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Friday, July 14, 2006 

Friday Funnies -- The Rap Edition

Sorry that Friday Funnies is running a bit late today, but I hope that you will find it worth the wait. Anyway, this week's Friday Funnies is all about Rap - the good, the bad, and the ugly, the latter two characterized by what you will find below in the two humorous videos. Let's start with the good though. This week's post was inspired by an interesting article I read about two weeks ago at Between Two Worlds about a Christian rapper named Voice. Justin Taylor followed up a week later with an interview with Voice regarding his newest album and his life as a rapper. Here is one exchange I found quite enlightening:

For this next question I’m thinking about increasingly smaller circles. In the first circle you have all the musicians in the world. Within that circle is a much smaller one that holds all the rappers in the world. Within that is a smaller one yet of guys trying to live a fairly clean, moral lifestyle. Within that you have Christian rappers. And finally, you have perhaps the smallest segment of all—Reformed Christian rappers. But you’re not the only one, are you? Who are some of the other Reformed brothers out there doing hip hop and rap?

Right now the guys I listen to are Christcentric (Christcentric.net) Shai Linne and Timothy Brindle (Lampmode.com). These guys, groups influence me the most and the ones I like to listen to. There are more but I don’t listen to them as much.

Voice was an attendee at the recent Together For the Gospel conference in Louisville and Taylor asks him for his opinion of the rap parody that Lig and John Duncan performed. You can go over and check out his critical analysis of their music career possibilities.

Here are two "Christian rap videos" (if you can call them that) I found on the internet. Both are meant to be humorous, and are in no way representative of the style of the guys mentioned above (you can check out the links and find videos of each if you are interested). The first of the two videos I found over at The No Kool Aid Zone, which is authored by an Evan-Free blogger, and the other is fairly old, so most of you probably have seen it before. So sit back and enjoy a good laugh courtesy of the latest installment of "Friday Funnies."



Did you see the response that Ingrid Schlueter (of Slice of Laodicea) wrote to the Purpose Driven conference video?:

click here

I thought it was a good response! I really don't find the video humorous either.

Man... Daniel, do I really have to watch those vidoes in order to comment on them?

Really, its just not anywhere near my circle of life! As a matter of fact I believe that there are many more than 6 degrees that seperate me from ANY form of rap or hip hop.

I have NO interest at all.

DR, Bob Hyatt has a good post on what Ingrid is calling "heresy, blasphemy, etc." Some people are just overreacting. By some people, I mean Ingrid, and her cohort of overreactors. Bob's post is
"http://bobhyatt.typepad.com/bobblog/2006/07/settin_the_pace.html">here
.

MarieP, I am as Reformed as they come when it deals with worship and revering God, but I honestly think that Ingrid and the folks over at Slice of Laodicea have gone a little overboard with this one. First, it wasn't a worship video, it was just played as an opening video to the worship conference, which I am guessing was a mix of worship experiences, lighthearted fellowship, and help with resources. As an opening video, I am guessing it fits in the second category. Second, it was meant to be humorous and as such, whether one thinks it is funny or not, it was certainly not meant to be a serious expression of worship and thus to call it blasphemous is to put upon it a purpose that just doesn't fit the context. And third, it is obviously poking fun at different aspects of culture.

I appreciate that people care about God's glory enough to worry about something like this, but I honestly think this has more to do with a bias against Rick Warren than a substantial complaint. After all, I didn't hear anyone complain about T4G rap by Lig Duncan. I think if the SofL people want to pick on something to call blasphemous, heretical, and irreverant, then this just doesn't seem to be the right thing, nor the right time.

But thanks for letting me know about their critique.


Steve, you have to get out more. I guess you are too busy taking care of those chickens with large talon. Gosh!

DR, I think we should do a rap when you come down for a visit. We'll get Howie some GRILLZ.

What do you think?

(Template went whacky again. Wordpress.com is just a skip and jump away.)

By the way, I've been listening to Charlie Hall's latest album, Flying Into Daybreak. It's really good. His song "Closer," while not deeply theological in nature, cries out from my heart. I love it. Passion (no pun intended).

If I wanted to listen to rap I would play my wife's music.
Now where's my Putamayo cd?

Hello Daniel,

Not sure whether to say thanks for posting the testimony and interview featuring Voice (along with his quote which gives my group Christcentric and our friends some exposure) or to be discouraged that you've featured someone who seriously endeavors to advance the gospel (via hip-hop) in your "Friday Funnies" and included some ridiculous videos that hardly represent what we do.

Not to say it was your intention to demean or ridicule Voice (or groups included in his quote)...but those who have no idea who we are are and have never heard our music can make some unfair and inaccurate assumptions by associating us with the videos.

But, if anyone is interested in taking an objective look at hip-hop grounded in biblical theology...please check out our sites and listen to the music:
www.christcentric.net
www.ihearvoice.com
www.lampmode.com

In His Grace,

Quincy

Quincy,

Thanks so much for stopping by the blog and offering us some links. I certainly did not mean to offend you or any other Biblically-based rapper or musician. My Friday Funnies are meant to be just that -- Funny. Hence, if you notice from earlier posts, I try to post humorous videos and pictures. This post was inspired by what I read of Voice over at Justin Taylor's blog, but these videos were not meant to be an example of Christian rap or hip-hop, just of humor displayed by a style of entertainment (part of the reason why I posted the clip from the interview with the links inserted was to delineate Voice from the videos here - as he described himself and the others he mentioned as Reformed).

I do want you to know that my post actually brought about a rather lengthy discussion on Christian rap at my church small group meeting. One of the small group members had a Cross Movement CD and played it for the group, which led to a discussion on lyrics and how much they stand out if they are Biblically-based. Through the discussion and listening to the CD, we found that our small group leaders' son is interested in rap and so we were able to point him to Reformed and Biblically-sound rappers such as the ones you mentioned.

And so while I cannot speak for everyone who reads my blog, I can say that those in my small group who read it were able to distinguish between these two videos and what you and those you mentioned do.

Again, I am sorry if I offended you in any way, but I hope you will see that was not my intention. I will change the wording of the post to reflect the difference between Voice, et al. and these two comedians.

Daniel,

I never did say thanks for your response and edit to your blog...I saw it the next day - but didn't have a moment to post (memory is short - but ran accross your blog again out in cyberspace and remembered!) But, thanks brother - appreciate your humility and respect toward what we are trying to do. God's blessing on you and your ministry.

Grace and Peace,

Quincy

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Paul was not interested merely in the ethical principles of religion or of ethics. On the contrary, he was interested in the redeeming work of Christ and its effect upon us. His primary interest was in Christian doctrine, and Christian doctrine not merely in its presuppositions but at its centre. -- J. Greshem Machen.

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