what you listen too is determined by kind of personal barriers. Of course, you never want to make big decisions alone, so maybe like as a friend or parent and talk it over with them. Ultimately though, it comes down to are you feeling convicted by the music you listen to? If you can answer yes, you may want to retool your playlists a bit

  • There are already so many opinions on here. I figure, why not one more?
    I personally only listen to Christian hip hop (i.e. Lecrae and Andy Mineo, like @disqus_4KQX3xGfSf:disqus), but I will admit that sometimes there is a secular song that I like. I think that it is indeed wrong to listen to music with cuss words or sexually suggestive stuff in it. We are to strive to be Christ-like, and we completely abandon that when we listen to bad music. I do believe, though, that it is fine to listen to fun and meaningless songs (i.e. Radioactive, Harlem Shake, ect. This is just what comes to my mind when I think of meaningless songs.). However we don’t have any growth when we listen to that stuff. I prefer to learn something from my songs; that they would be encouraging, provoking, and eye opening.
    Also, when I personally start to listen to secular music more, it turns my desire for christian music off. I had to delete an entire Spotify playlist (there were sixty songs on there, man!) because I only had a desire for that type of music. I’m personally convicted not to listen to secular music and try to stay away from it.

    • Exactly! Yahh know I think that this is the discussion topic that people are most diverse in their opinions in. But I agree 95 percent with your comment. lol The only thing I have against it is this: If we’re striving to be Christ-like, we need to ask would Christ listen to “meaningless” songs? For me I kinda doubt it. “Meaningless” is a word that both the Bible and Do Hard Things seem to oppose. Yes?

      • Right. I agree! My point was I don’t really feel conviction over these meaningless songs, but I dont seek these songs out on my spotify or anything. If my softball team wants to play the Harlem Shake before a softball game to get us pumped, Im fine with it. However Idont go home and listen to these songs, but rather songs with value and knowledge; songs that draw me closer to God.
        I dont think I worded my other comment very well on this. It wasnt really whatI was trying to say. Sorry about that :);)

        • Haha oh okay, gotcha. Oh cool I love soft-ball, well base-ball anyway. lol So what R some of your favorite groups, bands etc? And it’s fine I do it ALL the time on this site. 😛

          • Baseball rocks! I like a lot of artists/bands. I enjoy Lecrae, Andy Mineo, and basically everyone from the 1-1-Six Clique. I also like bands such as Skillet, Thousand Foot Krutch, and POD. My favorite band since I was 7 (I’m almost 15 now) is Family Force 5. All of this music can be kinda controversial in the Christian music world, but thats probably a different discussion for a different time.
            I also enjoy stuff thats a wee bit more contemporary. For King and Country, Rend Collective (I know them pretty well!), and NeedToBreathe are all groups that I like.
            You?

          • Haha I know right? Oh wow, I think I like most of those actually, except I don’t like Skillet. And I like For King and Country, Mathew West, Il Divo, (you probably don’t know who that is), Josh Groban, some of Lyndsey Stirling, and stuff like that. If you don’t know some of them look them up and than tell me what you think. 🙂

          • One of the few artists my mom and I both like – she’s into worship music, while I’m into harder stuff from Tobymac to some Red.

          • Haha yeah basically all of my 8 sibs like him, wich is pretty crazy cuzz we’re all way different from the others! And yeah I heard Red live at Winter Jam and didn’t like them very much. I just walked out and looked at the booths with my girl until they were done, but still had fun. lol But yeah Tobymac I like. 🙂

          • You have 8 siblings?! I have seven, nine if you count in-laws. If you average that out, that comes out at eight. Are you sure we aren’t twins?
            You were at Winter Jam?? Lucky… if I lived there I’d be going! And I was thinking of the wrong group – I meant Skillet. Although there’s a couple of songs from Red that I like, they’re harder than I appreciate in general. (And a little depressing, ya know?) Yeah, I can see looking at booths being fun if you have good company.
            I forgot, or I didn’t ask – how old are you? I’m sixteen. And if you’re sixteen, this is gonna be CRAZY!

