09 Jan 2013
- Mike Abel
The message in Gangnam Style pokes fun at those kinds of people who are trying so hard to be something that they are not.
The message in Justin Bieber's song and video Baby is one of the persistence of a guy trying to get back a hard-to-get girl.
Contemporary Christian singers and groups like Israel Houghton, CeCe Winans, and Michael W Smith - do not come anywhere near the YouTube audiences of Gangnam Style ( one billion) and Baby (800 million).
To explain the supremacy and sway of secular pop music and its idols one has to see the patterns and devices behind this reality.
The chance of making money is a definite aim and relies upon various factors for success with movies and pop music. I think movies succeed because of the popularity of the stars, their fan bases, publicity and advertising that keeps the movies in the public mind.
On the other side of the entertainment coin, I think that pop hit records succeed mainly on the song lyrics and then on the tempo and tunes. Most of the songs that make the pop charts and get airtime have lyrics that imply or openly proclaim strong sexual desires or intimate acts.
For example, the girl in Gangnam Style gets hotter when the night comes - and is sexy and bares it all. Christian artists will not record songs containing such themes and lyrics, because of their deep Christian beliefs and values.
Contemporary Christian music survives on many fronts, especially against world systems that actively operate against any Christian effort. Closer home within the church, contemporary Christian music faces criticism that it is nothing more than entertainment.
With regard to the label of entertainment, the quest of any Gospel genre must be to influence the lifestyles, beliefs and spiritual insights of the supporters and fans, beyond mere entertainment.
By its nature, entertainment is perishable. Unlike goods and services, entertainment lasts only as long as we are experiencing or watching. Experiences also change and diminish in importance, as time passes.
I have often said that the spirit of a song is in the spirit that inspired it, and the one who sings it. This is the main divide between secular and Christian music.
The Holy Spirit inspires and backs all songs and music that bring themes of the good news of salvation and God's plan for this world and the universe. The spirit of this age churns out and plugs lusts; to widen the gulf between light and dark, truth and trick, good and evil.
There are billions that search in songs and dances like Gangnam Style, for true joy, entertainment and for a new world.
Becoming more spiritual; is not their most important goal in life; yet music can be a key source of more than moral guidance.
Pray that the new breed of Christian song artists continue to reach out in every godly way to this huge audience, with a direct message that inspires listeners to bond with Jesus Christ, on a lasting basis.
Mike is the Founding Pastor of Oasis of the Lord. You can follow him on his blog; Twitter; and http://www.cross.tv/profile/282017?go=about&;aid=19376