The Patch Factor

August 29, 2008

Before I begin my article, let me take just a moment to commend Kirk Brandenburg for his article.  It was well-written and well thought out, and demonstrated his father’s diligent teaching at home.  Kirk, you are a credit to your dad’s ministry, and I trust that you will continue to be.

That being said, throughout this month’s topic, we have alluded several times to the fact that some consider the piano to be an effeminate instrument.  With apologies to Kirk and others, I am one of those who think that a large number of piano-playing males are effeminate.  In this post, I intend to flesh that thought out a bit, so I hope you will “endure to the end.”

First, I do not believe that there is any such thing as an effeminate instrument.  Piano included.  For crying out loud, the piano is way too heavy to be effeminate.  But I digress.  I would also include the flute, the pennywhistle, the clarinet, and the harp in my list of instruments that are not effeminate.  I will admit that I don’t have a verse on this… my opinion results from a simple observation that I have made.  Instruments are gender neutral.  They are neither male nor female.  Neither masculine nor feminine.

That being said, although I can in no way claim to be a musician (I can’t even play an i-pod), I do think that some instruments are more suitable to women than men, and vice-versa.  But since that is a topic for those more expert in musical instruments than myself (starting with Kermit the Frog), I’ll leave that one alone.  I believe that any instrument can be played by a man (and no, I don’t believe that ‘like a man’ means either poorly or boorishly), and in a manly fashion, and I believe that the sooner we get that idea in our head, the better off we will be.

Secondly, I believe that a large number of piano-playing men are effeminate.  And I believe that the percentage of effeminate piano-playing men increases in proportion with the amount of skill of the piano player.  In other words, there is a higher percentage of effeminate male piano-players in the 90th percentile of skilled piano players than there is in the 50th percentile of skilled piano players.  And in case the musicians aren’t all offended yet, I believe that this is as true amongst Fundamentalists as it is in the world.

Of course, I am entitled to my opinion, and you are entitled to yours.  Admittedly, I haven’t any documentation for my opinion.  It is based purely on my own subjective observations and experiences.  Nevertheless, I believe that this perception is shared by many.  Certainly, this perception is not an unusual one, or it would not have been mentioned so often in this month’s discussion.

Thirdly, I do not say that all piano-playing men are effeminate.  My son has been playing the piano for over a year now, and is moving along just fine.  Most of the boys in our church are playing some sort of instrument, and we certainly encourage our people to get the entire family to play and sing.  So, I am not saying that musicians will turn effeminate.  On the contrary, I am making an observation about what is, not a requirement for what must be.

Cause or Effect?

I do not say that music causes young men to become effeminate.  I should make that clear from the outset.  And yet, for some reason, young men who spend inordinate amounts of time in music tend towards effeminacy.  Why is this?

I absolutely deny in no uncertain terms that the problem lies in the nature of music itself.  God made music, and made it for men.  We do not find very many women who were musicians in the Bible.  That does not mean that women cannot be musicians (not to re-hash the regulative principle or anything), but it simply means that in Bible times, the men led in the musical aspects of worship, both instrumental and vocal.  One of the manliest men in the Bible, David, is one of the most famous of those musicians.  And the musical program in Israel was probably at its zenith during the reign of David, who appointed more than a few men to serve as singers, as players of instruments, as leaders in the musical parts of worship.  I do not believe that music softened David, or limped his wrists, or turned him into a regular flaming pretty boy.  Somehow, he managed to maintain his masculinity in spite of the hours spent with just him and his harp.  The fact is that David’s music contributed to his masculinity, and did not strip him of it.

One reason that young men often turn into prissies when they get into music could be because of the predominate influence of women on music in our day and age.  Since I have no experience outside of Fundamentalist churches in this realm, I will limit what I say in the following paragraphs to our circles.  We don’t find very many men who teach music in our fundamentalist circles.  When we do find one, he is often a little limp in the wrists.  If a young man is to be manly in his playing, he will really need the influence of a masculine instrumentalist.  Nothing against women teachers here (my son is learning from a lady in the church right now).  But when he is older, he will need a man to teach him to play that way.

