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CHRISTIAN ROCK

Is it not surprising that people who cheer when a speaker says rock music has a sinister power to corrupt minds with satanic messages will then turn around and question the value of Christian rock?

If music has a power that makes it dangerous when carrying an evil message, does it not stand to reason that it also has a power which makes it productive when carrying a good message? Music is a tool, like fire, to warm or to destroy. The issue is the intent of the user and their skill, not the tool itself.

Few things are wholly evil, most instead being perversions of God-given things. Lies are communication corrupted. Adultery is the marriage bed defiled. Gluttony is eating that gives the flesh dominance over the spirit. Let us not throw out the pure because of perverted counterfeits.

The best of rock music established a tradition of social commentary, spiritual searching, and poetic expression new to the world of art. Most rock music has not been of that caliber, but that does not diminish the accomplishments of those who went beyond making music about the urge to copulate and party. It is that artistic tradition in rock music we hold to.

Whether you agree with the message in particular or not, songs like Kansas - "The Pinnacle", Pink Floyd - "Us and Them", ELP - "Lucky Man", Cat Stevens - "Where Do The Children Play", or Jackson Browne - "After the Deluge" deserve recognition as art.

It has been said that if you just look at the lyrics of even 'heavy' rock songs, they are poor poetry. First, to tear a work of art apart and look at one of its components in isolation will always be a diminishing of that art work. Second, to then take and judge that out of context component by the rules of some other art form seems a bit gross.

If the meaning in the lyrics is examined, and not its 'poetic' structure, there are many songs that will not come off badly in comparison to the meaning in the works of many major poets. It could be argued this is to judge poetry by the standards of prose. Yet would that not be fair? At least then poems and lyrics would both be judged by the standards of a third party.


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