The problem with drawing lines in the sand is that with a breath of air they disappear.
I remember driving around Kansas City with some friends while in college when I was first encountered this question that had plagued me for the entirety of my Christian life, “what is the difference between Christian and secular music?” You see on my radio I was listening to “secular” music and my friend was becoming continually and visibly agitated with it. When he asked me to change it, the question was raised by another friend. Although it seemed an initially obvious answer, I did not immediately know that answer. Actually, the more I thought about it the more I realized I am not sure. Was it that a Christian song had to mention Jesus or God? If that is true then what do we do with the books of Esther and Song of Songs (which do not mention either)?
Unfortunately, this is a dilemma that is not unique to the sphere of music. We live in a world where the divide between Secular and Sacred is constantly and adamantly being drawn by both Christians and non-Christians alike. We are frequently labeling things “Christian” that I suppose we fear otherwise might be confused for something else.
- Christian schools
- Christian groups
- Christian movies
- Christian books
- Christian bands, etc.
If our music, our schools, our groups, our books, our actions do not point those around us to Jesus, and serve to redeem a broken world, then are they not indeed unchristian? Instead of creating clear bright line, like we would like, Christ blurred the lines between secular and sacred, seemingly implying that the division the ritualistic religion of the day had crested a false division. If All things are God’s, all things are in fact sacred? IS this going to o far? Why? Furthermore, He was criticized for almost everything he did because he acted as if things such as the purity and impurity, pious and impious, Jew and Gentile, powerful and weak, rich and poor did not exist as the world saw them. When Paul came on the scene he preached this as he proclaimed in Romans there is no division, but “all are one in Christ Jesus.”
Is it easier to know who is in or out? Is it that we wanted to be able to sit at the table with drunkards tax collectors and sinners, as long as we knew who was who? Honestly , I’m not really sure, so I put the question to you, is there a Sacred/ Secular divide?