This past weekend the sermon text was Psalm 20. It was a prayer before battle. It was a prayer for victory from the hand of Yahweh. It was a heavy-metal prayer.
Now, I like nearly every genre of music you can think of: opera, classical, folk, alternative, bluegrass, jazz, electronic, techno, hip-hop, rock, pop, gospel, blues, and on and on and on. They each have their place.
But this past week's sermon where King David prophesies that the people of God will "Rise and stand firm" in the name of Yahweh . . . that was just a heavy metal sort of song to me.
So, in the interest of full disclosure, all last week I had the soundtrack of The Dark Knight Rises (get it?), music from the Christian heavy metal groups Becoming the Archetype and The Showdown running through my stereo! (Pray for the church secretary.)
This song in particular would not leave my thoughts:
Some well-meaning folks would say that I should have played this song at some point around the sermon . . . because, after all, it moves and inspires me. But I wouldn't. No way. No how.
There's nothing wrong with the song. There's nothing inherently wrong with heavy metal. But I was called to pastor the church . . . not try and conform it to my tastes and preferences. I was called to disciple the church which means, in whatever context, I need to adapt my leadership to effectively lead the congregation to a deeper walk with the Lord Jesus Christ. And that has nothing to do with my own tastes.
I'm not interested in having a church filled with sci-fi geeks, book lovers, Shakespeare reading, blog-obsessed, heavy metal listening people.
I'm interested in making disciples of Jesus Christ.
So, whether anyone knew it or not*, this past Sunday's message was a heavy metal sermon.
You can hear it (sans-screaming) here.
*My wife knew. And you can pray for her too!