Sunday, July 25, 2010

Hip-Hop, Idolatry & The Church Pt. 9

The Era And Error Of The Cross-Overs

In modern society music has become such a powerful industry, that even those who know that they are being destroyed by it, yield themselves to it as if it has some sort of controlling power. We would have to admit that music does seem to help set the pace for trends and all kinds of communication and association in the modern world. Within the industry, the fame and popularity along with the mass dollars and accolades can be overwhelming for those who are unprepared yet alone for those who are prepared. Artists often set aside personal commitments, compromising values and complete value systems in pursuit of the fame that the industry has to offer.

From Secular Music To Gospel Music

There has always been those who have left the church to sing and pursue secular music. In fact the foundation of modern secular music is arguably the church itself. What many don't know is that at it's early inception, modern gospel music was the product of of the secular music's desire to "cross-over" into the gospel music arena. Thomas A Dorsey (1899-1993) who was a secular blues musician, stated the following regarding his expansion of musical style into the church:

"When I realized how hard some folks were fighting the gospel idea, I was determined to carry the banner."..."I borrowed five dollars and sent out 500 copies of my song, 'If You See My Savior,' to churches throughout the country.... It was three years before I got a single order. I felt like going back to the blues." ~ Score Magazine "The Father of Gospel Music" 1994  
He indicates the "gospel idea" to display the idea of gospel music being driven by what was then deemed as secular music, rhythms and beats.

From Gospel Music To Secular Music
Known as the original cross over singer, Sam Cooke (January 22, 1931 – December 11, 1964) received his training at the age of 10 while a part of the gospel Soul Stirrers, led by Rebert H. Harris. After leaving the group for fame, popularity and money Sam would go on to an astounding career but die under very suspicious circumstances at at the age of 33.

Others who would cross-over in pursuit of the same things are names such as Ashford and Simpson who's gospel name was The Followers, Chuck Jackson of the gospel group Raspberry Singers, Wilson Pickett  from the Violinares, Johnny Taylor of The Highway QCs and Bobby Womack of The Womack Singers who signed with SAR Records -[Sam Cook] and were renamed the Valentinos.

Many of us can remember that it was Aretha Franklin "Soul Sister #1" who forged her career out of the Baptist church of her father Rev. C.L. Franklin. We also know that it was Donnie Hathaway (1945-1979) whose song "This Christmas" written in 1970 that set the standard for Christmas songs all over America during the holiday season. Unfortunately, this former church musician reportedly committed suicide in 1979 over his love and passion for a married woman and co-singer, Roberta Flack. According to the most accurate story, Hathaway threw himself out of the window in front of Flack to demonstrate his love. Not only was this stupid, it was certainly demonically inspired.

The Modern & Recent Resurgence Of Cross-Over

In this segment we wanted to look back at not only the historic trend of how gospel music and musicians have mixed themselves with the world and ultimately the devil, but also look at the impact that a few personalities have had on the modern secular and gospel music industries and ask the question, should gospel even be an industry?

As noted, there have been individuals who have left the gospel to pursue careers within the hip-hop music industry and the impact has certainly been made. however it would seem that the greatest impact upon the culture has come at the hands and perverted gifts of those who once claimed to be children of God.

From Evangelism To Sexual Perversion

In what seems like ancient history for many individuals now in their early to mid 30's, the group called Jodeci offered an appeal that was almost hypnotic to their fans. Combining the rifts and crooning of the streets with a gospel and heart felt tone of soul, the multi-platinum selling Jodeci swept many young people off their feet and ushered in a new era of R & B street and hip-hop combination music. This era (late 80's and early 90's) was known as the "New Jack Swing" era of street music and gave rise to many crossover artists seeking to expand their audience.
The first part of the quartet consisted of Cedric Hailey (K-Ci), 9/2/1969; Joel Hailey (JoJo) 6/10/1971; both brothers born in Charlotte, North Carolina; parents were gospel singers; that formed a group called Little Cedric and The Hailey Singers. Part 2 consisted of Dalvin DeGrate 7/23/1971 and Donald (DeVante Swing) DeGrate, Jr. 9/24/1969 were born in Hampton, VA. Their parents were Donald DeGrate, Sr. and Mary DeGrate and formed the group The DeGrate Delegation who made regular tours throught the country and especially the South. The Degrate Delegation had one of the first gospel music tracks to ever hit Billboard's top 10 dance charts. The song was "I Wanna Be Ready". Jodeci was discovered by rapper Heavy D and signed by Uptown records President, Andre Harrell.

