There has been talk around the theoblogosphere about creating a new meme. I have an idea: In your opinion, theologically, what is the worst song, ever? And why?
Now I elect to stay away from songs of worship like hymns or modern day worship songs, mainly because I’m not interested age-old debates like Calvinism vs. Arminianism. Actually this is really an excuse to talk about one of my least favorite song. Ever. However, everyone else, feel free to name your own least favorite, and then a song to replace it.
My father came into town this last Friday and we went to see the Yankees get beat by the Mets up at Yankee stadium (much to the disappointment of my father), even with Clements pitching. During the seventh inning stretch, the people in-charge played the ever so popular “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” song over the speakers, but then a second song, one that churns up a deeply-rooted negative emotions inside of me, was played – “God, bless America.” Now of course this reaction stems from the critique about the nation-state, yoking church with violence, nationality vs. ecclesiology, blah blah blah. Same old stuff really. Good stuff, but not particularly new stuff if you know me or have read this blog much. My single greatest objection to the song is to the idea of a divinely sanction modern nation-state. So how about God blesses all people? That sounds like something God really does like to do. Since when were we ever so good to be divinely sanctioned, or even actually graciously blessed above all the other nations? Stupid false myths. We’re “blessed” because we have taken from the poor and killed many others for our “freedom” and “liberty” – our riches are blood money.
Anyways, I do have a song to suggest, and a song that in fact proceeded “God, Bless America” by five minutes at Yankee stadium – “You Shook Me All Night Long.” Yep, you read it right. It was only a couple months ago that I first really paid attention to the lyrics. Good lord it was nearly scandalous. Funny enough though, and perhaps not all that surprising, I can find a theological parallel – “Song of Songs.” Honestly, the only reason we do not blush the hues of the sun when we read that book in the Bible is because we don’t understand really what “his banner over me is love” really means. Yes, next time at church, when people up on stage sing that song, you can see how much we misunderstand the text. So “his banner” means God’s protection for us? Right…. See what happens when the church acts repressive? We miss the erotic power, we cleave off parts of our humanity – vitality and zest (the spices of life if you will), and get that god awful “Christian dating/courtship” subculture.
I “create” the podcasts here at Union now. I say this because soon I’ll be posting up a podcast that should help open one’s eyes to spices in the Bible.