Another reason that male musicians often get soft could be the lack of sports.  My observation would be that young men tend to do one or the other, but not both.  In some ways, it makes sense.  A piano teacher contracts to get paid, and if your son broke his wrist in a football game, you will lose that money, and he will lose his rhythm, in a manner of speaking.  Despite the risks, however, I believe that it is vital to a young man’s future that he be involved in sports in addition to his music.  And the further you intend for him to go in music, the more important it is that he be engaged in physically demanding sports.  Our boys wrestled for two or three years before they started piano.  I don’t intend for them to become professional wrestlers (I’m trying to get them to stop eating boogers already), and I want them to be better at piano (or another instrument) than they are at wrestling.  But I want them to learn what it is to get their tail kicked, and to get back up, and to fight again.  I believe that the lack of balance in the lives of many young men contributes to the effeminate tendencies.

Yet another reason could be the lack of masculine examples in the world of music.  Today especially, there seems to be a great gulf fixed between the men who play sports and the men who play instruments.  The manly men play basketball.  The others play piano.  I believe that this problem is affecting our young men.  If we are to return to Biblical masculinity in music, we must work hard to change that perception.

But the biggest single contributor to the effeminacy problem amongst piano-playing men can be traced back to worship.  The Bible teaches that we become what we worship (see Psalm 115:1-8 and Psalm 135:15-18).  The way we worship also has a strong influence on our outcome.  And in this day, effeminate worship plagues God’s people.  For the sake of the reader, I will leave the ecumenicals and evangelicals alone.  Contemporary music is fun to bash.  But lets talk about our own churches for a few minutes.  I’m not opposed to Fanny Crosby, and I can think of at least one Ron Hamilton song that I enjoy (Ten Thousand Hallelujahs).  But in our churches today, we have replaced the Majestic Hymns of the Faith with “In the Garden” and “Softly and Tenderly.”  It has been nearly two years since I wrote on the “In the Garden” thing.  I am still amazed at how offended people get when you mention that it is the doctrinal equivalent of Twinkie the Kid.  They LIKE that song.  But that is just my point.  It is nothing in comparison to the great hymns of conquest that churches once sang, back in the day when men were playing the organ for worship.

We have traded Isaac Watts for Francis Havergal.  We’ve traded Charles Wesley for Fanny Crosby.  We’ve traded “How Firm a Foundation” for “The Savior is Waiting.”  We’ve traded “Immortal, Invisible” for “I’m So Happy, and Heeeeerrrres the reason wwwwhhhhhyyyy…”  We’ve traded the majesty of our rich heritage of hymnody for little chorus diddies.  We’ve traded William Cowper and John Dykes for Mac Lynch and Ron Hamilton.  Do we wonder that our boys play like girls?  All they’ve ever known is girly worship.  They think that is the way it is supposed to be.

Until we return to Psalm-singing, until we restore the great old hymns of conquest, we will continue to produce piano-playing mamma’s boys.  We can call it the Patch factor.  So long as the predominate influence within fundamentalist-type churches is Ron Hamilton, we will continue to churn out pretty-boy piano players like Hershey churns out kisses or Willy Wonka churns out sweet tarts.

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  1. Don Heinz
    August 29, 2008 at 5:35 am

    Buddy, let’s settle this outside! I think Patch looks smashing in those tights, and I always wanted my kids to think of themselves as spiritual pirates, if that’s not an oxymoron.

    But seriously, good points. I agreed that our current music education is the cause and not the result. David is the consummate example of that. If we have our boys learning music, they also ought to be taught to street preach in Brooklyn.

  2. August 29, 2008 at 5:37 am

    Brother Dave,

    What do you really think? 🙂 I know that you are not saying that we should never sing Havergal or Crosby, right?

    By the way, I agree with your observations at the beginning of your post. My observations are also not scientific, but very subjective.

    I would put one more item here as well. Even in churches with a distinct BJU flavor (high hymns, vespers, etc.) I have noticed the same thing.

    Anyway, I thank God weekly for a man who plays the organ. He is in charge of his home and a good and godly man. We also sing the old hymns as well as Havergal & Crosby. Sounds like a law firm, doesn’t it?

  3. Dave Mallinak
    August 29, 2008 at 7:14 am

    We sing Havergal and Crosby in our church, but if we have more than one or two of them, I get a little tired. If we have more than three in a night, I am downright disappointed. If we don’t have any of the “hymns of conquest,” I am downright disgusted.

    Havergal, Crosby, and Lillenas. Newton, Watts, and Cowper. So much better. But if you need a law firm, get Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe.

    By the way, did you know that Bach played the organ for church? Did you know that most of his music was written for church as well?

