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Old 03-06-2009, 01:45 PM
 
Location: Bronx, NY
1,289 posts, read 2,011,347 times
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You make a lot of good points, Carlos but while we're at it, perhaps we should include the Christian filmmakers who try to counter the drivel that comes out of Hollywood these days; or maybe the Christian satellite companies that bring worthwhile TV into our homes rather than the network garbage that's on today; should we include the many Bible colleges in our country who teach us the Word and how to become outstanding ministers/leaders that help guide the flocks? There are others I'm sure and I would be the first to say that there are those in all of these categories, music industry included, who abuse the privileges of their profession but then there are many others who tithe a very big portion of their proceeds to church or charities or do a lot to help others. If the money folks make from doing what God has given them the ability to do and they use it to further His Kingdom, I don't really see anything wrong with it. We should all be able to do good things with whatever God has blessed us with.
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Old 03-06-2009, 02:41 PM
 
4,437 posts, read 5,866,132 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos123 View Post
Incidentally selling a house for a profit can also be greedy. If we are selling the house for more than we paid for it simply to enlarge out bank accounts. We should do ALL to the glory and honor of God.
Ok.. and I asked if thats what you do.

I mean where does it stop? Maybe someone has a gift for juggling. Do they make a living out of it and give all their compensation to the needy in the name of God?

I'm just asking what you do in your daily life and if you life up to the same standards that you are asking about for the music industry.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos123 View Post
The crux of the issue as to whether the sale of house or the sale of Christian music is greedy has to do with WHY we want to make money.
Greedy is a relative term. What may be greedy to me for instance wouldn't be greedy to Terell Owns (he has much more money than I do).

So then it comes down to a person issue with the person and their God right? And really.. who am I to question that relationship right?

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos123 View Post
Is it for self? Just for self? To further our interests in this life or God's?
Well lets talk about it. Do you have some information concerning their financials that would spread some light on the subject? Do you know how much they give back (or don't give back)?

Maybe the protect their works because they feel like they can do better with the charitable dollars than you or I. Who are we to judge them considering whe know nothing about their personal or corporate income statement.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos123 View Post
If a Christian musician can honestly say that they want to make money from their music such that only those who pay will be allowed to listen to their God inspired music...for the honor and glory of God then there is nothing wrong that.
There is nothing wrong with that or anything else. You don't know what they do with their money. You don't know how they spend it.. unless again you have some information that would spread some light on the subject. Maybe they take their money and give half away.. I don't know.. but that said neither do you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos123 View Post
But how a Christian musician can do that when the God who inspires that music wants all to freely hear what He inspires in us to write, talk, and sing about...is quite beyond me to justify. Scripturally at least.
He inspires a doctor to. Should the doctor not be paid? What about a teachers.. teachers have to be some of the most inspired people I've ever met.. should they not be paid? Seriously? maybe I'm missing something here...

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos123 View Post
Jesus gave His words to the world freely. We should all go and do likewise for the true honor and glory of God. Trusting in Him to provide for our needs as we focus on loving others.
Tell you what.. find out what they do with the dollars they receive and pass your judgement then.. until then its just a topic that you have no evidence for one way or another..
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Old 03-06-2009, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Living in the San Diego area
1,039 posts, read 1,290,151 times
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Bigthirsty,

I hope you don't me not quoting what you share at length (for the sake of shortening my post here) but I would like to comment overall on what you have been sharing again.

Let me make a couple of things as clear as I can make them.

No matter what may seem logical or reasonable by man's perspective it is what God thinks as described in the Bible that matters. What is highly esteemed in the eyes of man the Bible says is detestable in the eyes of God. So we should and must not look at the way of the world and what seems logical or rationale as a basis for determining what God would have us do.

We should look to the Bible and what it says.

As an overall principle...biblically speaking God gives to us freely. In all things. He gives us life and sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. He gives us all things to enjoy subject to being sanctified (or given His blessing for us to use things) based on what His Word allows us. And ultimately His mercy and gracious generosity culminated in the greatest expression of His love...sending Jesus to die in our place.

He does not charge us anything for what He gives us. And gives it all freely.

So my first point is if God is that way with us should we not, as a principle of living, be that way with one another? I think the answer to that question is most definitely yes.

We are to glorify God in all things. What does that mean? I believe that biblically it means that we are to draw attention to Him. To display His character and characteristics through our life such that the way we live points to Him. We act like Him. We respond like He would to things. We love as He does. We act in His place in this world. We are to live in such a way that when people see us they see Him.

