I don't like Christian radio much. Yes, I write and sing "Christian" music and yes, I do get airplay on the radio. And at the risk of sounding like I'm biting the hand that feeds me, I feel this needs to be said. Besides, my music does not pander to radio playlists and therefore, I won't censor my words.
I feel that the theology of much of the music on "Christian" radio has deep problems. (Now I used the term "Christian" radio with its common usage, although I've got issues with the label "Christian" as an adjective). As I drove to the gym tonight, a song came on a popular radio station about Hell. The song was happy and joyful, and a playful reminder of the conditions of Hell. The implied message, from what I understand, is to get people to become Christians by joking about Hell.
Now, I don't believe that Hell is the central message of the gospel, discipleship is. And discipleship is chosen as a vocation, not forced upon anyone through fear or other means. But that isn't really my problem here, that's a debate for another post. My issue is the joking about it, the playful nature of the issue of salvation. The song was a popular one, by a very popular band who've done world tours many times over.
My question is: Why? Why is this the message that Christians are broadcasting over their airwaves. I try to be honest in my music, and I appreciate honesty in the music and artists that I listen to. And I believe it is honesty that the larger world needs and desires, not happy music about serious issues and doctrines.
Maybe I'm just griping. Maybe I'm just complaining. But since I'm not on the sidelines, but instead in the game, playing, I feel that my concerns are valid. The theology and approach behind the music played on Christian radio is not always beneficial to the Kingdom and I think that we should be more aware about what message we are putting out there, and more imporantly why we are putting that message out there.