  4. August 29, 2008 at 8:32 am

    Actually, I did know that about Bach. By the way, I appreciated the law firm inference. I believe they are the same firm used by Car Talk on NPR.

    But, you are right, Newton, Watts, and Cowper are much more “prestigious.”

    I appreciate the banter.

  5. Mike Marshall
    August 30, 2008 at 7:56 am

    Who is the “we” ?
    As for us (our church) WE have not given up Isaac Watts, or Charles Wesley
    We sing Fanny Crosby too, but what is not masculine about Blessed Assurance? Fanny did not write the music, men did. She wrote the words. What man cannot stand up and sing that song at the top of his lungs?
    We still sing “Christian fight songs” for hymns, and “in the garden” might wind up on the docket once a year at best.
    I personally do not see any return from this, as a whole. Your church can, my church can, but worldwide? Not gonna happen. I believe one of the precursors to the Lord’s return is a great falling away, and the effeminacy in Music and in Worship are merely signs of that happening. We, the real we, the blood washed and blood bought ones, have forgotten that the Church is a vessel for waging war for the souls of men. That is a pretty masculine charge, and the problem is “we” don’t teach that. There is plenty of teaching on the “bride”, but not much emphasis on warfare, and that is our fault.
    My personal favorite album is called Rejoice and Be Glad, an all male Scottish Choir recorded in the 50’s, and digitally restored by none other than me!

  6. Dave Mallinak
    August 30, 2008 at 9:26 am

    I suppose there are plenty of ways to take the “we” — but I meant we as in the church to which I belong. And yes, in that sense, “we” have not forgotten that we are waging war. We do teach that. We do emphasize warfare.

    I am not saying that Fanny Crosby or others are wrong to sing. I’m all for variety. The point I was making is that we will not get back to Biblical Masculinity in music until we return to Psalm-singing, and to an emphasis on the great hymns of conquest in our worship.

    It is hard to play piano effeminately while the congregation is singing, ” Set thou a wicked man over him: and let Satan stand at his right hand. When he shall be judged, let him be condemned: and let his prayer become sin. Let his days be few; and let another take his office. Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow. Let his children be continually vagabonds, and beg: let them seek their bread also out of their desolate places. Let the extortioner catch all that he hath; and let the strangers spoil his labour. Let there be none to extend mercy unto him: neither let there be any to favour his fatherless children. Let his posterity be cut off; and in the generation following let their name be blotted out. Let the iniquity of his fathers be remembered with the LORD; and let not the sin of his mother be blotted out. Let them be before the LORD continually, that he may cut off the memory of them from the earth.”

    Or while singing, “Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth. There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet. And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind. He made darkness his secret place; his pavilion round about him were dark waters and thick clouds of the skies. At the brightness that was before him his thick clouds passed, hail stones and coals of fire. The LORD also thundered in the heavens, and the Highest gave his voice; hail stones and coals of fire. Yea, he sent out his arrows, and scattered them; and he shot out lightnings, and discomfited them.”

    Or, “For by thee I have run through a troop; and by my God have I leaped over a wall. As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him. For who is God save the LORD? or who is a rock save our God? It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect. He maketh my feet like hinds’ feet, and setteth me upon my high places. He teacheth my hands to war, so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms.”

    The girly-boy piano-players would find a need to change their ways.

  7. Mike Marshall
    August 30, 2008 at 6:37 pm

    I see your point. I think we could hire some folks to help with that. There names are Hanz and Franz, and they would take care of the little girly-boy piano players! (yes, useless tidbits of Americana that are still stuck in my brain).

    I will admit, I do prefer some nice 4/4 Sousa style hymns like The Fight Is On that make you want to fall in and start marching over “I’ve come to the garden alone (Yawnnnnnnnnnnn) while dew is still on the zzzzzzzz.

  8. Caleb Lynch
    September 10, 2008 at 11:14 am

    Mr. Dave Mallinak
    My name is Caleb Lynch. Yes, you may recognize the name. The man whom you mentioned in your blog as an…what was it again?…effeminate piano player?…yes, that’s my dad. I’m not sure what your Bible says about slander, but I would love to ask how the comments you made were Biblically sound. You don’t even know my dad and in fact, if you did know him, instead of making back-biting comments, you would understand that he is one of the most “manly men” you will ever meet in your life, as well as Ron Hamilton, with whom I’m good friends. While you were sitting writing this blog, my dad was probably out running as he so faithfully does every single day. I would love to see you run with him the 7 – 10 miles that he runs almost every day. If you would like to make sure that I’m telling the truth, ask anyone who knows him personally. They will tell you.
    I don’t tend to be this harsh. I’m not at all like this. But, when I read comments made about the individual who I would consider the most influential person in my spiritual growth, outside of Jesus Christ, in my life…yes, I do tend to get angry. I’m not angry at you sir. Please understand. But when you attack someone, please think about how this would be building up the body of Christ. Also, think about meeting the one who you’re attacking first as well. And then finally, my Bible says that if you have ought against a brother, you should go to him yourself.
    Thanks so much for your time.
    If you would like to email me, my email is calebnlynch@gmail.com
    Caleb Lynch