That is what Jesus did in the sense that when others saw Jesus they saw the Father. He did all things to please the Father. He did not glorify Himself but rather glorified the Father. He spoke and did only that which He saw the Father speaking and doing.

And as Jesus did that, He is doing and wants to do that through us today. His life in us doing that which He did while on Earth. As the Father sent Him so He has sent us to act in His place. In His name.

Jesus was the representation of all the spiritual gifts in the Church today. He embodied in His person all the gifts that are present in the Church today. He was prophet and teacher, administrator, and every other gift you can think of all rolled into one man. Himself.

We the Church are His Body today. He is no longer physical present on this Earth apart from us.

And within the Church are found the various gifts that were present in Him.

Jesus did not charge a penny to exercise the gifts that He had for the welll being of those around Him. Not one cent.

And neither should we.

He gave His all and became poor that we might become rich in Him.

We should do likewise.

He did not limit the operation of any of His gifts to being exercised only for or in the presence of those who could pay to support Him in some way.

Neither should we.

When looking at this or any other issue we need to look to the example of Jesus Christ and view what we are contemplating through the lens of His life.

If it passes the lens of His life with respect to being something that Jesus would have done then it is fine for us to do the same. If not then we should not do it.

Now don't anybody get silly on me and start pointing out that Jesus wore robes and that I am therefore saying that we should all do likewise.

I am referring to those things that Jesus did and was that reflect God's character. Yes...Jesus was God but He was also man. And He modeled for us the kind of lifestyle and outlook on the things of God that we are to have. He is our example.

Jesus I am sure made a profit as a carpenter. It is not wrong to make a profit in a worldly occupation. Paul and others modeled that for us too. It is a God honoring thing to make a living, pay for one's needs, and then have something left over to share with others.

No one, biblically speaking, modeled a demanding of money from others before those others could enjoy the benefit of a spiritual gift operating in the lives of those exercising their gift.

Such a model of operation simply does not exist biblically speaking.

How are we to glorify God by charging for Christian music that the Lord Himself intends to be used for the edification of members of His Body? How is that Christlike?

If it is claimed that it is Christlike where is the example of it biblically speaking? Show me one such example anywhere in the New Testament. There is none.

Not one.

I don't know how to explain this any clearer than this. It's hard because some people simply don't seem to get it. It's like there is a cloud over their hearts. They keep pointing to how things could not possibly work under the biblical model. And it is the biblical model that they are fighting against. For the model in use today by Christian colleges, bible schools, Christian book sellers, Christian counseling (where such counselors charge) and whatever have you of forcing people to pay to receive that which they have to offer simply doesn't exist biblically speaking.

Much of the so-called Christian world of today practices things which are unbiblical. Which Christ and the apostles would never have done as a matter of principal.

I will answer more in another post.

Carlos
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Old 03-06-2009, 09:51 PM
 
Location: Living in the San Diego area
1,039 posts, read 1,290,151 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigthirsty View Post
Ok.. and I asked if thats what you do.

I mean where does it stop? Maybe someone has a gift for juggling. Do they make a living out of it and give all their compensation to the needy in the name of God?
Bigthirsty...I never said that we should all turn around and give whatever we make in any endeavor to the needy. I believe if you re-read what I said...my emphasis was on doing things to the glory of God. The glory of God may involve making enough to feed our families. It may involve making enough to enable us to go hang out and enjoy sweet fellowship with other Christians. It may involve making enough to get a new car. All manner of things that do not directly involve giving to the needy.

Every single penny we earn is God's! It is no longer our own. When a person becomes a Christian they surrender their lives and all they own to God. It is no longer their own to do with as they wish to do with it. It is all God's. Every single penny and every single minute of our lives is God's. It belongs to Him to do with as He wishes to do with it.

Would God have us make a profit from an endeavour? Then we should make a profit because God wills it so.

Would God have Christian musicians, and Bible schools, and Christian counselors, and others charge such that only those able to pay will receive the benefit of what God has inspired and given to those persons doing the charging?

Would He? I don't think so. Such a thing does not line up with the benevolent goodness of God.

Quote:
I'm just asking what you do in your daily life and if you life up to the same standards that you are asking about for the music industry.
Absolutely I live up to the same standards that I am asking of the music industry. I have thought of writing a book or two about Christian things but in line with what I have been saying I will not force people to pay for such books. They will be given away freely.