          • Haha yep! you know I think that we very well may be twins. I’m not 100 percent convinced either way yet! Yeah the last time I went was in 2013 and I haven’t gone since, I’ve seen reasons not to. And oh gotcha, yeah I used to like them but now I’m kinda like neutral I guess. And yeah totally agree? Mhmm it was. Surprisingly enough, I wasn’t even saved at that point and now I disagree with dating that young. Haha Oh, too bad, know we know that we’re not twins, I’m 14, 15 in May. Well ain’t that a bummer?~!

          • What reasons have you seen for not going? All I know is that it’s a concert with mostly cool bands.

            Yeah, I was kinda surprised that you said you were looking with you girl, but the way you phrased it you looked like you didn’t really like that anymore. What are your philosophies on dating now?
            Ya know, we should move this over to another thread so we stop spamming this one. Do you know the blog “Soldiers of God”?

          • Well, it’s mostly a lot of personal convictions that might not apply to most, and I’m sure many(even on this site!) would think it’s a little too conservative. Yes, good incite, I was just going to Winter Jam for the thrill and because I had friends going with me as well as a girlfriend. I, now that I’m saved, find dating before you’re serious about it and “testing” the person for a potential marriage possibility, to be quite frankly a waste of time, and I have decided not to date until I’m in college. Because contrary to the ideas of this generation, dating should be a “free-trial” of marriage, not to do it just to fulfill our human desires for companionship. And yes I do. Let’s! Reply to this message on that blog I guess?

          • not to butt in… buy yeah same here! my mom likes guys like big daddy weave and the like… i like them too but i enjoy christian rock/rap/techno more…

          • What are some bands you like? You too, @disqus_clxqoYwM08:disqus I’m trying to find some good, current-sounding songs for something. (Harder is probably better too.)

          • tobymac, switchfoot, dc talk, and guys like that are awesome. friend me on facebook and look at my spotify playlist

          • Can’t friend you – don’t have Facebook. Your name’s Nathan McCoy, right? I’ll look it up tomorrow 🙂
            (Reply to this so I remember, will ya? I forget EVERYTHING!)

          • just click on the ‘view all suggestions’ and scroll thru till u find me. it helps a lot when ur friends with me on facebook when tryin to find playlists on spotify…. i will c what i can do for u

          • I find you through the link, but it’s weird… I don’t see any public playlists through the normal icon. You’re the only Nathan McCoy who’s following/followed by your sister, right?

          • Yeah, some people like Skillet, some don’t. It just depends on taste. 🙂 I actually like all of those artists! (except Il Divo, I’m not sure who they are.) Matthew West’s song Do Something really inspires me.

          • Ok, I thought I replied to this but can’t find it so forgive me if this is the second time!(Yeah, well that’s good to hear, and you should look Il Divo up and tell me what you think. They’re a very select taste so you may not like them but than again crazy things have happened!(me for example) 😉 haha Oh yes I like that song~!

          • Haha good! I can never tell. 😉 And np, me and my family like them a lot. 🙂 Well consider yourself…hmmm explored??? lol

  • There is a difference between what’s right and wrong and what’s beneficial (1 Corinthians 10:23) Is it wrong for Christians to listen to secular music? As long as it doesn’t contain inappropriate content, no. I don’t think it’s wrong. If, however, the songs you are listening to have very little meaning to them and are more full of “fluff,” there are probably better things you could be listening to. There are a lot of songs out there that while they may not be definitively “Christian” songs, they actually have a fairly good message. On the other hand, there are also technically “Christian” songs out there that have a pretty shallow message and aren’t particularly beneficial either. I personally have chose not to listen to secular music because I would rather be spiritually encouraged by the songs that I listen to. I don’t think it’s wrong to listen to secular music, but I would challenge anyone struggling with this question to evaluate the message that the songs they listen to convey. It’s probably a better use of your time and resources to be listening to music that is uplifting and glorifying to God rather than songs that don’t have much meaning to them.

    • Great comment. Very accurate. Some comments seem to have “excuses” why it’s not wrong to listen to fluffy “gray area” music and they probably don’t realize it. And that’s very inconsistent with what a Christian is and should be. (Not preaching at anyone just saying it the way it comes to my mind.)

    • My feelings exactly. Well said!
      As an example, I personally don’t like Francesca Battistelli that much, because the lyrics seem somewhat self focused, even though she is a Christian Artist.