  9. Chad
    September 10, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    I love this blog post, and I’ll tell you why. It is because it represents everything that is wrong with the way blogging is done in evangelical circles today. A few bullets if I may…

    1.The consistent assumption is made throughout this post that this effeminate worship is relevant to many, if not most churches in our circles. I have blessed to be able to travel around to scores of churches in America over the past year. I don’t know where you’re getting this from, because much of the new music that I have been privy to has been increasingly, and encouragingly doctrinally rich. It appears to me that some of our generations thirst for strong theology has been paying off in songs such as “Not What My Hands Have Done,” “My Jesus Fair,” and the new rendition of “Complete in Thee.” And these are just a few. Weak, effeminate theology? Someone has either been napping or so out of the loop that he has no clue of what’s really going on. I’m guessing the latter.

    2. It is ignorant. Plain and simple. Mac Lynch is a personal friend of mine. To call that man, or associate him with being effeminate is laughable. Sir, you have no idea of what you speak of. It’s ignorant, it’s divisive, and as a friend of the Lynch family, I find it offensive.

    3. Finally, I would like to thank you. I would like to thank you because it is blog post like these that cause me to fall on my knees and plead that I never lose such sight of the cross, and fail to rejoice in the cause of Christ.
    Thank you.

  10. Jessica Baker
    September 11, 2008 at 9:15 am

    By your own admission your experience is limited to your circles. Having grown up in the same church as you, I remember believing that musical men were effeminate. In fact, in the early days of our A.C.E. school, we had an effeminate male high school student who played the piano. Remember him?

    But step outside of those circles sometime and you will find many manly men who play the piano. They are indeed a blessing. I’ve seen plenty of cowboy boot-wearing, gun-totin’, burly guys who play the piano (and other instruments) quite well.

    It is my opinion, that you used some misapplied logic regarding what produces prissy boys. Playing Mac Lynch or Ron Hamilton music does not = prissy boys. Certainly there would have to be other factors in a young man’s life to produce feminism. There are prissy boys who like heavy metal music and there are masculine men who like “In the Garden”. 😀

    Having met Mac Lynch, I can testify that he is not effeminate, nor does he write “prissy music”. He has been given a talent by God and he is using that talent for God’s glory. He is not writing worldly CCM “music” or “Christian” rock. Do you believe that God gifts different people differently? Just because a particular writer’s genre isn’t your preference does not mean what they write is “effeminate” or “prissy”, nor does it mean that those writers produce such musicians.

    Having said all that, our church doesn’t even use music from the Wilds – probably because they’ve never heard of the place. 😀

    We do, however, enjoy wonderfully deep, theological hymns like “Praise Ye the Lord, the Almighty”, “Love Divine”, “Immortal, Invisible” and many others with just a sprinkle of the fluffier stuff.

    I do believe you are promoting a balanced musical diet with heavy emphasis on the stuff that is good for you. After all, a person would be unhealthy if he ate cotton candy all the time. So it is with Christian music.

  11. Jessica Baker
    September 11, 2008 at 9:21 am

    Followup post…

    Maybe there are mainly women doing the musical teaching in some circles because of the idea that piano-playing men are effeminate? Sounds like a vicious cycle to me…

    All of the best musical programs in my experience have been directed by men, piano-playing men, men with lots of kids, men who play football…

    Glad to know your son is taking piano lessons.

  12. September 13, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    Caleb,

    I hope that you will allow me to offer a defense of what I am saying, and that you will take my word for what I am not saying.

    First, I did not call your dad an effeminate piano player. I’m not sure where you read that I said that, because I’m not seeing it in my post. I didn’t know that your dad played piano, nor did I even comment on his piano-playing. And I do not call your dad effeminate.