Read more!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

When "Progress" Takes You To Hell

Lev. 18:22 ~ Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination

Lev. 20:13 ~ If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them

I Cor. 6:9 ~ Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

Romans 1:22-28 ~ 22- Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23- And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 24- Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25- Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. 26- For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: 27- And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. 28- And even as they did not like to retain God in [their] knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

Jude 7-8: 7- Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. 8- Likewise also these [filthy] dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.

Claiming The Anointing While Gay

The Vision Church in Atlanta, led by GAY apostle OC Allen put the HOT in the South...HOT because according to them (him) progress not only describes what some think a church using modern techniques and ministry within the community preaching and teaching the word of God are doing, but  progress describes the act of affirming gay, lesbian and transgender individuals and creating  and gay inclusive church with a Chief apostle who is also Gay himself right along with what is called a "First Gentleman" by his side. 

In a movement that can only be described as one awaiting the judgement of God, the church has now led to a completely new gay affirming organization called the United Progressive Pentecostal Church, which claims to restore the mode of biblical operation to the community and church by including all people races and gender orientations as a part of the body of the church and ultimately the Body Of Christ. In fact this is what their site says about their so called progress:

"In 2003, after over 20 years of preaching and urban ministry, he (apostle Allen III) sensed the call of God to create a place of refuge and empowerment for all people irrespective of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, class or background. This place would be called, The Vision Church. In the fall of 2004, Overseer OC Allen began to develop and train leaders to birth a refuge for ALL people. Since its inception, many are calling The Vision Church “one of the South’s fastest growing inclusive Churches” or “Atlanta’s new progressive Pentecostal movement”. The Vision Church of Atlanta has become a multiracial, welcoming and affirming, nondenominational Church, experiencing explosive growth since its inception"
In what has to be one of the most scripture violating associations that I've ever seen to be perpetrated and paraded in front of the people of God, as stated earlier I was further confounded to find that the pastor also has a wife. Yes a wife. Only not an ordinary wife. He is called the First Gentleman of the church (Rashad Burgess).  

Now get this...every Sunday men and women are led in worship by at least two mean who are openly gay, unmarried, according to not only the law of God but the law of man (As GA. does not legally marry gays...yet), and probably countless other women who are also gender confused lesbians, loving other women...What's more, all these gay, illegally united, scripturally condemned folk, are directing some straight individuals and children in worship and scriptural teaching and telling them that the anointing is residing upon them and is a confirmation that what they are doing is sent of God and acceptable to him. 

I REJECT this movement and all that it stands Jesus name! Not only is this ministry gender confused, but they are scripture and natural law breakers and their "progress" will obviously only lead them and them that follow directly to HELL!

Read more!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

We Are Crying For You Juanita II...What A Mess!

In one of the most strange interviews I've seen in recent times from a supposed leader of God's people, a version of Juanita Bynum calling herself (Juanita Bynum II) has emerged to to proclaim the resurgence of her ministry life and gospel music career with a production that she has deemed "The Diary Of Juanita Bynum, Soul Cry". The title of which she gained from her "leading" to tell about her journey over the last three years as her soul began to cry out to the Lord while on break in a recording studio.