  • I personally don’t think “gray area” music is bad to listen to, but I don’t listen to it that often because there are so many better alternatives! I love listening Tobymac, Lecrae, Capital Kings, Owl City, Royal Tailor, Hillsong Young and Free, etc… They glorify God AND sound awesome!!! 😀

  • The grey is not the way. God says that He spits out the lukewarm (The grey area). I just recently found some very troubling news about Katy Perry. She was raised in a Christian environment but when she grew up she left that and became one of the most demonic women in the world. I watched a video where she said “I deny Christ to live for satan.” I was shocked! But before that in my book she fell in the grey area. That was an eye opener to me.

  • There is a line where we need to stop. But, just because there is a song that doesn’t mention God or isn’t Christian based does not mean that it’s wrong. For instance, macklemore’s song, “can’t hold us”, it is definitely not a Christian song, but I don’t think that it’s a bad song to listen to.

    • Agreed, but I also think we should look into what the particular artist believes or supports before we just listen to something that may sneak in things that are not healthy for our soul.
      For example, you wouldn’t want to support an artist that donates millions of dollars to a homosexual group, or something of the like.
      Am I wrong here? Correct me if I am.

      • That is actually a thought I have been wrestling with a lot, is it right to support companies that support homosexuality? A lot of big brands have put out commercials featuring such relationships (Gap, Starbucks, Target, Burger King). I really don’t know. Sorry to be so off topic, but if anyone has any thoughts, I’d like to hear ’em:)

        • That’s where it gets so hard… I personally don’t buy anything from JC Penny anymore because they donate to Planned Parenthood, but there are so many brands that support homosexuality now that it’s hard to buy anything anymore without supporting one wrong thing or another. Can’t help you, but I have the same question 🙂
          (FYI I find abortion to be worse than homosexuality, that’s why I used JC Penny as my example.)

          • Wow I did not know that about JC Penny thank you so much for pointing that out. That’s really a shame, I monogram towels for an orphanage and they have a great color selection, I will have to pray about that. I had never thought before just now about how so many companies support Susan G Komen, and that organization donates a lot to Planned Parenthood. Do you know of any other companies that support PP? You know how we admire abolitionists for all that they did? There’s a part of me that wants to be like that, and there’s another part that wants life to be easy. But Paul did say to eat meat that had been sacrificed to idols… idk. Sorry-thinking out loud:)

          • Interesting quote by a guy who was eventually executed for opposing the Third Reich. “Where does the truth lie? Should one go off and build a little house with flowers outside the windows and a garden outside the door and extol and thank God and turnone’s back on the world and its filth? Isn’t seclusion a form of treachery of desertion? I’m weak and puny, but I want to do what is right.”

          • Ooh, that’s a hard one. How could we be okay with supporting such companies? I agree that PP is worse, but both are sin.
            @Brett Harris
            what are your thoughts on this issue?

          • I did earlier this week, but if you or anybody else want to submit the topic go ahead you may’ve thought of something I hadn’t:)

          • @disqus_9p1eGFJkII:disqus @mimeforjesus:disqus
            Why don’t you submit this for everyone to answer?

            That was me below, but something did’t work.

          • I don’t think they directly support PP, it’s just SGK. But yeah, it’s sad. (You notice that after they started supporting SGK, their business went downhill…)

        • I don’t think it’s right to defend them for their position, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t buy things from them. If we tried to pick and choose where we shop based on the company’s positions on gay marriage and abortion, I think that we would basically have nowhere left and we would be forced to be completely self-sufficient (except maybe for Chick-fil-A). Yet I do feel guilty purchasing from a company that effectively pays for babies to be killed.

          • That’s true it’s an almost impossible position to maintain. Really if a pure standard were to be kept, we would have to nix taxes (which the Bible clearly says are to be paid) and most healthcare. It’s a very sticky situation. I guess it would depend on how much of the proceeds was going to abortion/homosexuality. Course then, I’m still funding an abortion, just a smaller part of one:/

      • I’ve really only listened to christian music, but I believe that if it doesn’t honor God it’s not nesisary. After all, what are we doing on this earth? I don’t think its to listen to pop music! We are here to spread the gospel!!

