Top Scriptural Reasons Against Christian Rock - ANSWERED!

Argument: Christian rock music is "profane fire" on the altar of the Lord.

First Scripture

Then Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it, put incense on it, and offered profane fire before the LORD, which He had not commanded them. {2} So fire went out from the LORD and devoured them, and they died before the LORD. {3} And Moses said to Aaron, This is what the LORD spoke, saying: 'By those who come near Me I must be regarded as holy; And before all the people I must be glorified.'So Aaron held his peace. (Lev 10:1-3 NKJV)

Lets examine this incident more closely. The sons of Aaron - who was the pre-eminant priest of Egypt after the Exodus - killed for burning incense to Lord on His altar? That sounds a bit severe, doesn't it? That should be your first clue that this passage demands much closer examination.

God spelled out instructions for His worship at the temple in great detail. The sons of Aaron were attempting to perform a grain offering. Here are the instructions for the grain offering:

When someone brings a grain offering to the LORD, his offering is to be of fine flour. He is to pour oil on it, put incense on it and take it to Aaron's sons the priests. The priest shall take a handful of the fine flour and oil, together with all the incense, and burn this as a memorial portion on the altar, an offering made by fire, an aroma pleasing to the LORD. --- Leviticus 2:1-2

OK, that sounds pretty simple, doesn't it? Now - contrast that to what sons of Aaron did. They forgot two things. They forgot the "fine flour" and the "oil". They just burned incense. We need to look up all three elements to see what they mean.

Fine flour
I hope this is obvious to you. Jesus is referred to as the "bread of life". Unleaved bread "saved" the Hebrew slaves from God's wrath against the firstborn of Egypt during the first Passover. Jesus used the same feast to initiate "the Lord's supper" - using the bread to represent his body. The fine flour represents Jesus.
Oil (Heb. shemen)
Men were anointed as an official inauguration into high office. Priests (Exod. 28:41; 29:7), prophets, and kings (I Kings 19:15,16) were anointed and were called "messiahs" i.e., "anointed ones" (Lev. 4: 3,5,16; I Sam. 2:10; I Chron. 16:22). Oil is used also as a symbol for the Holy Spirit. Our Lord's Messiahship was not bestowed with the use of literal oil, but was evidenced when the Holy Spirit came down upon Him in the form of a dove at His baptism (Luke 3:22, etc.) - from the Zondervan Bible dictionary
The KJV translation of two Hebrew words which were distinct in meaning at first, although later the second came to have virtually the same meaning. One word, "incense", referred to the aromatic substance used by all religions, not just the Hebrews. The second word "frankincense" is one of the gifts given to the infant Jesus by the 3 wise men (Mt 2:11). - portions from the Zondervan Bible dictionary

By now, you ought to be able to figure out why the Lord was angry. It is not the literal grain and oil - it was what they represented: specifically the person of Jesus Christ - as prophecied by the elements of grain and oil. The sons of Aaron were unknowingly performing the one unpardonable sin - excluding Jesus Christ from the redemptive process. Attempting to come with only incense - like all the pagan nations did as well - was the same thing as attempting to come to God without Jesus Christ. This leads inevitably to damnation, as no man comes to the Father except through the Son. The sons of Aaron died because their offering represented their own efforts apart from the instructions of God and therefore, salvation without Jesus Christ, the Bread of Life, and the oil of the Holy Spirit. THAT was the "strange fire" - NOT Christian rock music. To equate the strange fire with Christian rock music completely loses the richness of the lesson this passage teaches us.

Next Scripture

They (the priests) have put no difference between the holy and profane, neither have they showed a difference between the unclean and the clean. Ezekiel 22:29

The critic who quoted this scripture put the wrong verse on the reference. It is actually verse 26. Ezekiel is prophecying against Israel, and gives a long list of things that are "holy" and are "profane", so there should be no misunderstanding about what is "profane". Music of any sort is not on the list:

Profane Things in Ezekiel 22
  • detestable practices (v2)
  • shedding blood in her midst (v3)
  • making idols (v3)
  • princes use power to shed blood (v6)
  • treated father and mother with contempt(v7)
  • oppressed the alien (v7)
  • mistreated the fatherless and the widow (v7)
  • despised my holy things (v8)
  • desecrated my Sabbaths (v8)
  • slanderous men bent on shedding blood (v9)
  • eat at the mountain shrines (v9)
  • commit lewd acts (v9)
  • dishonor their fathers' bed (v10)
  • violate women during their period (v10)
  • detestable offense with his neighbor's wife (v11)
  • shamefully defiles his daughter-in-law (v11)
  • violates his sister, his own father's daughter (v11)
  • accept bribes to shed blood (v12)
  • take usury and excessive interest (v12)
  • make unjust gain from your neighbors by extortion (v12)
  • conspiracy of her princes to:
    • devour people (v25)
    • take treasures and precious things (v25)
    • make many widows (v25)
  • priests who:
    • do violence to my law (v26)
    • profane my holy things (v26)
    • do not distinguish between the holy and the common (v26)
    • teach that there is no difference between the unclean and the clean (v26)
    • shut their eyes to the keeping of my Sabbaths (v26)
  • officials they shed blood and kill people to make unjust gain (v27)
  • prophets whitewash these deeds for them by false visions and lying divinations (v28)
  • people of the land:
    • practice extortion (v29)
    • commit robbery (v29)
    • oppress the poor and needy (v29)
    • mistreat the alien, denying them justice (v29)

Now - that is pretty clear to me. I just do not see music on the list. So why do the critics insist on putting it there? They are irrevocably convinced that Christian rock is "profane" and their church music is "holy". Yet everything else in this passage is talking about a direct violation of one the ten commandments. Plain and simple. Where is the 11th commandment "thou shalt only listen to Dial-The-Truth approved music"? I would sure like to know where it is, because I can't find it.

When this passage talks about despising and profaning holy things in verses 8 and 26, it is talking the sanctuary and instruments used for worship.

When it talks about unclean and clean in verse 26, these terms are used to describe people. "Unclean" people are people with diseases, and women on their period. Verse 10 even talks about this explicitly: "women during their period, when they are ceremonially unclean". So this, too, cannot apply to music.

The thing that bothers me about the critics trying to use this passage against Christian rock music is that they KNOW what I just told you. Anybody who has seen the movie "Ben Hur" knows what "unclean" means. A rudimentary study of the temple in Junior High Sunday School includes a description of the "Holy Things" used in the temple. So WHY do the critics try to deceive us into thinking this means Christian rock music? That is dishonest at its best, and deceptive and manipualtive at its worst.

Next Scripture

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the UNCLEAN thing; and I will receive you, 2 Cor. 6:17

I have actually covered this scripture elsewhere - as it relates to being separate from the world. I won't repeat that material here, because here the critics are only using it in the sense of "uncleanness". I looked up the Hebrew meaning, and here again it is referring primarily to being ceremonially unclean as in having a disease or a woman's menstual period. This IS a different word, however, and it has a broader meaning that can extend to things of the devil. Therefore, if the critics believe that Christian rock music is satanic, then this is a logical extension for them. But we know that Christian rock music is not satanic, so it is not an "unclean thing".

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