    Since you are his son, I want you to know a couple of things right off the bat. I enjoy Francis Havergal’s music. I enjoy the music of Fanny Crosby. I enjoy some of the music of Ron Hamilton. In fact, I mentioned one of his songs that happens to be one of my favorites in my post. I’m sure that you took the time to read the entire post, so you noticed that already, no doubt. If you also read the comments, then you also noticed that I already said these things. But for your sake, let me add that I admire your father in several ways, and I want to be very clear here that the point of my post was not to say that Mac Lynch is effeminate. If I gave that impression, then let me clarify — I don’t think this.

    A group of men in our church produced a CD a few years ago. Glenn Christiansen helped us with the orchestrations. We used several of your dad’s songs, including my personal favorite of his, “My God is Near.” I have appreciated his emphasis on sound musical arrangement and Biblical content. Our choir often sings arrangements from The Wilds, from your father, and from Majesty Music.

    Here is my argument. But before I make it, I will admit that I am going to use a generalization here. I realize that what I am about to say is not characteristic of all the music that comes out of the Wilds, or from your father. There are exceptions, and I would add, some notable exceptions. But much of the music that comes out of the Wilds and Majesty Music focuses on the feminine response of mankind to the advances of Christ, rather than on the masculine aspects of the work of Almighty God. Much of this particular genre of music emphasizes man’s feelings about God, rather than the attributes and mighty deeds of the God of Battles.

    In the past, churches emphasized the masculine aspects of God in His mighty works. There has been a notable shift over the past century in the other direction. I do not say that it is wrong to sing of our feelings. We certainly find that in the pattern of Biblical music (in Psalmody). But it is not the major emphasis.

    And that is the point of what I said. I believe that there needs to be an emphasis on the one, and not the other. And yet, I find that there are churches who sing nothing but the Wilds, Mac Lynch, and Majesty Music.

    If I wasn’t clear before, then please allow me to state it plainly now. While it is fine to sing arrangements and songs from these men, we must return to an emphasis on Psalm-singing, and the majestic Hymns of Conquest that once characterized our worship. That was the main argument that I put forth for effeminacy amongst musicians. I was arguing that without this emphasis, we will continue to produce this kind of piano-player.

  13. September 13, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    I wanted to hear Pastor Mallinak’s answer first, so I didn’t say anything about these comments until he had written and I like his answer. I “like” the songs by Hamilton and Lynch too, but we don’t use them in our church. I have no particular personal beef with either of them. My goal is to give God what He wants in worship. The Psalms are a guide for that and the emphasis of the Psalms, as Pastor Mallinak has so well put, should reveal itself.

    If there is anything that we need to be able to criticize, it is worship. We worship God personally, but our worship isn’t personal, that is, it isn’t a taste. A lot of what I hear from Mac Lynch, that is intended to be worship, sounds close to a Disney show tune. I think God does want us to enjoy some music like he wants us to enjoy a piece of pecan pie. However, the music that is offered to God should be sanctified, that is, it should not smack one bit of profanity or commonality. I wish that I could express this better, but I believe there are many here that know what I mean. If anyone that understands what I mean would also like to write here about it and say it better, I invite them to do that. I realize; however, that because music has become so personal, it becomes off limits for critique without a lot of emotion being involved.

    One more thing about Ron Hamilton. I can’t judge the man’s intentions, but I believe he has done a great disservice to the church, even if he didn’t mean to do so. He has turned Christian music into entertainment to millions of children. The Christian music becomes foremost a matter of personal enjoyment instead of a matter of worship. I don’t care how sincere or how well-intended he may have been, this has been what has occurred. I don’t have my children listening to Patch music because Christian music becomes just another fleshly lust. Their musical taste also becomes something not in line, I believe, with the nature of God.

    Part of the attraction of Patch music is that kids will love the music, the entertaining nature of it, and those character traits will rub off on them through the storyline and lyrics. I see just the opposite happening. Kids listen to it because it’s fun and they become more self-centered always wanting something that will be more fun for them. A little fun here or there is great, but Patch serves up fun, fun, fun, and kids are so addicted to it that anything that doesn’t serve their self-gratification is not-fun and, therefore, bad. You can see what that would do to discernment as well.

    I realize that the kind of music that Patch and Mac sell are popularly written in a way that they will sell. They don’t seem to be there to elevate people’s affections for God. They exude passion but are missing in what Jonathan Edwards called “religious affection.”

    Fire away everyone.