        • I’m not disagreeing, but listening to Christian Music doesn’t spread the Gospel either, especially certain “Christian” songs that are nearly indistinguishable from secular music.
          For Example (Not saying that these are bad):
          Hold Me – Jamie Grace
          Eye On It – TobyMac (This one creeps me out, check the official music video; I actually think there might be something going on with TobyMac)
          By Your Side – Tenth Avenue North (I actually really like this song)
          Draw Me Close – Many Versions (I know, this one is a common worship song)

          • That depends on how you look at it, I have some friends that with the music and message combined got saved.

          • I guess some songs might help, but I still think that the majority of Christian Contemporary music won’t help much.

          • I think it goes both ways… it’s not helpful in some cases, and in others it is helpful.
            For me, ’tis much easier to keep my mind on God when I listen to Christian music.

          • Completely agree, I like to have christian music playing all night so I go to sleep hearing God and wake up hearing him in the morning.

    • Its not a bad song… But is there songs better that you could be listening to that would draw you closer to God instead?

  • i believe that anyone can interpret any song any way. for instance some people say that radioactive by imagine dragons is a song supporting the new age, and i definitely see where they are coming from…. however different people interpret it differenty….i see that song as how the singer sort of now sees what the new age movement really is “im waking up” and stuff. i do believe that many songs are demonic and stuff, so it is wise to use discretion when choosing what secular music to listen to, but its not all bad

  • I completely agree. I think it is because most Christians aren’t homosexual, but they do lie, steal, commit adultery, etc, so they don’t think what they do is as bad as what others do.

    • @disqus_9p1eGFJkII:disqus, @disqus_rHUVb4P7uQ:disqus, @mimeforjesus:disqus, and @karljacobn:disqus, The PERFECT passage on this subject: Romans 1:18-the first part of chapter 2. Yikes! 🙂

      • Yep that’s pretty serious. I think there’s a fine line btwn being judgmental in a way that only God has the right to be and being tolerant of sin. I love 2:4, the OT law shows how great God’s wrath towards sin is, in light of that it is amazing how He has been soooo gracious with this world for so long. His wrath is so great and this world is so evil, His patience is overwhelming. Surely I, who do not begin to know how horrible sin really is, can be patient and gracious to those wrestling with sin.

        • Amen! You actually used the word “wrath” in connection with “God.” I’m impressed! You must secretly be attending my church haha. 🙂

          • M4J, I think I saw somewhere that you like Spanish, if so, do you know of any good books or cds or anything you would recommend?

          • Co-op. It is the best way to go. Or if you have a community college where you could dual-enroll, it is TOTALLY worth it. Other than that – I found this online curriculum which I think works better than a book… I’ve used it to get ahead of my class or to brush up before a test. If it’s of any help: http://www.spanishdict.com/learn
            And if you want to come on here and talk to me in Spanish I’d love to chat like that 🙂 If you ever need help I’m pretty good at speaking the language, so maybe I could help you…

          • Awesome thanks so much! I’d love to talk Spanish and will definitely take you up on the help! Right now I’m trying to memorize the ser and estar verbs:)

          • Es difi’cil, ?no?
            My class in emails to the teacher will put apostrophe’s after a letter that has an accent and do ? and ! where we really should have an upside-down ? or ! You want to do that?
            It looks kinda funny, but it works…

          • Si, es muuuuuy difi,cil. Sino yo soy lento con el engleis(not sure how to spell that), entonces el Español…. Yep that is a really great idea I had never thought of that!

          • Okay, I’ll correct you if I see something wrong. But just because it doesn’t make sense to me doesn’t mean you’re wrong – I’m still learning, too!
            What year are you? I’m seeing words I don’t know yet!
            ?Cua’ntos hermanos tienes?

          • !Bien gracias! Tengo tres hermanos. Mi hermano Felipe, tiene quince an~os, mi hermana Mari’a tiene once anos y mi hermana mas pequen~a llamada Belita tiene tres an~os. (Mi nombre en el Espan~ol es Clara). ?Cua`ntos hermanos tienes tu`?

