"My music is not Christian—Lecrae is"

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Aaron Blumer's picture


Had a bit of a debate with someone years ago about whether "things" can be good or bad, vs. "acts." My interlocutor took the view that only acts have morality, never objects. I took the view that while the moral significance of an object can be diffused and re-contexted in many ways, it is, nevertheless not completely separable from the act of making it.

To put it another way, the moral weight of the act of making adheres, to some extent, to the the product of the act. (Arguably, in a way, the "thing" still is the act of its making for as long as it exists). Add to the mix the fact that art is expression, whether we like it or not--and carries meaning (however slippery that meaning may be). It should be obvious that a piece of art can never be wholly lacking in moral weight. 

Returning to what seems to be Lecrae's point, surely he believes that his work includes character or qualities that derive from he himself. So how could he be Christian and his work be wholly unchristian? The thing made carries with it much of the maker and the act of making.

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

GregH's picture

I admire what Lecrae has done and is doing. His perspective here is not limited to him. It is a growing trend among Christian musicians and I think there is a lot of truth and validity to that view point. There is safety in Christian musicians staying within the Christian music industry. Sometimes, as Lecrae alludes, that is just a marketing decision. I know that firsthand. There is no reason why the music industry cannot be influenced by Christians rather than Christians being relegated to their own little niche of Christian music.


Joel Shaffer's picture


I think Lecrae and others that make this argument would not disagree with you.  I think by making "Christian" an adjective when it comes to his music, Lecrae is concerned that he is reducing it to an evangelistic tract in a way that dichotomizes the spiritual from the material.  Having heard him lecture in workshops and seminars, He is more Kuyperian in his approach where “There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, Mine!”      

Bert Perry's picture

Psalm 24;1, no?  And if that's what he's all about, count me as a supporter, even if I can't make head or tails of hip-hop to save my life.  And I must confess, I cannot.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

pvawter's picture

"He’s not trying to preach—he’s just trying to do his art."
I don't think there is a legitimate distinction between the two, when it comes to speech and communication. Jesus said that our words come from the overflow of the heart, so it is really impossible to separate the speaker from his speech. Furthermore, the Psalmist was concerned that the words of his mouth, like the meditation of his heart be acceptable in God's sight.
To compare his music to Jesus' carpentry is not a fair comparison, either, since words are in a distinct category in Scripture. Rapping to the glory of God means more than just rapping to the best of your ability. It also requires that your speech be "with grace, seasoned with salt" and "sound speech that cannot be condemned."