April 2008

Recently the Christian worship song "Shout to the Lord" was performed twice on the popular TV show American Idol. The first time the lyrics were changed to remove Jesus' name for the song, while the second time the song was performed as it was originally written. See the performance below:

I do not usually watch the show, but other blogs suggest that the majority of the eight finalists are not Christians, although there have been many overtly Christian participants in the past (including winners Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino, Carrie Underwood, and Jordin Sparks).

What do you think about performing Christian songs on a secular TV show? Was the move to perform the song (censored and/or uncensored) by the show's producers appropriate? There seems to be something at least a little ironic about performing a worship song on a show dedicated to making an "idol" out of someone …

(Thanks to Think Christian for their original posts on this topic here and here.)

Are there ways in which God is like us?
Yes. God loves, hates, plans, creates, thinks, builds, achieves, expresses Himself, takes pleasure in beauty and diversity, is disgusted by cruelty and evil.
God communicates.
God enters into relationships. (Source: Pastor Steve's Beliefs)

ThinkingIn a sense, the author is correct. God, according to the Bible, is and does all of those things. But I think the author is a bit sloppy: He has the direction backwards.

No, God is not like us. We are like God. Not in the New Age sense of being gods or even "god-like", but instead being made in God's image so we reflect a portion (albeit sometimes a tiny portion) of His glory. If we were to say that God is like us, we would be anthropomorphizing God, making Him like us. We should try to think in the right direction (top-down rather than bottom-up) regarding God.

For example, when we refer to God as "Father" we have a tenancy to apply our conceptions of our own father to God … which of course is quite backwards. To use Platonic terms (hopefully correctly) God is the Form, and our fathers are the forms. Or to put it another way, God is the mold, and our own fathers (as wonderful or as miserable as they may be) are the clay, which imperfectly represent facets of the original.

Of course, such similarities of God are marred (but not erased) by sin, which causes us to feel separated but not entirely estranged from our heavenly Father.

Related: How does sin estrange us from God? And what is God's answer to the problem?