          • Yo tengo siete hermanos – cuatro hermanas y tres hermanos. No debo hablar sus nombres en el Internet. :/
            Tengo die’ciseis an~os.
            ?Que’ haces cuando tienes tiempo libre? (I have no idea if I”m allowed to say “free time” that way…)

          • Wow tu familia es muy grande, que un bendicio`n! Yo tengo die`cisiete anos. Para el tiempo libre (sounds good!) yo lee mucho (ficcio`n, teolo`gico), eschucho a musi`ca, knit (don’t know the word for that) y estudio el Espan~ol y American Sign Language (no soy deaf):) Y tu?

          • Si’, es un bendicio’n grande 🙂
            ?Lees mucho ficcio’n? (What genres?)
            You knit! 🙂 I crochet!
            ?Te gusta escuchar musica de quie’n?
            !Estudias ASL! Yo se’ un poco tambie’n, pero no lo estudio; lo aprendo de mis amigos 🙂
            Tambie’n soy una mimea y actri’z, y yo escribo muuucho. This is a ton of fun!
            ( @Brett_Harris:disqus – are you okay with us talking in a language you can’t really monitor? Just realized you’re trying to monitor this…)

          • Si mucho, problamente mas de yo debo:) Yo gusto todo de los genres excepto romance y el ficcion de las scienia`s, son buenos, pero no mis favoritos. Especialmente gusto los mysteries, sino es dificil ‘finding’ los appropriados, Randy Alcorn escribo unos buenos. Tambie`n gusto los ficciones historical. Tu lees mucho?
            !Que suave! Yo crochet un poco tambie’n:) Que gusta crochet? So as far as I know, ‘suave’ and ‘chido’ both mean cool, do you know if they are interchangeable?
            Oooh, mis favoritos son los Casting Crowns, Newsboys y Mandisa:) Y tu?
            El ASL es bien porque si no se’ una palabra, puedo ‘spell’!
            Wow es muy suave tu gusta ‘acting’, por cuantos an~os have you acted? Yo gusto escribiendo tambie`n, que gusta escribes? I agree!

          • Lo siento no veo (past tense) tu pregunta de el an~o que estudio el Espan~ol:) Estudio como quatro an~os con la Rosetta Stone, y ‘spent’ un poco tiempo en el Mexi`co. Yo pienso la Rosetta Stone es bien por el vocabulario, pero mi grammatica esta un poco malo:)

          • Ver in past tense is “vi” FTR 🙂
            !?Cuatro an~os?! !Ma’ma mia!
            ?Por que’ estuviste en Me’xico? Si’, Rosetta Stone es bien/buen (?) por el vocabulario 🙂
            Pienso que to gramatica es un poco malo… No se’…

          • Oooh gracias-that’s muy helpful:)
            Yo voy a el Mexico por los ‘trips’ de missio’nes:) ?Usas tu la Rosetta Stone? !Yo gusto mucho tu username nuevo!

          • No, no uso Rosetta Stone ya. Lo (la?) use’ cuando fui muy pequen~a. !gracias! !Me gusta tambie’n! FYI – using “gustar” you’re actually saying “To me _____ is pleasing” so you’d say “!(A mi’) me gusta mucho tu username nuevo!” The “A mi'” part is optional – it gives more emphasis to something or other…

          • !Que chido! ?Por (para?) cuantos an~os estudias el Espan~ol? Bueno gracias! Im trying to figure out su/suya/o. Pense` entendi` pero ahora no se:)

          • Estudie’ el espan~ol para dos an~os. No problema!
            Yo no entiendo su/suya/suyo — you’re ahead of me! 🙂
            Hmmm, I’m running out of things I know enough vocabulary to talk about — how about you?

          • Yep, that’s about the full extent of my vocab:) (sorry it took so long to respond to you I’ve been super busy)

  • Mmm so true. At the counselling center I volunteer at, most of the women claim to be Christian and most are out of wedlock. It is so sad how normal it is.

  • there is a good video on youtube that yall should watch. its called ‘the real and and only truth about this world pt. 1’. it is very creepy and insightful.

  • One of the problems is when the children are affected by it; growing up with two fathers or two mothers is something that is harmful to the child, and they don’t have any choice in the matter. I agree, we should focus on following God ourselves, more than on others’ lives. (If you want to see good discussion on this, look at the DQ “Should Christians legislate morality?” It was a lot of fun to read through!)

