In continuing our recent focus on media and theology, I think it would be beneficial to lay a rough theological framework to help guide the discussion. One of the most important passages for considering how Christians should think about and interact with our culture is Romans 1:18-25. (Preston already...
Our worship leaders often remind us that worship is more than music. And rightly so. Our worship ought to extend far beyond the five songs we sing on Sunday mornings, and what we do during that time often falls far short of the worship mark. But we should be careful...
Do you ever find it odd that we have worship celebrities? I’m not suggesting that guys like Chris Tomlin or David Crowder are odd (okay, Crowder is a bit odd, but in a cool way), I’m just saying that the concept of a celebrity worshiper is strange. In some...
We run into problems when we try to define Christian music as either “music made by Christians” or “music with Christian subject matter.” Perhaps a third definition will give us better results. Maybe Christian music is music directed at Christian audiences. This one sounds a bit more plausible. After all,...
U2 has been extremely influential for a very long time. Not many bands have been major players in the music world for 30 years. And they have earned every bit of their notoriety—not through pop gimmicks, but through dedication to creating inventive and genuine music. Bring up U2 in Christian...
A couple weeks before Thanksgiving, Sufjan Stevens released the latest installment in his Christmas music dynasty. Many, many, many musicians create Christmas music. But no one does it like Sufjan. For most people, Christmas music means Mariah Carey, Chris Tomlin, or the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. But Sufjan has a small army...
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Nothing like this had ever happened before. In the beginning, there was God. And nothing else. Not an empty space and an endlessly ticking clock. Just nothing. No space. No time. Space and time are included under the heading...
I’ve written a fair amount about Christian music, and also about the Christian Music Industry (both the positive and the negative). One of the major weaknesses of “Christian Music” as an industry is that it can’t account for all of the solid music being created by solid Christians. It’s...
We often think that popular culture is all about mindless entertainment. But we shouldn’t. In many ways, musicians and filmmakers are the philosophers of our day. Whether or not we realize it or care, they guide us in thinking through some of life’s most important issues. This week I’ve been...
The title of this post is probably enough. We all know what it's like to somehow feel better or consoled or validated or inspired after listening to a piece of music—as if by magic. And magic is not the worst term for it: much of music's power comes from...
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