The interview is filled with so much apostasy that it is almost unbelievable. It's very difficult for me to adhere to what some may consider to be "Christian Civility" as we have been discussing earlier. You'll see after watching the video in it's entirety at the bottom of the page, but for now, let me take the time to point out a few highlights:

Juanita's Death & Resurrection

Evidently Juanita considered that she died when here relationship with Bishop Thomas Weeks III fell apart.  This we do not criticize, but it is a sad shame to play with God. She recites her experience as follows:
"I really had a death experience in the transition that I walked through. It was the most devastating experience of my entire life, and the first Juanita Bynum in that sense did not survive, and all I had left, I said this to somebody earlier...You know when you are in pain when, there are no words, and the pain take you to letters...and my pain took me to the letter "O". I, I had nothing else to say, I, I din't know what to pray, I didn't know who to turn to, I didn't know where to hide, because my face and all of the issues were everywhere. And one day I was in a radio studio, getting ready to do some drops...and the lady had to step out for 30 minutes, and I just, laid my head down on the side of the counter, and I,I,I, grabbed myself like this, trying to hug myself. I was so numb 'till I couldn't feel my own skin and out of my mouth, while my face was layin' to the side, I just started singin'..."
As stated there will be judgement dispensed on behalf of Juanita. There is no excuse for spousal abuse. However, what we've already seen the judgement upon Juanita also for seeking to rise to the top, self exaltation and unrighteous living. God will always display his judgment upon individuals for taking advantage of the people of God. Juanita did that, made money off of the people and continues to do so today with shoddy prophecies.

"I Know What God Is Doing Now In The Earth Realm"

The second version of Juanita continues the first version's assumption and assertion that she is not an ordinary prophetess, but she is a prophetess that has a special insight from God:
"My prophetic anointing is dimensional. It is for the elements, it's for the times, it's like the scripture calls it, the spirit of Issachar. It's a, discerning the times and being able to speak in reference to what time God is  in at this particular moment. What is God doing now in the Earth realm as a whole."
A dimension prophetic anointing? What God is doing "now in the earth realm as a whole?"...Thius is called self-exaltation. She further states that she is not into prosperity prophesying: 
"I'm not into bikes, houses and cars..."
Is that so? That's good but from previous statements she is into $5,000 Pens!

The Message

Flattered by her new association with Beyonce's father, also known as  Matthew "The Baby Is Yours" Knowles, Juanita II claims that the Lord has raised her up to spread "the message" at the direction of a man supposedly full of wisdom:

"...when you join wisdom, with gift and talent and the anointing you have power. And I was honored that he immediately recognized the anointing on my life and the God on my life and his press is, "the world has got to hear this" and he didn't come trying to make me anything but who I already was..."
In fact it is this $20,750 per month child support paying man of wisdom that Juanita II has claimed will be the catalyst and progenitor of spreading "the message" around the world.
"his wisdom recognizes the anointing and the gift that I have, so now the two of us joined together will be messengers around the world."
Look at this picture...a man destroys his family, has a baby with an illicit lover, makes a confused "cash cow" out of his daughter and he is "a man full of wisdom"? He then further "teams up" with "the anointing" (whatever that can possibly be in this situation) and spreads "the message" around the earth??? What Message??? The message of sin, shame, adultery and bondage???

The Messengers Clothes Stay On At Least For Now

Well at least we're glad that she isn't slated to do too much of a stage show like Matthew's daughter and Juanita's predecessor Beyonce:

"I am training though to fly from cables, y'u-know all of that, but I'm not gettin' ready to drop it like it's hot and put strip my clothes off  or none of that."  
Please see the complete interview below:

What a COMPLETE mess!


Read more!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Christian Civility...With Gentleness & Respect?

1 Peter 3:15 ~"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and [be] ready always to [give] an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:"

The internet can be both a welcoming aid to discovery and also a discouraging and depressing tool of engagement. Recently, there has been much conversation regarding how Christians engage one another in the blogosphere...