  • His comments are pretty crude, so I’ll post a link to another site containing the quote. BE WARNED!!! http://pastebin.com/6VNa8kXs Mods, feel free to delete this if you feel it’s inappropriate for this discussion.

    (BTW, I don’t have TV either; I saw it on the internet.)

    • You could edit it out yourself… just a thought. I’ll just take your word that it’s pretty crude. I have no wish to put that in my mind.
      You don’t have TV! Finally someone who understands me 🙂 Do y’all have Netflix?

        • I grew up without TV, but then my parents got a “bundle deal” for phone and internet, and TV came along with it. It really drained time from all of us… I’m glad they dropped it after about a year. My family does have Netflix, but I last used it… let me think… two weeks ago with my brothers and sisters; before that, it was a really long time ago. I wouldn’t really miss it if my parents dropped that, either 🙂
          It’s is kinda annoying, though, when my friends are all talking about a new movie and I’m like, “What are you talking about?”

          • Me too! And I actually don’t mind. I didn’t even know what pokemon was until last year, and the people that I was talking to couldn’t believe it!

          • Pokeman? I actually don’t know that name! Normally I don’t mind, but some specific friends have a way of making me feel like I should know what they’re talking about.
            But I get to redeem the time in better ways, like writing for SOG and the Reb 🙂

          • Yeah, I think it’s some sort of video game that everyone is supposed to know about! I like knowing about useful things, rather than wastes of time! Like working on Revive…

          • Hmmm I posted a reply but it disappeared. I apologize if you get this twice…

            It’s Trent Blake’s blog “Soldiers of God.” =)

          • Haha I just gained a lot of respect for you. 😉 Pokemon is some sort of Japanese video game series that makes trading cards with different characters (pokemon) on them. It’s kind of like…I don’t know violent creepy Mario with trading cards. =P

          • No joke! Now you know why everyone thinks I’m weird… I was hoping to fit in here…Oh well.
            Just kidding, but I really don’t know what Mario is. Dead serious. 😐

          • Lol that’s fine we’re (almost) all homeschooled here 😉 Mario is a unlikely video game hero, a pudgy Italian plumber who wears a red hat and overalls. He (and his brother Luigi) always have to rescue a princess from the villain of the game, either a giant ape called Donkey Kong or a…turtle/dinosaur thingy named Bowser. He’s been around since like the 80’s I think, and they’ve released hundreds of games with him in it. They released a bunch for the one gaming system I have, a Wii. =)

          • Oh, so I’m not missing out on anything! Glad to know that. Something else I don’t have to be concerned about!
            🙂

          • I feel like such an outsider not being homeschooled. I was through 8th grade…but not anymore. ;(

          • Quick question if you want to answer: Which one do you think contributed to your growth – homeschool or “real school”? I’m always curious, and since I can’t find out for myself I ask people who did it 🙂

          • I can’t really say one or the other. Both have influenced me quite a bit. I do go to a Christian school in my town; it’s really amazing to have teachers who are also believers! I think that homeschooling helped me to become a better student and to have a Biblical base to build upon. “Real” school, I think, has forced me to address my faith against real-world moral issues instead of just avoiding them. Having friends who I can trust and teachers who are mentors has been a big influence, too. If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask!

          • Okay, thank you 🙂
            I don’t have any specific questions right now, but I’ll ask you if I think of any!

          • What!?!? Donkey Kong is a Mario villain??? I thought he was the hero (along with Diddy Kong) of the Donkey Kong games…

          • Yup…have you ever played the original “Donkey Kong” game? It’s an arcade game that started the whole Mario thing…Donkey Kong kidnaps peach and mario has to climb to the top of a structure while jumping over flaming barrels that DK is rolling at him. It’s fun! =)

          • I wouldn’t know what Mario is, either, if I hadn’t been over at a *public-schooled* friend’s house one afternoon, and she wanted to play on the Wii…
            Funny how a public-schooler introduced me to it 🙂 If it hadn’t been for her, I would have no idea what people are talking about, either.