I have thought of making a living from speaking to Christians but in line with what I have been saying...all such speaking will be at no charge.

I am charging nothing for anything in my life that God has inspired in me to write or do for the edification of believers or for winning the lost.

I even thought today of writing tracks but not with the intention of making a living from it but rather so as to more effectively reach the lost.

God knows my needs. I do not need to keep to myself anything He inspires in me and to protect it through an exclusive copyright or otherwise such that I will make money by forcing those who could gain from what the Lord wants to share with others through me, to pay for it. Mind you I am not saying that I will never copyright anything. Glorifying God may involve copyrighting something but not for the purpose of protecting my ability to make money from it. Rather it may involve copyrighting something to keep others from twisting what I say or otherwise perverting it to say something other than what God intends to say through me.

Quote:
Greedy is a relative term. What may be greedy to me for instance wouldn't be greedy to Terell Owns (he has much more money than I do).
Greedy is not a relative term bigthirsty. The amount of money one gives away or the amount that they have has nothing to do with being greedy. It is a state of heart that withholds good from others that is in one's power to give them for the sake of selfish gain. It is a hording to oneself what God would want us to give away freely.

Greed is one aspect of selfishness which is the opposite of Christlike love. Love gives. Greed as an expression of selfishness takes. Love unselfishly looks out for the interests of others. Greed looks out for our own self interest. Love does not hold in reserve or hold back. Greed is only interested in what it can gain for self.

Quote:
So then it comes down to a person issue with the person and their God right? And really.. who am I to question that relationship right?
What I question is the way that one's in the Christian music industry (and the way many Christians in any number of other "Christian" industries) withhold good from those who simply cannot afford it in the interests of making money for themselves.

Jesus did not do that.

Quote:
Well lets talk about it. Do you have some information concerning their financials that would spread some light on the subject? Do you know how much they give back (or don't give back)?
It is not a question of how much they give back. It is question of why they don't give it all. To honor the God who gave His all for us.

Quote:
Maybe the protect their works because they feel like they can do better with the charitable dollars than you or I. Who are we to judge them considering whe know nothing about their personal or corporate income statement.
Would Jesus have us protect our works so that we could better use the dollars we make according to our own views of what to do with those dollars?

What about what God wants to do with that which we are so desirous of protecting? Do you think God has a greater right to determine what should be done with what He has inspired and gifted in us to do than we ourselves have?

Quote:
...You don't know what they do with their money. You don't know how they spend it.. unless again you have some information that would spread some light on the subject. Maybe they take their money and give half away.. I don't know.. but that said neither do you.
Every penny I have and make belongs to God. To do as He pleases to do with it through me or others. It does not belong to me. It is His.

And whether you care to believe it or not every penny I have and make belongs to the Body of Christ since His Body is...well...His. As the rightful owner my money as a member of His Body belongs to Him and through Him to all my brothers and sisters in Christ. They have as much right to determine what God does with the money He has entrusted to me as Jesus Christ Himself does when they are walking in the Spirit and being directed by Him.

It is not a matter of what Christian musicians do with their money. I cannot see their money. It is a matter of what they are doing with music that the God of us all has inspired in them. It is His music. His money. And His Body. Their music does not belong to them. It belongs to God. Completely. To do with as He wishes to do with it. Think about that some.

Are Christian musicians doing with God's music what He wants done with it? Overall I daresay that they are not. For God would use every ounce of music created to lift up the hearts of His sheep. Freely and without burdening them with licencing restrictions and demanding that they pay something first.

Quote:
He inspires a doctor to. Should the doctor not be paid? What about a teachers.. teachers have to be some of the most inspired people I've ever met.. should they not be paid? Seriously? maybe I'm missing something here...
Yes...I believe you are missing the thrust of what I am saying. There is nothing wrong with making a living as long as what we do for a living is done God's way. To honor and glorify Him.

Paul the apostle made tents. Jesus for a while did carpentry for which I am sure He was paid.

But such examples do not invalidate what I have been saying.

Gifts of the Spirit are not the same as natural talents (however wonderful they may be).

When I speak about Christian musicians making Christian music I am talking about Christians who are exercising a spiritual gift from God. A teaching or prophetic gift set to music. It is a supernatural gift of God working in the heart of a Christian to create something that could not be created apart from the operation of the Spirit in their hearts.

Producing anointed songs intended by God to freely edify all.

Not all "Christian" musicians operate in such a gifting mind you but when I refer to Christian musicians I refer only to those that do.

