Christian theology drips from the secular music scene. Wonder if they know it…
My wife and I love this song from John Legend. The production value of the music and the ensuing video leave no wonder to how artist these days get over 70 million hits on YouTube.
Besides having the talent to write his own lyrics (and sing them so well), play an actual instrument and produce his own videos, John Legends’ “All of Me” resonates so well with us because of the place in which it hit’s home: the heart and soul. People want this in their marriages. They long for the level of commitment that’s highlighted. They applaud the selfless mentality of loving your spouse despite flaws, and committing to that person with every ounce of their being. This is the epitome of a Christian marriage, and spot on with our theology.
Not enough can be said how, in our capitalistic society, quality is rewarded. We look for it in everything, from underwear to T.V.’s, movies to sunglasses. This is where the success stories lie. Legends’ video is a prime example of how an artist can promote their message effectively by means of embracing the importance of quality. We gobble up this type of entertainment for the same reason we gobble up good paintings. We see a level of professionalism in the way they market themselves, and this brings a sense of comfort to us. Many of the leading artists today understand this fundamental idea of what the consumer wants and the results can be seen by the millions of people who listen too, and purchase, their product.
I used to work in banking. When handling peoples finances it is of the utmost importance to make them feel that they are dealing with a professional. People come looking to throw their money at products and, in America, everyone has the right and opportunity to supply that product and capitalize off of their skill. If I were to walk into a meeting with a prospective client wearing a John Deere shirt and cut off khaki shorts, chances are they will not take me seriously and now I have damaged the opportunity to sell my services. Contrarily, if I show up to that same meeting wearing a sharp looking suite the client would feel like they were dealing with a real professional and my chances of success increase. Simple? I know… go figure. So why do we assume that anything less should be applied when selling music? John Legend has over 70 million hit’s because he’s wearing his suite to the meeting, while so many up-and-coming artist put on their John Deer tees expecting the heavens to open and rain down YouTube manna. If you want to be taken seriously you need to set the customer at ease with quality production of your product. Not cut of khaki’s.
Don’t get me wrong, one can have the top video equipment in the industry and still fail. People are also looking for substance. We want to connect to our music, to revel in it and live by it. We love music so much because of the inner desires it strokes and the feelings it brings forth. Nothing is more powerful then a good song. This is another reason I believe “All of Me” is so successful. It completely promotes the Christian worldview and the emotions, thoughts and feelings associated with it. Since God has written His laws on our hearts and made Himself known to every living creature, music that falls in line with His word resonate as very real on the most base level of humanity.
In a culture where traditional marriage is under heavy assault, I find the irony of a song that encapsulates the rich Christian stance on marriage, being so heavily embraced by the secular culture, a tad amusing.
Throughout the entire song we are reminded of the sacrifices that we ought to make for the benefit of our spouse. How counterculture is this? Today people have adopted a very relative form of love that leaves no room for sacrifice. The mantra of the day is to pursue happiness at all cost. The notion that we should devote all of ourselves to another, and accept that person totally, is foreign… unless you’re a Christian. The Christian understands these principles very intimately, and the pagan agrees with us.
Everyone, whether they study their bible’s or not, understands the need for the Christian worldview. Without it we would know nothing and any assertion of self sacrifice or unconditional love would have no meaning to us at all. Songs which pull at the heartstrings would fall on deaf ears because there could be no accounting for emotions such as love, fear or hate. This song is bursting with good theology about godly love. Christians understand that life is more about other people than themselves, and that, in marriage, elevating our spouse’s feelings and happiness above ours is commanded by Jesus for a successful marriage. I wonder if Mr. Legend understood this while writing a song to such a selfish culture? I wonder if he knows how much of a theologian he is.
Christian musicians could take a note out of John’s book. They need to understand that they have the only message that people can understand, the only words that will effect the soul, and they need to take of the tee-shirts and cutoffs and focus on producing that message in ways like Legend- with quality and class.