  14. September 15, 2008 at 5:04 am

    While I do not necessarily agree with your total music philosophy, Brother Kent, I will say this. The psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs that a redeemed soul sings in concert with his fellow Believers in a local New Testament church should be of more substance than most that we sing.

    As to Brother Ron Hamilton and “Patch the Pirate”, I agree with you completely. I liken this program to a slightly more “fundamental” Veggie Tales.

    But, without a doubt, the largest problem I have with almost all of these things is the lack of “fear of God” that they instill in children and adults. I don’t think this is intentional, having met Brother Hamilton, I believe that he loves the Lord and is doing what he thinks is right. But, I am still bothered by it.

    That wasn’t much of a shot, was it?

  15. September 15, 2008 at 2:06 pm

    Only a flesh wound, Art. Pun intended.

  16. Dave Mallinak
    September 16, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    Some great additional thoughts, and I appreciate them, especially what you said, Kent. This has been an issue that I have been mulling over for some time now. I have struggled to put my finger on exactly what the problem is, and I would say that I am just now reaching conclusions on it.

    Over the week end, I found myself thinking over Caleb and his friend’s comments. We like our “feelies” and our emotions, and we are very defensive of them. It most certainly is true that we as Christians love the relationship we have with God, and that we find it inspiring. I have no problem with that. We certainly find some references to this in the Psalms. But these subjective feelings have dominated Fundamentalism for some thirty or more years.

    Perhaps this is a high place that has exalted itself against the knowledge of God. Perhaps we could say that it is so because it projects itself as being above criticism. Perhaps a Jerubbaal needs to cast it down.

    I didn’t really address the feelings I get from the majority of the Majesty offerings. I wasn’t sure that I could adequately describe it. I would just say that they feel soft, like pillows or feathers or lukewarm water. They aren’t the kinds of tunes that one would use for Psalm 18, or Psalm 144, or Psalm 109. Tunes like that don’t work for Anthems of Conquest.

    Caleb, if you are still reading, we don’t mind if you want to engage in the conversation. We feel that it is a conversation that we need to have.

  17. Drew Banner
    September 17, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Ok this bashing is hilarious and I feel compelled to respond to this ludicras post. First of all everything is relative, if you Pastor Mallinak are a Pastor of a church and Im assuming spend 90% of your time at your church, how doyou know what others are singing? So you cant speak for the masses, so please dont. I think I know your response… you hear from other pastors who hear from other pastors… Secondly, it is a complete lie to think churches are wrong for singing too much about Grace and the Love and forgiveness of our Lord. Yes everything has to be done in moderation but I think over doing it when it comes to singing Godly music is a pretty maligned view. Ron Hamilton and those that come up with this music have done a heap of alot more to further Christianity then either you or me have done so I would politely back away from the bashing of those men. Along the same lines, Im am in no way a Bible scholar but for 23 years now I have been in a solid church so I think I can speak about the contents of the Bible for a little bit. Yes the God I believe in is a God of war and battling and fighting and judgement but he is also a God of love, grace, repentance etc. the new testament is where we get our mold of the church and how to do things and correct me if Im wrong but about 70% of the Jesus’s teachings are about forgiveness and grace and and love. Yes there are churches out there that believe in punishing and judging to keep the crowd intact but my Bible teaches a very real forgiving God. I hate to say this but most likely you didnt accept Christ because He battled and judged and tormented you…no you became a Christian through a very loving and forgiving God. So in retrospect let these men keep putting there music out and if you dont like it dont sing it. If you feel like Fanny Crosby’s music replaced some very amazing music… DONT SING HER MUSIC!!! Its a pretty simple solution to your “patch factor”. O and by the way, if you find some better music and stories for my children to listen to that is not “patchy” please let me know I would love to hear it…
    In conclusion, Caleb Lynch was slightly off when he said that your post called his dad and others effeminent because you never said those words… but basically without saying those words you have laid back and put a “sissy” Christian era on those Godly men’s backs and I am here to say you are completely dead wrong. This is like the media when it bashes the war from the side lines and all us get out of shape and mad, you sir have done the same thing regarding this music. IF YOU HAVE SOME BETTER MUSIC… I WOULD LOVE TO HEAR IT!

  18. September 17, 2008 at 10:27 pm

    It makes me laugh. It makes me laugh. It makes me laugh. It makes me laugh. It makes me laugh. It makes me laugh. I laughed. I couldn’t help laughing. It was hilarious. It was ridiculous. It made me laugh. I laughed.