There is absolutely no biblical example or principle to stand on with regard to one's that are exercising a spiritual gift demanding payment before they will allow others to be edified through the exercise of their spiritual gift.

The only biblical model that is set before us models a way of being that is the complete opposite of what is practiced today. The biblical model is that we are to give as freely through the exercise of our spiritual gifts as we have been given.

I think at this point I have said just about all I can say on this. I would encourage anyone who still disagrees with what I am saying to approach the Lord in prayer with a heart willing to do whatever He wants asking Him to reveal whether what I (and others) have been saying is of Him and if it is to put it into practice in whatever way they can.

Carlos
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Old 03-06-2009, 10:12 PM
 
1,597 posts, read 618,198 times
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Luke 10:7

The worker is worthy of his wages...even the disciples, and they were doing spiritual work.

Carlos, in principle I can see your point. But in practice, it's not binding. I'm all for providing something for free if someone truly needs it and has no way of paying for it...whether it's a product or service. But for a Christian musician to provide their music for free would mean they'd essentially be homeless, because it takes a great deal of time and energy to make the music. They wouldn't have time for any other job by which they could support themselves.

And think about something else - why do we have to purchase Bibles? Ultimately, if we follow your line of thinking about this subject, shouldn't publishers such as Zondervan and Nelson provide us with free copies of the Holy Bible? They can't do that by virtue of the fact that they simply wouldn't be able to print them due to lack of supplies and manpower.
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Old 03-06-2009, 10:21 PM
 
Location: Living in the San Diego area
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Hi Aquila,

With God all things are possible.

I find it ironic that New Testament Christians had no Zondervan or a recording industry...heck we'd probably find their music terribly boring or even non-existant as anything other than chants...they didn't even have electricity to run musical instruments yet, the principles that I have been laying out allowed God to use them to turn their world upside down with the Gospel.

In many respects with all our Zondervans and Nelson Publishers and this or that...we of today can't even get out of the starting gate.

Something is most definitely wrong with the modern practice of Christianity. At least in North America which is mainly where I have experienced "church".

Could it be that the principles we think to be so impractical for the modern world are not in fact as impractical as we might think them to be?

Just something to ponder in the presence of God.

Carlos
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Old 03-06-2009, 11:10 PM
 
1,597 posts, read 618,198 times
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Carlos, I meant to add before that if the situation ever comes up again and you want to listen to some Christian music free, just head over to MySpace. You don't need to be a member to listen to the music. Just go to the search function at the top of the login page, type in the name of the artist you'd like to hear and be sure to select "Music" in the drop-down menu. If they have an official page...and they most likely will...just click on it in the results list and you will go to their page where you can listen to their albums. If you want to join (it's completely free), you can build playlists that you can listen to over and over whenever you want. Just a thought.
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Old 03-06-2009, 11:15 PM
 
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Carlos.. let me be as clear as possible:

You stated:
Quote:
Originally Posted by carlos123 View Post

I've been trying to listen to some great worship music tonight over the Internet but...much of it is unavailable without buying it. Why? Because someone, either the artist or label company wants to make money from it.
Music is their living.. thats what they do to feed themselves.

You do something to make a living right? The gift you have to do that is from God right? So do you make money from it? What do you do with it?

These are not difficult questions..
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Old 03-07-2009, 12:18 AM
 
Location: Living in the San Diego area
1,039 posts, read 1,290,151 times
Reputation: 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigthirsty View Post
Carlos.. let me be as clear as possible:

You stated:
Music is their living.. thats what they do to feed themselves.

You do something to make a living right? The gift you have to do that is from God right? So do you make money from it? What do you do with it?

These are not difficult questions..
And I encourage you to ask God what He would have you, me, and the Christian musicians do with our lives, the gifts that He has given us, and the money which we are given which belongs to Him and His Body.

Carlos
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Old 03-07-2009, 12:18 AM
 
Location: Maryland
1,756 posts, read 1,527,366 times
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I get what you're saying. I don't know if it's right or wrong, but there's something about it that doesn't always set well with me.

I'm a medical transcriptionist. I'm an excellent typist with very strong skills in spelling and grammar. I make a living using these gifts. I don't see this the same as using my faith or God's name as a way to earn money. I try not to judge when it comes to this because maybe it's just me and it's not wrong at all. Besides, I'd be a hypocrite if I did judge because I have a nice little library of Christian books and a few Christian CDs, all of which I paid for, but I'd be lying if I didn't say I've never had the same thoughts as you because I have.
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