Beyonce Christianity by shai linne (Lampmode.com)
I had heard some of her songs. Although I’m not the biggest fan of R&B music, it was almost impossible to turn on the radio or television without hearing her music- first with the group she had helped to make rich and famous- She had told her fictional lover to “Say My Name”, and she let the world know that she was an “Independent Woman”. And this was obviously true, because now she was going solo. I had seen her videos. It was almost impossible not to be drawn in as she pouted and flirted with the camera every chance she got. In one particular video, she was found rolling and writhing on the ground with very little clothing as she moaned and groaned about her “Baby Boy”. And now came the big night. It was time for her to receive the reward for all of her hard work.
The entire music industry- including executives, producers, video directors, fellow artists and screaming fans- were all gathered together in one place. And she was clearly the favorite to win all of the awards for which she was nominated. But first she had to perform. By this point, I knew what to expect. I knew she would have a lot of energy and be extremely entertaining as she sang and danced all over the place, making it clear to all who would listen that she was “Dangerously in Love”. Nothing was surprising, including what she was wearing. She was known for wearing tight shirts that exposed her midriff, along with her trademark hot pants that accentuated all of her curves and left very little to the imagination. And when the spotlight hit her, she delivered- as usual. One of the awards she was nominated for was announced right after her performance. “And the award for the best…goes to…Beyonce!” The crowd went crazy. With a big smile on her face- still sweating from gyrating all over the stage moments before- she took her statue and stepped up to the microphone: “First, I want to thank… my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ”. Huh?!?!?
What’s wrong with this picture? Well, many would say nothing is wrong with it. And that’s because we are living in the era of what I call, for lack of a better term, “Beyonce Christianity”. It’s the kind of Christianity that makes much of having grown up in “the church”; The kind of Christianity that places more emphasis on “gospel” music than the gospel message; The kind of Christianity that sees no conflict between trying to seduce someone in one moment and thanking Jesus Christ the next- “Beyonce Christianity”. I can only imagine how confusing it must be for those who are either not Christians or young Christians to see what I saw on that award show. It just doesn’t seem to go together. It’s like we know instinctively that there’s something strange about trying to combine Jesus with seductive dancing. Maybe it’s because we remember His words from Matthew 5:28-29, “But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell.” You probably won’t be hearing anyone quote that verse at an award show anytime soon. We live in an age where the lines between Christianity and the world are becoming more and more blurry. Ja Rule has noticed it. On one of his recent songs, he said, “Christianity got the freakiest b____”. That angered me the first time I heard it. But then I wondered: What would make him say something like that? It was obvious that he’s had encounters with women who claimed to be Christians, but denied that claim by how they interacted with him. These women were “Beyonce Christians”.
So what are we to do in a time like this? Thankfully, God hasn’t been silent on the issue of what true Christianity looks like.
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)
The Bible teaches that before we became Christians we were slaves to sin (John 8:34). We were caught up in doing things the same way as everyone else. According to the list we just read, that included being caught up in sexual sin, stealing, materialism, lying, etc. But notice how the Bible puts those things in the past tense. “And such WERE some of you.” When we believed the gospel; that is, the good news that Jesus Christ, the sinless Son of God, took the punishment that we deserve for our sins on the cross and believing that He arose from the dead on the third day (Romans 10:9, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4), we were saved from the wrath to come. And that means that Christians are actually new creatures (2 Corinthians 5:17), having been born again with a new nature that now desires to live righteously (John 3:3) It doesn’t mean that Christians are perfect (1 John 1:8), but true Christianity finds us slowly growing to look more and more like Jesus Himself, in terms of His character.
“As He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” (1 Peter 1:15-16)
So if you want to know what real Christianity is all about, turn of the TV and open up God’s Word. He will provide the antidote for all of the confusing messages that we see all the time in our culture. The more familiar you become with what God has said about these things, the more you will recognize that the representation of Christianity in the media is not the real thing. It’s only through reading and studying the Bible that you will find out what it really means to be destiny’s child (1 Thessalonians 5:9).
“Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when He appears, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who thus hopes in Him purifies himself as He is pure.” (1 John 3:3)