Thinking Out Loud

May 7, 2009

Newsboys Still Got It

newsboysFaced with five hours in the car today, I downloaded recent sermons by Rob Bell and Greg Boyd which I played once each, and the new album by The Newsboys, which I listened to at least three times, parts of it more than that.

In The Hands of God released on Tuesday in North America — I’m not sure how that compares with the U.K. and Aust. — though the title song has been on Christian radio for several weeks.

I’m the kind of person who likes to review an album with all the facts in front of me, as well as having completely studied the lyric booklet.   While that was not possible while driving, it also wasn’t possible when I got home because the typsetting is so miniscule that I don’t think even the kids to whom this album is targetted could read this without a magnifying glass.   This did however confirm the old adage that if you listen to rock music you’ll go blind.   I think that’s the adage…

So I really don’t know what the song RL 1984 is about, but I’m sure someone will inform me in the comments section.    That leaves me room for just a few observations.

  1. Michael Tait:   You’re gonna fit in really well in this band.   …For those who already know about this, note that it’s Peter Furler on the album; Michael took over after its recording.   But you can already hear a new direction in the band’s sound.
  2. It’s nice to hear great Christian music that isn’t modern worship or vertical worship; not that I have anything against worship.   These guys are the kings of Christian pop for good reason, and I appreciate them being who they are and what they and not trying to cave in to pressure to release what everyone else is doing.
  3. That said, “Glorious” and “Lead Me to the Cross” are worship songs, but to my ears, so is the title song.   I envision “In The Hands of God” with a soloist doing the verses and then the chorus projected onscreen for a congregation to join in.
  4. “The Upside” is much fun musically.   Reminds me of many of the best great pop anthems.
  5. I have no fifth point.

newsboys with PeterSo there you are.    Just for reading this far, here’s a bonus link to the title song on one of those homemade videos where they provide the lyrics superimposed over stock photos.   (The lyrics are appreciated to help focus on the song, but the pix are often crying to be removed from the web due to overuse.)   Truth-in-video purists can choose this link to a live version.   I’ll take the studio quality audio.

Link:  Exhaustive Newsboys bio and discography at Wikipedia

March 13, 2009

The Newsboys, Michael Tait, Oral Roberts, Bill Hybels, The Pollen Index and the Coming Evangelical Collapse

They Don’t Do Weather Forecasting Like This Where We Live

Barbeque
Index
Details

Arthritis
Index
Details
Cold
Index
Details
Lawn
Index
Details
UV
Index
Details
Flu
Index
Details
Frizz
Index
Details

Pollen
Index
Details
Asthma
Index
Details

But then again, maybe they should.  How useful would these three factors be to your situation?

And the Commencement Speaker At Oral Roberts University This Year Is…
…(wait for it)…BILL HYBELS!   Yes, that Bill Hybels.   ORU continues to try to rebrand itself as a little less charismatic will Willow Creek founder Hybels as this year’s speaker.   You can read more here.

Michael Tait as a Newsboy?
It’s official.  The man we’ve come to identify with DCTalk is officially replacing Peter Furler with the Newsboys.    Furler leaves the band after 22 years but will make several guest appearances with the band throughout the coming year.  You can read that story here.
The Coming Evangelical Collapse

There’s been a lot of talk this week about Michael Spencer (aka Internet Monk) and the article he wrote for The Christian Science Monitor.   I especially appreciated these comments, blended from his second and sixth points:

Ironically, the billions of dollars we’ve spent on youth ministers, Christian music, publishing, and media has produced a culture of young Christians who know next to nothing about their own faith except how they feel about it. Our young people have deep beliefs about the culture war, but do not know why they should obey scripture, the essentials of theology, or the experience of spiritual discipline and community. Coming generations of Christians are going to be monumentally ignorant and unprepared for culture-wide pressures.

Even in areas where Evangelicals imagine themselves strong (like the Bible Belt), we will find a great inability to pass on to our children a vital evangelical confidence in the Bible and the importance of the faith.

You can read that article here.   Or if you have time, link to all the original articles in Michael’s blog.

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