Now, I must first admit, that emotions can sometimes hijack a good message and enter into the conversation all too easily causing a separation between individuals that were thought to be previously inseparable. I remember a debate between two ministers over then Presidential candidate Barack Obama that not only escalated into insults, but ended in at least one party throwing slurs, pronouncing judgement on the other, name calling and just flat out condemning anyone who had any affinity for Obama.  This was a reminder that we must be careful as to not engage in or approach commentary with an "all in" or "I'll prove it to you" type of mentality that often prevails in the blogosphere and among internet email systems.

Salvation At Stake

What we want to examine however is that there are skirmishes that often happen where individuals "claim" that their relationship in Christ was damaged as a result of internet chatter and dialogue between Christians. It stands to reason that if individuals can feel that they have been bullied and go on to commit suicide because of what is said on the internet, it is possible that some could have their faith, both in God and other Christians, severely challenged if they are not careful.

What I am afraid of however is that there are two messages and actions that recent discussion over this issue seems to lump together as one.

1- Disrespectful dialogue and debate over Christian truth or doctrine
2- Dialogue that exposes heresy, apostasy and failure among the church, church leaders and "gospel" personalities.

To my understanding, both of these topics are uniquely different and must be differentiated.

First, we can readily admit that Christians can sometimes show and face disrespect over doctrine, church, or theological belief. I have experienced that much early on in my blog/commentary career and have probably been both the cause and recipient of such treatment and interaction. For my part I certainly apologize to any of those who have been the recipient of such interaction. I soon learned however, that different persons are at different stages in life dealing with certain truths that challenge certain understandings or perceptions and it takes God ultimately to speak to the heart. One should keep in mind that not every issue is a matter of salvation or Christian fellowship. Some issues should not divide, although some inevitably do.

Read more!

Friday, July 2, 2010

California Planned Parenthood, Overbilling & Federal Funds

July 2, 2010

"(Washington, DC) – The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has ruled in favor of the American Center for Law and Justice’s (ACLJ) client in a multi-million dollar fraud case against Planned Parenthood (PP) affiliates in California. ACLJ attorneys are representing a former employee of the PP affiliate in Los Angeles, who is now a federal whistleblower. A federal district court in California had dismissed the case, but the Ninth Circuit’s ruling, dated yesterday, reinstates the lawsuit.

“This is a tremendous victory,” said Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of the ACLJ. “While this case is by no means over, winning this appeal means we have gotten the federal claim over the threshold hurdles and can now get down to the heart of this case: the alleged fraud.”

The federal False Claims Act (FCA) forbids government contractors from submitting “false or fraudulent” claims for payment. The FCA also authorizes private individuals to bring suit against the offenders to recover the fraudulently obtained funds.

The allegation in this case is that PP affiliates in California illegally marked up the supposed cost of various birth control drugs when seeking government reimbursement, resulting in tens of millions of dollars of overbilling – at taxpayer expense. State audits in both California and Washington State have found PP affiliates guilty of overbilling.

When a former PP staffer sued the PP affiliates in federal court, charging the defendants with having fraudulently overbilled the state and federal governments in the amount of tens of millions of dollars, a prominent law firm began representing the PP defendants in the case at no cost to the defendants. The PP attorneys asked the federal district court to dismiss the case on technical jurisdictional grounds.

The federal district court accepted their arguments in part, and dismissed the case. ACLJ attorneys then entered the case to handle the appeal.

“The question on appeal was whether the former PP employee is a proper whistleblower under the False Claims Act,” said Sekulow. “We contended that the answer is ‘Yes,’ and now a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit has unanimously agreed with us.”

The ACLJ’s opening brief had dissected and refuted the arguments of PP’s attorneys point by point, explaining why the court of appeals should reverse the lower court’s judgment and reinstate the lawsuit. You can read the ACLJ opening brief HERE.

ACLJ attorneys subsequently filed a reply brief and two supplemental briefs addressing intervening developments in the law.

Led by Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow, the American Center for Law and Justice focuses on constitutional law and is based in Washington, D.C."


Read more!