    Was there anything I missed?

    If you need some good music:

    http://www.trinitybookservice.org/09001.html

    Click on this:

    http://www.fpcr.org/catalog/catalog-online.htm

    Scroll down a few inches and you’ll see “The Comprehensive Psalter” with a red cover.

    Enjoy.

  19. Drew Banner
    September 18, 2008 at 2:39 pm

    Funny????????????????????????????????????????????????????? We are talking about children in this post not adults! Of course that is good music but not for children. The only thing that is funny is that you seem to think these websites will fit your young children. Please tell when your children were 2 years old you sat them down and gave them “The Comprehensive Psalter” to read. Will they like this music at 2,3,4, yrs. old? Of course not!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The “Patch Factor” has little to do with the “sissifying” of christian young people and here is how I will prove it: Guns dont kill people, people kill people! Dont blame the agent for the demise of the young ones blame the parents for letting their children listen to that music a little too much and not breaking them off it at the right time. You guys are hilarious because you all are so smart but in some things you men seem childish.

  20. Pastor Bobby Mitchell
    September 18, 2008 at 7:34 pm

    I’ve stayed out of this one, but I want to just give a word to Drew: You should stop and consider what you are typing and to whom. I mean think Scripturally here.

    Also, in answer to your question about kids and Psalters– I am a father of five with number six due in a couple of weeks. My oldest is eight years. My kids sing the Psalms with zeal and they love them. Now, I don’t know any two year olds that can read anything such as your post refers to, but we have a lot of toddlers who are learning to sing from the Psalter and they enjoy it here at Mid-Coast Baptist Church.

    I look at Patch the Pirate as I do cupcakes and ice cream. A little bit now and then can be fine, but it had better not be the steady diet. BTW, my kids have learned to read from the Authorized King James Version and they have no trouble reading it. Just thought you might find that interesting.

  21. September 18, 2008 at 9:29 pm

    Drew,

    I’m open to your real criticism. “I laughed” and “it was funny” don’t hold much in the way of evidence. They would work perhaps with a still unconverted elementary student like how negative peer pressure works to influence jr. highers.

    Worship is offered to God. Period. It’s not about us. Look up every time that we see its direction in the Bible, ninety times, and it is always to God. We train our children to sing what God wants, even as Pastor Mitchell has mentioned that he does with his children. Your way really is a new way historically, that is, it is something that was invented by pop Christianity to satisfy American consumers who view the world as revolving around themselves in concert with their child-centered parenting. No where does Scripture say that worship adjusts to us, our tastes, our feelings, our age, or our culture. It all adjusts to Who God is.

  22. Drew Banner
    September 19, 2008 at 11:51 am

    Pastor Mitchell I would totally agree and that is why I said everything must be done in moderation in the fourth or fifth line of my fist comment. To Pastor Brandenburg, I agree that all worship is directed to God but I dont think Ron Hamilton is trying to get that out of his music. I might be mistaken because I have never asked him but I think he puts out his music for the entertainment of children. This is the reason why moderation would be best used. If we look at it in light of entertainment for our children, I would take his music and stories over television and cartoons and music of today!

  23. Chad
    September 20, 2008 at 6:52 am

    Philippians 1:27 – “With one mind, striving together for the faith of the gospel.”

    Sadly, I think the writers of this blog have missed the point.

  24. Pastor Bobby Mitchell
    September 20, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    Chad,

    The same Paul also wrote, “Prove all things.”

  25. Chad
    September 22, 2008 at 1:36 pm

    and again…

  26. Dave Mallinak
    September 24, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    Chad and Drew,

    I think that a part of striving together includes self-examination and self-criticism. Unfortunately, most think that this kind of self-criticism applies to the other guy. We have not placed ourselves above criticism — we have allowed all of your comments (including Josh’s disjointed railings), and have attempted to answer those that were relevant. We are allowing you to criticize us. I for one don’t mind it.

    But it says something about fundamentalism as a whole that whenever we question one of the “heroes” of the movement, it is taken so personally, and raises such a furor of pleas for unity. It is very bad for the movement if we put unity above truth, if we elevate personalities to the place that they are above any sort of question.

    And yet, we find that we get the same thing if we critique Jack Hyles, Jack Schaap, Clarence Sexton, or (now) Ron Hamilton. These are the heroes. We JackHammers are fair game for criticism, and nobody quotes verses about unity when we catch a little heat. But the sacred cows of senti-fundamentalism are off limits. Critiques become bashing when directed towards the idol.