          • Yeah, that’s pretty much it… only the characters are weird hybrid animals that always have huge grins on their faces and evolve when they level up enough. One of my friends could probably tell you the name of every pokemon at every level. Yeah, I’m a homeschooling gamer…

          • I know exactly what you mean… it never bothered me that i had no clue what my friends were talking about until recently… do you have any advice? It’s all trivial, i mean, it doesn’t matter in light of eternity, but it doesn’t feel great to be left out :/

          • I do! It may not be right, but…be proud of not knowing about it! And know a ton about other more worthwhile things. That’s my two cents!

          • Um… I used to be “weird” and proud of it, but recently I’ve wanted to know some of what my friends are talking about too. One thing I did is, I would look up a movie they were talking about, and see what-all was in it. Most of the time, I would be turned off by all of the bad stuff in there, and I wouldn’t want to watch it any more.
            You could try and find common ground somewhere — anywhere! I mean, I know that most of my friends love LOTR, so I can think “You know this movie, and I don’t, but we also both love the other movie.” I dunno… for me it works. Makes me think of the Blimey Cow video about friends… I think this was one of the things friends do to you – they make you feel _____ for not having watched X movie. I’ll tell you more if I remember it – it’s 11:30 my time, so I’m not thinking at maximum capacity right now.

          • That sounds so much like me, it’s scary 😉 Yeah, LOTR Is amazing, but most of my friends think that’s weird too… oh well. I like your advice, about finding middle ground though… I’ll try that 🙂 Thanks MFJ! I really appreciate you replying!

          • Did I already answer this? Cause if I did, I won’t do it again… if not, I will answer you! (My computer and Disqus don’t get along well.)

          • Oh, okay then! I must have thought out a reply and not ever typed it up… I do that a lot 🙁
            Even if you just find out that you and another person both like to read one book, you and this person then have a connection. Find enough people like that and your whole group of friends is like you in one way or another.
            Something else you can do is, if you look up a movie that’s referenced a lot, and it doesn’t look too bad, you can try watching it. Probably it’s only good to watch one time through (a lot of movies are STUPID!!!) but then you might have an idea what people are talking about, anyway.
            And you can always talk to us weirdos on here who don’t know current movies, either! 🙂

          • Ooops *facepalm* i think you did reply to this once… sorry! But Thank you SOOOOO much for replying to my vent of sorts 🙂 I really appreciate all you guys and gals on here 🙂

      • Yeah, I couldn’t edit it out really. It’s pretty much the whole quote. Let’s just say that it’s a little too…anatomical.

        No Netflix here, but we do have Amazon Prime. Not a huge selection, though, and they just removed Doctor Who so I’m bummed about that.

        • I meant you could edit out the link, actually…
          I never got into Doctor Who, so I can’t say I feel your pain. Did it ever strike you as weird?

          • Done! And yes, it does strike me as weird on occasion, but generally it’s in a good way. I guess I’m just a nerd at heart.

          • I know some fellow-nerds of yours, then. All four of the kids in the family are Dr. Who fanatics!
            Is your profile pic from Dr. Who?

  • Hi Seth! Welcome to the Rebelution!
    I’m with you about (Christian?) friends listening to country music… do you have any advice on how to counter that? I have a job where it’s like that/

    • My thought is kind of like this: if the song is not obviously degrading, inappropriate, or just plain wrong, then I think one should be careful about confronting that person about the song. In that person’s conscience, they might feel ok about listening to that type of music. I think we need to discern between wether or not the music is wrong or it’s just a style that we oursleves don’t care for. It’s a rather grey area in the Christian walk, so there will be many different view points. I think it’s mostly a heart issue, though.

    • If a certain song serves as a stumbling block for you, though, in a certain area of life, I think it would be ok to confront someone and ask them not to play the song around you. If they refuse to stop then it’s an issue between them and God. It’s easier said than done though! 😣

      • Sorry for the late reply! Somehow I thought I’d already answered you when I hadn’t, and then I was too busy to make sure.
        Thanks, I see what you mean. One of those things I have to figure out… It’d be so much easier to decide it’s their problem, not mine!

    • Yeah, but most of the country I hear nowadays only mentions God as a swearword… probably depends on what country you’re listening to.