"In large auditoriums, slick folk musicals with an unmistakable rock beat are premiering before crowds of 5,000 and 10,000 people, and when the invitation is given hundreds of people respond . . There's no doubt about it, God is working through contemporary music today."—William Peterson, A New Day for Christian Music, The Wesleyan Advocate, September 16, 1974, p. 6.
It is unfortunate that many church leaders think that Christian rock is bringing people to Christ, but it is not really happening.
"The impact of a Christian musician in concert is not always what it appears. The serious call of Jesus Christ entails extra-severe obedience and commitment . .
"At a recent concert I asked how many people loved Jesus. All 500 raised their hands. Then I asked how many had witnessed about Jesus in the past few weeks. About six to ten raised their hands. Then I asked how many could explain the plan of salvation. About three said they could.
"People, you're in love with someone you don't know. Actually, we've forgotten Him. We're laughing in the face of God.
"It concerns me that in the last few years, we've been able to fill the convert halls, but not our churches."—Bill Cole, vice-president of Light Records, in Christian Bookseller, 1980.
Instead of bringing young people into our churches, we are detouring them out of it—into rock music!
Bill Cole, quoted above, is head of a Christian recording company. He refused the opportunity to make a lot of money by producing "Christian rock" tapes and CDs, because he saw how they were destroying the lives of young people.
A former staff member of Youth for Christ in a large metropolitan city sent out several Jesus rock groups to tour the country in the early 1970s. Looking back on it all, after hearing the reports of the returned workers and while taking part in the tours, he concluded:
"I don't know how much we influenced anybody. It was good entertainment, but not much use in bringing to the kids that the basis of Christianity lies in a commitment to Christ."—"The Jesus Rock Phenomenon," in St. John's Calgary Report, February 10, 1978, p. 20.
Phil was a young man who spent many years, first, in rock music and, later, in a Christian rock band. Then one day, he entered a godly Christian church—and found Christ. Recognizing that he must leave his worldly past, or be lost, he immediately severed all connections with the rock band. Here is part of his story. Notice that he did try to give invitations to accept Christ at the end of each performance; yet, because the audience had just been saturated with rock music, they were too bewildered to make decisions that had any real stability.
"In 1973, I became a Christian after playing with rock bands and being in the music business for about seven years. I was manager of a record shop and played drums in nightclubs and ballrooms. I knew the Lord wanted me to come out from among the crowd I was in, and also that He wanted me to put away the rock music that I loved.
"[At an earlier time] Some well-meaning Christians encouraged me to 'use my talents for the Lord.' So we formed a group to play what we considered to be the new Christian sound. It was nothing more than secular rock with Christian words. We thought that the type of music we played, the length of our hair, and the way we dressed would more effectively reach these young people.
"At the close of the concert, we gave our testimonies with soft, slow music in the background. When we gave the invitation, sometimes a hundred or more teenagers would come forward. Were these conversions genuine? We decided to begin a follow-up.
"We were shocked to find that almost everyone who had given us an address had gone back to their old ways. I can't think of one person I could show you today as fruit of our so-called 'ministry.' I realize now that they were responding to the music, not to the Holy Spirit."—Phil Wilson, June 1978.
Christian musicians, singers, and executives who have their eyes fixed on the money they will make, instead of trying to help young people and older ones have a deeper faith and commitment to God—are making a terrible mistake.
They are playing into Satan's hands, and they will have to answer in the final Judgment for their actions.
The words in Christian rock teach that God approves of whatever we do! —It teaches that there is no need of repentance from sin or putting away of our idols. It teaches that we do not have to change our lives or obey God's Ten Commandment law. The lyric message of Christian rock is actually watered-down worldliness.
The music, with its incessant rock beat, was devised in the councils of Satan to excite the passions and lower nature of men and women. It weakens their moral nature, so that they are less able to resist temptation and indulgence in sin.
Christian rock is the total opposite of godliness. Masquerading as it does under the label of "Christian," it is all the more sinister in its attack and successful in overcoming the faithful followers of Jesus.
Because "Christian contemporary music" so closely resembles the world's worst secular music, it easily lures Christian believers into giving themselves fully to all that the world can offer. A full 97% of those who keep listening to "Christian contemporary music," eventually become addicted to secular rock. It is the intense beat in both which is addicting; so a crossover from one to the other is easily made.
The offense of the cross has been removed. Genuine godliness is old-fashioned and out of date. Christians are fooled into thinking that a "Christian rock concert" is the best way to fulfill the Great Commission to "give the message to all the world."
Music has a tremendous power, not only for evil, but also for good. Consider the simple message of a song appealing to those in the audience to accept Christ as their Saviour. It can have a tremendous effect on those with whom the Spirit of God is working. Many evangelists use a musical selection as the high point of their appeal for decisions for Christ. One writer said this:
"Music was made to serve a holy purpose, to lift the thoughts to that which is pure, noble, and elevating, and to awaken in the soul devotion and gratitude to God."—Messages to Young People, p. 293.
We live in a world infested with sin and evil; yet there are those who imagine that all music is harmless. In this book we have learned the truth of the matter. The facts are quite obvious. The conclusions are startling.
If you have not already done so, you must immediately flee from Christian Rock music. Henceforth, you must totally avoid it.
Will you, just now, make this decision? Remember that the only way you can do this is through surrender to God, earnest prayer for help, memorizing Scripture, and singing good songs—so Satan cannot put the bad songs back into your mind!