Saturday, March 22, 2008

A Double Minded Man.. unstable in all his ways (James 1:8).

(*Thanking Cal for passing me this one) I watched this video (the one below) and it really got me thinking about my beliefs and my musical preference. The video (which you'll watch) basically questions a man about claiming Christianity and advocating hip-hop artists that speak against what the Bible preaches. Of all people, it's not hard to believe that I had a hard time digesting this video. 

First and foremost, my religion is important to me. Secondly, I am a hip hop head by my own admission. However, when the questions the interviewer asked this man tested his faith, he was quick to stumble. I like to believe I'm well spoken and sure of my stances on issues I am passionate about, but I'm sure I would have begin stuttering upon the same questions, giving the same half-ass answers.

I can't say that I'm well studied in the works of the Bible. That would be blasphemous. Nonetheless, I can't claim complete ignorance. I am fully aware that you can't be of God and be of the world. Meaning: you can't be one of God's children, bask in his glory, claim all of his goodness yet still be in love with material luxuries and find happiness in things that aren't favorable in His eyes. I know this. 

Me claiming Christianity doesn't mean I'm claiming perfection, I definitely fall short. And to be honest, when it comes to my musical preference- I can't say this is an issue that I'm actively going about changing. I really have to look into this, see how I feel about it, develop a real opinion about what needs to be done. Although truthfully, the Bible puts it plain enough- I know music that doesn't glorify God needs to abandoned. HOWEVER, if and when I pursue this part of my walk with God- breaking my ties with hip-hop will be problematic (to say the least).

In regards to some of the things mentioned in the video: God doesn't like when we approve of things He is against, even if we don't partake in them. This gets kind of fuzzy for me, because I also know that people aren't supposed to seek approval from other people and it is not in my place to judge. Judge not, that ye be not judged (Matthew 7:1). With that being said, who am I to approve of someone else's actions? Secondly, I do not believe that all of these rappers are anti-Christ. That term is a bit severe.

 Furthermore, I don't believe that these lyrics will condemn them to hell. Granted, you are supposed to shine light on the world when you are knowledgeable and capable of influencing any person (not just large numbers). Nonetheless, the Lord also knows your heart. However, the conflict I have with this thought is- if you are saved and count on the fact that the Lord knows your heart when you are wrong, then you aren't really saved because you should want to be a representation of God at all times- not rely on His forgiveness to get by at times when you want to be of the world. 

I feel like I am about to start ranting, so I'm going to cut this here. Clearly, this video evoked a lot of thought on my part.

Practice what You Preach?

ps- If you have not read the Bible in its' entirety and are more of a visual learned, I HIGHLY recommend seeing Passion of the Christ. Not only will it increase your appreciation of the struggles the Lord endured for you, it will shed a different light (give a different perspective) of His purpose. However, let me remind you that is a man-made film and a mere interpretation of the Bible. It's nothing concrete, just a visual aid.

*I'll be posting my performance from last Thursday on Monday (3/24), be on the lookout for a post that starts with "INTRODUCING..."


  1. good stuff and chris talked about it last night and he shed a little more light on it and made some good points still in between but its was cool to see what you thought.

  2. You know...
    I've been sitting here trying to come up with a decent comment about this. I'm completely on the fence. I'm not a religious individual at this point and time, but I was raised as a Christian, so I understand a lot of what this interviewer was suggested.

    It's rather unfortunate that the man liked Young Jeezy, lol. He was probably the worst man to defend, and in her case, the best person to bash. (I don't consider him Hip-Hop, though, so that's my own bias).

    Her points made perfect sense. But she's not omniscient, and though her views of what being "anti-christ" may POSSIBLY be close to making sense, she is still doing the judging, though she is not God. A lot of people use religion to justify their own closed-mindedness. But perhaps, she, herself, has no understanding of the essence of music. And perhaps she is using her wonderful gift of words to emphasize one's ignorance, not minimize it.

    Music is, nevertheless, a secular art form, always has been. And although people are tied to music in knots, music does not make the man.

    I'm not quite sure where I stand on this subject, but I can't help thinking she became overly harsh. Not once did she mention that everyone is a sinner. She listed a bunch of sins and called it anti-christ.

