Home / Entertainment / Music: Do the Lyrics Matter?

Music: Do the Lyrics Matter?

Music is a powerful thing. It can turn the cowardly into the courageous in the form of a battle hymn or it can emotionally cripple us. Today, I want to go on a little musical journey with you and test whether lyrics matter in music and I’m going to measure it with scripture. The question I’m going to ask is, “What is Heaven?” Then I’m going to look at four popular songs and see if they paint an accurate picture of this wonderful place.

Heaven Song by Phil Wickham

Chorus

I want to run on greener pastures
I want to dance on higher hills
I want to drink from sweeter waters
In the misty morning chill
And my soul is getting restless
For the place where I belong
I can’t wait to join the angels and sing my heaven song

Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door by Guns ‘n Roses

Mama take this badge from me
I can’t use it anymore
It’s gettin’ dark, too dark to see
Feels like I’m knockin’ on Heaven’s door

There Will Be A Day by Jeremy Camp

Chorus

There will be a day with no more tears
No more pain, and no more fears
There will be a day when the burdens of this place
Will be no more, we’ll see Jesus face to face

Heaven by Bryan Adams

Chorus

And baby you’re all that I want
When you’re lyin’ here in my arms
I’m findin’ it hard to believe
We’re in heaven
And love is all that I need
And I found it there in your heart
It isn’t too hard to see
We’re in heaven

Results

I have to say that Phil Wickham got it right. We know that there are many angels in heaven (2 Thess 1:7) and that heaven is a place we will find rest (Rev 14:13).

Unfortunately, GNR missed the mark. They perceived heaven as death. Sure, some go to heaven when we die, but the way the group is referring to it is as a miserable end.

Onward to Jeremy Camp. He is certainly one of my favorite musical artist and I think he captured the essence of heaven very well. No more pain or fear and we’ll see Jesus face-to-face (Rev 21:4)

Finally we have Bryan Adams view of what heaven, and he believes it to be some form of bliss with his significant other. Although it sounds nice, it’s not accurate.

Friends, it’s easy to identify which two musicians are labeled as Christians and which ones aren’t. We can obviously pick them out. Because of this, I would suggest that lyrics do matter and they can separate us from the rest of the world as they did in this little exercise.

In closing, I just want to say that it is important to make a joyful noise on to the Lord (Psalm 98:4) and that includes the songs we sing. I would like to encourage you to take some time to focus on the lyrics of some of the music you’re listening to and see if it’s delivering a good and accurate message. I’m not here to judge you; I’m just making a suggestion. Thank you for reading and God bless.

What are some songs you’ve heard lately that paint an inaccurate picture of God or His Creation?

About Joel Bauer

Joel Bauer
Joel M. Bauer is a 45-year-old U.S. Army Veteran from Dunn, NC, which is just outside of Raleigh. After being honorably discharged from the U.S. Army, he attended school at Taylor University, a Christian liberal arts school, in Fort Wayne, IN, where he received his BS in social work and psychology. He has worked in such places as a homeless shelter, a community based treatment center for severe mental illnesses, a school for troubled students, and other social service agencies. His current endeavor is to build The Bottom Line website into a site that inspires both Christians and non-Christians alike, and brings glory to God.

Check Also

Forgetting the Lies that Devour Us

All of us make mistakes. It never had to be, but it is a guarantee. ...

7 comments

  1. John Clark

    We have plenty of worship choruses. The traditiional hymns, though, have a lot of Bible doctrine, and some church groups have gotten away from singing hymns. This can result in worship and emotion without sound teaching. Also a lack of Bible knowledge will result in inaccurate lyrics.

    • Joel

      Agreed. I think a lot of times people are into what “feels” good instead of what is actually good for them. Thanks for the response. God bless.

  2. Lisa

    Great point, Joel. I like a mix of music, but you are so right that lyrics matter. We should pay attention to what we hear!

  3. Avatar

    I somewhat agree with Joel here. Lyrics can matter depending on the person. Some people are very susceptible to outside influences and have not been taught right from wrong or moral values, which makes deciphering lyrics a tad hard.

    On the other side of that though, older people, like Joel or myself, have been taught morals and the music they listen to greatly reflects that. For the most part.

    I can’t speak for Joel, but when I was a younger man, a lot of the music I wanted to listen to, I couldn’t because my parents did not let me due to what the lyrics said. For me though, it wasn’t the lyrics that mattered. It was the melody.

    Take Def Leppards: Pour Some Sugar on Me. No idea what the the lyrics were and bascially still don’t unless I look them up. Just liked the music.

    I think that is what a lot of people care about, the melody. Really isn’t about the lyrics in my opinion.

    Below are three songs that I love even though the lyrics are, well, less than inspiring so to say: (not going to post the vids cause Joel might shoot me)

    Ugly Kid Joe: GD devil. Very easily the worst of the three in terms of lyrics (probably). GD is something I rarely utter and when I do, I am sorry for it instantly. However, I loooove the song. Has nothing to do with the lyrics, just like it.

    A Perfect Circle: Judith. For years I have loved this song and then my brother told me what he thought the lyrics meant. I did not listen to it for a while, but then realized, it is not the lyrics that made me like the song, it was just the song. Before that, the lyrics were basically nothing.

    Hozier: Take Me to Church. This one is really recent and I loove it. Not sure why, but there is something about it that just makes me want to listen to it all the time. Looked up the lyrics just to check what it was, well everyone has their own interpretation of them.

    I don’t really care about any of the lyrics! Honestly. They have no bearing on me whatsoever. I like the song because it just appeals to me. It makes me happy or sad. It invokes a different time. It makes me hyper.

    Basically it is the song that inspires feeling in me. Not the lyrics. I would bet that most people are the same way.

    Take the lyrics out of your favorite song and I’m betting you will know what it is. Since that is the case, if you have an issue with lyrics of some songs, change them!

    😀

  4. Joel

    Mr Nxs,

    Thanks so much for sharing your views on music and lyrics. However, the Holy Bible does warn us of taking His name in vain and cursing. In fact, we are told to make a joyful noise on to the Lord. My dear friend, how is listening to those particular songs making a joyful noise on to the Lord? If it doesn’t jive with scripture, then maybe it’s something that needs to be reconsidered. Also, if music is making you sad, as you mentioned, then that should be another concern. God doesn’t want us to be sad. In fact, one of the fruit of the Spirit is joy. This is what I get from the music I listen to. Not depressing thoughts or cursing. Anyway, we are each responsible for the choices we make, but I would encourage anyone reading this to make a choice to is pleasing to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Not just what might feel good. Thanks so much for sharing you views Nxs. God bless.

  5. Avatar

    Oh, I get it. Taking the Lords name in vain is a terrible thing. Again, it is rare that I ever utter those words. I just like that song. Has nothing to do with the lyrics and as a matter of fact, I change the lyrics when I hear it. 😀

    The sad songs are of no concern. lol. Why? Tis because the sad songs I am talking about are usually ones like Peter Cetera: Daddies Little Girl or Meatloaf’s: I’d Do Anything for Love because it is the wife and I song. And whilst those do make me sad, tis a good kind of sad.

    Music affects everyone differently. As does lyrics. As long as I like the song, lyrics don’t mean squat!

    😀

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *