American Idol

Apparently, there is some drama over the fact that the word “Jesus” was edited out of the American Idol performance of “Shout To The Lord” last week.  Now, I loathe secular editing more than 99% of Christians on the planet, which is to say that I’m a total, unapologetic bitch about it.  But you know what?  I watched that show live, and I don’t remember the last time I was so moved by a performance. 

All I could think was, Here is a blatantly secular show, devoted to the most secular type of goal: fame and fortune via pop songs.  Yet, during this one night (which, by the way, raised a bazillion dollars for poor, suffering people), they perform Shout to the Lord, dressed in white. 

Maybe I give the average viewer too much credit, but I’m sorry: Shout To the Lord is an explicitly Christian song, and the AI kids sang it with as much heart and feeling as you could ever find in any church.  Under these particular circumstances, I don’t give a rat’s patoot that they left out the word “Jesus,” which, in that song, occurs only once (as the very first word).  There is no other religion on earth that Shout to the Lord could possibly apply to, other than Christianity.

As a crotchety, anti-government, can’t-wait-to-get-to-heaven-and-off-this-fucked-up-planet Christian, I have been moved to tears every one of the 20 or so times I have watched the fame-hungry, hopeful pop stars of American Idol give props to Jesus with this performance.

Every knee shall bow, every tongue will confess.  If we’re seeing this on American Idol, not only is not everything lost: NOTHING is lost. 

Well, just watch it and decide for yourself:

~ by lewdandlascivious on April 13, 2008.

5 Responses to “American Idol”

  1. Strange, we watched the show that night and the name Jesus was not edited out of it. Maybe they only did that for the heathens on the East Coast? 😉

  2. Actually, there was such an immediate protest at the editing that they aired the “Jesus” version for later broadcasts—the “Jesus” version had them in casual clothes, the edited version had ’em in all white suits and dresses.

  3. Editing out “Jesus”? That’s just kooky. What if they edited out the word “Mohammad” in an islamic song? I just think it’s silly and insensitive. Who are they trying to avoid offending, the Christians or the non-Christians? Because as a Christian I do personally find it a bit offensive. They’re using the sentimental idea of people dressed in white singing gospel music purely for the emotional sentiment, while making sure the essence behind the genre and idea is expurgated, pimping the performance’s sentimental value for their own ratings. Well, that’s my first impression anyway.

    On the other hand if I was a secular audience member I think I’d just see it as PCness gone insane. I think I’d also find it offensive to my intelligence.

    It’s late and I’m feeling cynical. I can see where you’re coming from with Christian music making it’s way into mainstream media, Christianity finding it’s place in modern society, but my view is that without Jesus, what is Christianity? Christians deserve to be treated the same as members of any other religion.

    (Just my 2c, hope you don’t mind me commenting. I’m kind of scared of your sword :P)

  4. Don’t be scurred, kiwian! You’re not gonna get cut. 🙂
    I agree with everything you said—but what I think got to me was that when I was watching the AI kids sing the song, in a show that is completely about grabbing for fame and money, I really really felt that they were praising God. And maybe I’m wrong and they weren’t, but it just felt that way. It was just kind of cool to see talented people do what their talents were meant to do–glorify God and Christ. It was almost like they couldn’t help but do that.
    And again–I could completely be reading my own faith into that. But there was something sincere and open about the performance that just really touched me, and did not seem cynical. I didn’t sense for one second that the song was a cynical nod to the Bible Belt. I’m interested in hearing other thoughts on it—except, of course, for sarcastic rhetorical drive-by jabs from Christian-haters (I’ve declined to approve several of those).

  5. I could have swore I heard them say “Jesus.”

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