    If I were a devout Christian like yourself, I'd have the same problem. Severing ties with hip-hop would be battle in itself.

    -Chucked Deuce-

  3. Oh sheesh,
    and forgive me for the grammatical errors I overlooked there, lol.

    *being "anti-Christ" is...may get me, lol

  4. Like Calvin said, we watched this and spoke about it last night and I felt like she was completely in the wrong. take note, i didnt say wrong, but rather in the wrong. here are some of my thoughts somewhat abbreviated. hope its not too much...

    1) were the things she was saying right? more or less, but altogether it was pretty accurate. however, it should be obvious to anyone who watched the interview that her ultimate goal was not to enlighten him, reason with him, or even allow him to justify his choice of music (which i'll get back to in a minute. lol). SHE WANTED HIM TO FAIL AND HOPED TO MAKE HIM LOOK LIKE AN ASS!

    2) look at how extra hype he was in the beginning. even at a place as wack as ANY BET event, he was clearly enjoying life. she literally killed his spirits and in the name of the Lord. i dont think that's what God wants us to do to eachother: Christians and black people.

    3) it's not always what you say, but rather the manner in which you present your opinion. i highly doubt he walked away thinking "damn, she's right. i'm about to get the talib album right now!" but probably something more like "what a b**ch. who does she think she is?" So what has she really accomplished?

    4) she found this brother at a BET event. if i wanted to go somewhere to find a black person to trap in an intellectual conversation that they more than likely couldnt talk their way out of, i'd start looking at a BET event too.

    4.5) she was fully prepared with each and every one of her points made. notice the camera never pans to her, even when she's speaking. there's no doubt in my mind that everything was written down in a clear and organized form. she found my man on the street. completely unprepared for debate. not cool.

    5) I'm gonna give dude benefit of the doubt and say that my man probably doesnt even like Jeezy like that. i think he just said the first s**t that came to his mind. Why do i think that, you ask? Bo. You know damn well if someone even had the audacity to approach us in the street and ask us to spit something from OUR favorite rapper... shhhhhhiiiiiitttt. they better expect an entire song WITH adlibs (Are you not entertained?!!!!). this guy gave her a PART of a hook where he repeats "Jeezy like to". What kinda F'in fan is that?

    6) I dont really like songs that say "this is what i'm doing. this is my life." if that were true, you wouldnt be rapping about it. furthermore, because you rap, you're a role model whether you like it or not and its wrong to give the impression that these thing are cool. if such actions are referenced in a "this is what i've been through" manner, i'm perfectly fine with it. nothing wrong with testimony. ("Like i told you sell drugs. No. Hov did that, so hopefully you wouldn't have to go through that"/"Thugs with nothing relate to it. I help them see they're way through it, Not you.")

    6) I had a couple more points but #5 has me really wanting to hear some Jay right now. it works out tho because i think i said too much.

    -Mr. Francis (Wallace, to one)

    ps - i dont think there will ever come a time to break your ties with hip hop (i just cringed when i typed that). just decide for yourself if particular songs are destructive or not.

  5. *the last number six is supposed to be 7 and in it, i meant to say "#6". whoops.

  6. I'm mad...cause I had this long drawn out opionated comment that I was in the middle of posting but somehow it got I'll just say (type this) instead...Question everything.

    oh and I found this while googling, in which I agree with it:

    "Judge not, that ye be not judged" (Matthew 7:1) is the commonly quoted verse for why Christians aren't supposed to judge. But, remember that the LORD Jesus COMMANDED us to "judge RIGHTEOUS judgment" (John 7:24). "Judge not, that ye be not judged" (Matthew 7:1) was spoken to those who had "beam[s]" in their own eyes. They were "hypocrites", meaning that they were guilty of the sins they judged in others. "And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not THE BEAM THAT IS IN THINE OWN EYE? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, A BEAM IS IN THINE OWN EYE? Thou HYPOCRITE, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and THEN SHALT THOU SEE CLEARLY TO CAST OUT THE MOTE OUT OF THY BROTHER'S EYE" (Matthew 7:3-5). Notice that the LORD is NOT saying we should not judge by casting the mote out of thy brother's eye, but that we need to see clearly when we judge, and not be hypocrites. The LORD is warning us about judging others when we are guilty ourselves, "for with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again" (Matthew 7:2). It is ONLY the righteous that can judge righteous judgment, because only the righteous can SEE clearly. They have no "mote[s]", or sins, to block their vision.

    in which judgment really should only be in the form of helping the ignorant become enlightened, not as a way of demeaning and criticizing but as humans, we're all guilty of it because of pride.
    I honestly think that we should treat music just like the saying "You are what you eat" in which you are also what you think, read, listen to, speak, do, etc. Besides evaluating the subject from the Christian perspective, if your own personal values don't line up with what you are reading, listening to, etc then it's not in your best interest to link yourself up with that. Feel me? In other words, birds of a feather, flock wouldn't want to be associated with things you know don't represent you (exampled: the exploitation of women, greed, murder, lust, etc that is often glorified in some of today's music) which we all need to consider what things we choose to link ourselves with to represent ourselves as individual human beings and Christians. Hope this was somewhat enlightening or something...I had a whole bunch more to spit but it all got deleted and I don't remember it verbatim. :-/

    The Writer,

    Bee Dee

  7. Ok... so I read this blog a couple times over just to make sure I wasn't rambling or going off on a huge tangent.

    I completely agree with what the sister was saying. She was emerced in scripture and what she was saying was in deed correct (with the exceptions of the lyrics alone condeming people to hell...not cool) As Christians we do have a responsibility to let our lights for Christ shine. We are charged to be a representation of him. While what she was saying was correct, I think she defininately went about it in a completely
    incorrect manner. She went after this man in complete sneak attack mode. She was rehersed and prepared, he obviously was not. His being unprepared was of course his own fault but the entire discussion/interview was a verbal attack. Her way of going about the issue directly goes against how God tells us to tell the truth love. She was saying the truth in the most hostile and antagonistic was imaginable. You would really have to look at what the purpose of the interview was; to make herself look better than him? To make him look like an asshole? Because it definitely didn't seem as though enlightment was the goal.

    Also, the film was very well edited to give the viewer a slanted opinion. There was a lot of repetion to drill one phrase or point home more. And the whole integration of the clips was very exaggerated to give the shock effect that the producer wanted.

    O yea and her word choice really irked me. "exalted." She continously said that he "exalted" the lyrics. According to
    ex·alt /ɪgˈzɔlt/ Pronunciation –verb (used with object) 1. to raise in rank, honor, power, character, quality, etc.; elevate: He was exalted to the position of president.

    I don't recall him doing that even once.

    I don't know the intentions of her interview but her charges were correct. Some of Hip Hops lyrics glorify everything that the Lord says we are to despise. Hip Hop is not the enemy. Is gospel rap considered Hip Hop? Is there any relation between Soulja Boy and Common's lyrical content? They are both arguably Hip Hop artist and what they talk about aren't remotely the similar.

    I think we should be responsible to take in only wholesome and beautiful things so that we may expel beautiful things. So on that note I'm in favor of picking and chosing the aspects of Hip Hop that represent you and forsaking the aspects that contradict a Christ filled life. "No need to throw the baby out with the bath water." Hip Hop is the baby and it came into the world pure and real; over time it may have accumulated some crap but its humble beginning and essence will never leave it, to some artist it has just been misplaced.

    Ok, I've suceeded in rambling. Hip Hop is not the culprit, its mission is not to denounce the Lord. The Lord loves the person but hates the person's sinful acts. I don't think the Lord hates Hip Hop, he hates the sinful aspects of it.

  8. James 1:22-24 says "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word, but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror, and after goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like." This post really hit home with me. I was just talking to your sister the other day about how uncomfortable I felt when I heard jeezy say "and when I get to hell Lord knows im gone fry". I love music/hip hop too, but I know I love God more, and since im trying to strengthen my relationship with him I have learned that certain things, people, and ideas HAVE to be filtered out. I could go on and on all day about this, but I will keep it short!

    Not tryin to turn this into bible study but...
    Matthew 6:24 says "No one can serve two masters .Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You can not serve both God and money."

    Great Post Brandi!!