NashVegas – which is it?

I’ve questioned whether or not I should post this, but here it goes! I’m taking yesterday’s post (friend Mitch and his sweet design studio “Studio NashVegas“), and a conversation I had with a friend today as signs that now is fine! In case you are confused with the title, I’m hoping this helps….

This weekend Larry King invited Jennifer Knapp, award-winning Christian musician who is now a professing homosexual, into an interview. You can browse all over YouTube and check out the interview videos. I’m not writing this to bash Jennifer. She’s had enough of that. I am standing up for the fact that God’s Word is clear and a life lived in following Christ is a life of repentance (privately or publicly – it doesn’t matter how or where). From the interview (and many other articles), it’s obvious she’s not repenting.

She goes on to say that those who believe that homosexuality is a sin have wrongly interpreted “Greek” scripture. Sorry Jennifer, but homosexuality doesn’t stop short of the Greek text (Sodom and Gomorrah, etc. – Hebrew). His standard against the sin of homosexuality continues throughout the New Testament (“Greek” text). In case you’re questioning that, you can read at least one obvious instance in Romans 1:24-27.

I write this because I care deeply for the church (the Monday – Saturday church outside four walls). A church (me included) that sins every day. But a church that stands firm on repentance being just as much a part of life as love is. Obviously the people that are standing up for God’s Word love Jennifer. If they didn’t love her (like I do), they wouldn’t take the time to pray, write blogs, send her emails, direct messages via Twitter, etc. Why wouldn’t they just give up on her? Really?

And obviously, by the title of this blog post, I believe the cross is being shared with less and less confidence. God’s Word is being faded out by much of Christian music, often replaced with politically correct ideas to gain sales. Just some, not all of “Christian music” (to be clear). I won’t get into how liberalism seems to be predominant in the same circles. Nashville struggles with becoming like Las Vegas. The problem? Whatever happens in Las Vegas really doesn’t stay there. It’s time we gave up on that idea. Pray for me and for yourself, just as much (if not more) than Jennifer. That we won’t stray from being people that repent for our actions. It’s not perfection that is required, it’s that we acknowledge the work of the cross and why that was even necessary.

  1. I understand what you’re saying man! Main stream “christianity” isn’t quite what it should be… (I mean do i have to say look at joel osteen) but in Nashville there are some great Musicians that are writing music that is not only amazingly well written but also very God Centered. Some of the musicians that I’m excited about are like Andrew Peterson, Andy Gullahorn, Andrew Osenga, Randall Goodgame, Matthew Smith, Matthrew Perryman Jones, and the list continues… groups like Indelible grace, Caedmons Call is also amazing.. ( most of these artist are a part of “The Square Peg Alliance” basically because they don’t fit into the mold of the industry.)

    I’m not trying to deny what you’re talking about but show you that although its not necessarily too popular (ha) the gospel is still in Nashville…

    But to be honest this issue with Knapp doesn’t surprise me… If you don’t fit into what the american church expect they reject you.. well this issue could go for days but we do need to pray for Knapp and be open with her…

  2. Thanks for posting, Gabe. I, too, am deeply interested in the redemption of a church that sins every day. A church based on wholehearted devotion to Jesus, full of both grace and truth.

  3. Tom aka Dadooz

    Thanks for the clear expression of God’s truth here, Gabe. Repentance is the word that I have been waiting to hear in this discussion. Like many, I love the expressions of devotion and pleas for compassion that JK’s music have presented. I am so sad to now know the sin that wrenched them from her, and sadder that she, like too many, has been confused by the enemy to think that Jesus would not say to them, “Go and sin no more”.

    As I struggle daily to privately repent from my sin, I wonder at the bold contradictions of these that proudly proclaim their allegiance to Christ alongside their commitment to their lifestyle that denies Him. I know some who, apart from the bold profession of their gayness, I consider devout Christians- my heart grieves for them, and I beg Christ and the Father to reveal the Truth to them and cast them from the shadow of deception they are under.

    Another struggle for me in this is the oft used, too quaint expression, “love the sinner, hate the sin”; for I believe we are clearly taught to “put away” the unrepentant sinner- and I have a hard time doing that when I see them seeking Christ in every area of their life but the one that is, to me, so obviously denying Him.

    Thanks, again, Gabe.

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  5. dewd4jesus

    LOL! Having spent nearly five years in NashVegas myself I can tell you that I can attest to many similarities. But then many cities have their elements of Vegas they’ve incorporated. As you said, what goes on in Vegas doesn’t just stay there. But largely the problem is that most of the “Christian” labels are owned by the big worldly labels now. So of course the world’s standards and views get mixed in. But why does this surprise us? Jesus in fact told us it would be so. That “The Kingdom” would be corrupted while here on this earth. That the enemy would creep in. That his agents would come in to distract and divide. That the whole lump would be leavened. That there would be tares mixed in with the wheat. And in that parable I think He gives us the answer, to leave the tares in place. To do otherwise would in fact accomplish the enemy’s goal by uprooting and damaging wheat.

    But, “we’re at war!” You might say. True. But I think we forget who we’re warring against. We want to make people the enemy. But I’d caution you there. If you condemn another by the standard of God’s Law, you condemn yourself, for “with what measure you judge, you shall be judged.” (Matt 7) The standard is no longer The Law but Christ. It’s the souls of people that we are fighting for. God desires a restored relationship with all people and did His part in reconciling all of mankind to Himself through His Son Jesus. That’s our job. To tell them the good news. To overcome evil with good. To be vessels of grace and truth in love. It is NOT our job to convict of sin. That responsibility goes solely to the Holy Spirit. When we look at people we need to have the same view as the Father. We need to see only the blood of Christ that covers them. That is what He sees when He looks on us. And He accepted the sacrifice, so who are we to say differently?

    There is no doubt that the Word is clear with regard to homosexuality. But it is not some “special” sin. It is sin. As is lying, stealing, coveting, ……..and oh yeah, the one second on Jesus’ list of the most important, which He said was essentially the same as the first(the result of), it’s a sin to not show any human being you come in contact with the same grace and mercy in love you want to be shown. “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”

    It is my prayer that Jennifer will see the error in her view of homosexuality. It’s okay to have the nature within. It’s not okay to condone or adopt it as a lifestyle. I may have a proclivity to violent anger and murder, or lying, stealing, name the sin….but that doesn’t make it okay to just accept that that is just how I am. That person was crucified with Christ and I’ve been made a new creation. And while the remnants of that nature still reside in my flesh, my flesh is bound for destruction and I am to deny it any place in my life. That is at the very least, what my desire is supposed to be. That is repentance. A change of heart. So that’s my prayer for Jennifer. That she would allow herself to be examined by the Lord and repent. And should be the prayer of all who call on His Name.

  6. Wow, dewd4jesus – your response was pretty powerful. I couldn’t agree more that sometimes showing love also means that we realize that someone is a sinner, take it to the Lord (continually), but give up on pushing the issue.

    Most individuals that know what is truth and what is a lie aren’t going to “feel loved” if we just chat / hang out with them. They’re simply running away from the Lord, and He is the only one that will bring them back to Himself.

    I know when I have felt like I was alone the most, those were the times when I realized how much I really am in need of God’s love. Jennifer might be able to hide that for a bit (while getting the attention of the media for a few weeks), but God is at work deep in her soul as He has been in the souls of the rest of us.

    Thanks for the comment!

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