  27. Caleb Lynch
    October 7, 2008 at 2:46 pm

    Sadly, it seems as if I’ve been missing out on a lot. There is a reason why I haven’t checked this blog (or any blog for that matter).
    Gentlemen, my brothers in Christ…would it be too much to ask for this subject to be dropped? I respect each of your thoughts, even though I don’t agree with most, along with some of the attitudes that were put on display. Again, I say that I respect them. When I stand before God someday, I’m going to give an account of my life before Him, not before anyone else. Each one of us will do the same. On the topic of this blog however, in light of eternity, how does this matter? Perhaps I even put too much of a spotlight on the subject, and for that I feel as if I created disunity in the body of Christ. There is never an excuse for the Body to be at odds. I can only pray that each statement that was said in this blog never had an evil thought, never had a prideful thought, and never had a bitter thought.
    Gentlemen, the time that I’ve spent writing this blog and the time that has been spent on all the statements could have been used in a more useful way…such as spending time with our Heavenly Father. However, I wanted to address this and let all involved know that you are my brothers. Even though I’m young, and even though I don’t know as much about the Scriptures that I would like, I do know this…that there is never, never to be any odds in the Body of Christ. There may need to be some reconciliation on all parts, but that’s not my responsibility. My responsibility is that there are no odds between myself and my brother. If I have offended in some way, I was wrong. Praise God for His Grace, Amen?
    My position stills stands on this whole subject, but brothers, let us move onward, in the Spirit, with love. May we unify ourselves? By God’s Grace, men, we most certainly can.
    In Christ,
    Caleb Lynch

  28. USAFwife!
    October 13, 2008 at 9:07 am

    I don’t think music makes a little boy effiminate or gay. I have seen some fruity boys playing the piano and other instruments and I have seen some very masculine men playing them as well. My father played the piano and flute and had a love and passion for music. I don’t know many men manlier than my father. My opinion is not laced with doctrine and I am not a scholar. I have been in these “circles” that you all are referring to for some time, though. I think there is a decline in manly fathers. Parents need to make sure that they are not raising feminine sons. How can you blame the music teacher or the songs you sing at church for making your child effiminate? I had several boys as piano students-they were not feminine. Their parents had them managing their own lawn care business and building things around their home. I don’t think they will be blaming me if their son is femenine nor will they blame the song leader because we sang “In the Garden” at church. How silly!
    On Caleb-the young man was simply defending his father. He has every right to do that, too. I would have done so in a heartbeat-and I would have been much fiercer than he!

  29. October 13, 2008 at 5:35 pm

    Dear Folks,

    I’ve read quite a lot about this recently and it is true that playing piano and flute do not make anyone effeminate. Here is the situation, boys with an artistic temperament tend to become homosexuals more than other temperaments. All studies show this. This is why schools of art and music are often full of effeminate and/or homosexual men. The trends in music then can easily tend toward feminine styles of music, either in style or substance. You put it all together and you the artistic temperaments writing and playing music and spreading their styles and compositions into all of the music world.

    Christians, knowing God’s given design of masculinity and the male role, need to be careful about this. We need to encourage masculinity in our artistic boys and then choose masculine music for our men to play and sing.

    On the other hand, we could just ignore it because we’re afraid of being labeled bigots and intolerant by even professing Christians who would choose to put their heads in the sand. I choose not to ignore it. None of us should.

  30. Dave Mallinak
    October 14, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    In answer to USAFwife!, I don’t think anyone spoke ill of Caleb for defending his father. I certainly do not. In fact, I would say that it speaks well of his father that his son would speak up for him. The only thing that I said was that Caleb read too much into what I have written. And, to be frank, I think that USAFwife! has done the same thing. The purpose of the article to which you are responding is not to say that all musicians turn out to be effeminate. Read the article again. The purpose was to point out some possible reasons why SOME male musicians become effeminate, and to give some thoughts on how to avoid this.

  31. Dave Mallinak
    October 14, 2008 at 1:23 pm

    I do not say that music causes young men to become effeminate. I should make that clear from the outset. And yet, for some reason, young men who spend inordinate amounts of time in music tend towards effeminacy. Why is this?

    I absolutely deny in no uncertain terms that the problem lies in the nature of music itself. God made music, and made it for men.

    These are taken from the article itself, as a case in point of what I was NOT saying in the article.

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