Should Christians Listen to Secular Music? Many Christians often debate this issue and it’s possible that people can agree to disagree on this matter.
Some Christians have strong convictions that it is absolutely wrong to listen to any kind of secular music while other Christians are of the viewpoint that one can listen to certain types of secular music as long as discernment and wisdom is exercised.
When it comes to whether or not a Christian should listen to secular music it is important to ask yourself the following important questions:
1. Does the secular music communicate an ungodly message?
2. Does the secular music influence your thoughts, your mood and your behavior in an ungodly way?
3. Does the secular music hinder your spiritual growth?
4. Will listening to secular music cause your Christian brother / sister to stumble?
5. What is the purpose of music?
Does the Secular Music Communicate an Ungodly Message?
There’s no doubt at all that many of the secular music today tend to promote such issues as adultery, drug abuse, the love of money, pornography and even homosexuality. The music artists not only promote an ungodly message and lifestyle in their songs, but they also literally live the same lifestyle that they sing about.
Music is a powerful communication tool. Therefore it’s important to not only enjoy the beat and the rhythm of the music, but it’s also very important to listen to the lyrics of the music in order to understand the message that is being communicated and to ascertain whether the message is godly or ungodly. There are many secular songs and music videos that have subliminal messages and it’s therefore important to hear and understand the lyrics of any song.
Does the Secular Music Influence Your Thoughts, Mood & Behavior in an Ungodly Way?
Music is not only a very powerful way of communicating, but music can be very entertaining and influential. Music can influence our mood, our thoughts and our behavior.
Secular music is particularly influential to children and teenagers. In fact, most of the popular secular music are marketed for the kids and teenagers.
It’s important that the music we hear should lead us to having righteous thoughts and righteous behavior.
Philippians 4:8-9 says “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
Does the Secular Music Hinder Your Spiritual Growth?
Does the secular music cause you to backslide or to divert from the things of God in a slow and subtle way? It is almost certain that listening to secular music that promotes an ungodly message will certainly cause problems in one’s spiritual life and hinder a person’s relationship with God
We must therefore be careful to guard our heart and to be aware of the things that can hinder our spiritual growth.
Whatever causes us to stumble or sin – we should remove from our lives (Matthew 5:29-30).
Will Listening to Secular Music Cause Your Christian Brother / Sister to Stumble?
You might be a Christian who has no problem with listening to secular music. However one has to be conscientious when in the presence of other Christians who might have the opposite view about secular music. Therefore if you’re a Christian who sometimes listens to secular music, it’s advisable to avoid listening to that type of music in the presence of a Christian who might become offended or stumble.
In 1 Corinthians 8:13, Paul was referring to meat – but however the analogy can be used when referring to music. If the music you listen to causes your brother to stumble then its best to refrain from it.
What is the Purpose of Music?
The primary purpose of music from the very beginning has always been to praise and give glory to God.
Colossians 3:17,23 says that in whatever we do, in word or deed, we must do it in the Lord’s name and not to men.
Music is therefore an expression and a powerful way to communicate our adoration for God.
While there are secular music that speak positive messages and are able to uplift people, the ultimate purpose of music is for man to give honor and glory to God.
Should Christians Be Legalistic About Music?
Admittedly, not all secular music is evil; Not all secular music promotes a bad message and so it’s not always appropriate to take a fully legalistic approach to this issue. However, discernment is important.
Christianity is not a list of rules of do’s and don’ts. However care must be taken that we focus on doing that which is ultimately beneficial for the glory of God and God’s kingdom.
If as a Christian you have no problem with listening to secular music, the most important thing is to assess the 5 questions or guidelines above and to ensure that you do not listen to any secular music that communicates an ungodly message and negatively affect your relationship with God and with your neighbor.