By Randall Stephens
"We Are the World," "Hands Across America," "Do They Know It's Christmas?" We remember the songs. We recall the big-haired celebrities with bolo ties passing the baton from one line to another. So much sincerity. So much feeling.
But, does anyone remember this forgettable Christian tune that followed the trend? What's going on here? That's what I kept thinking as I watched this three time in a row. (Don't know why. It draws me in, vortex-like. Forgive "the worst" bit embedded on the screen.)
As I grew up listening to Christian music I was very aware that most God rock bands were meant to sound like their secular counterparts. Think Phil Keaggy=Paul McCartney; 2nd Chapter of Acts = Queen. The question "Why should the Devil have all the good music?" answered itself.
I wish a new generation of scholars would take a hard look at evangelicalism, in particular its cultural manifestations. Material Christianity deserves a fresh new look. Is their a distinct aesthetic of evangelicalism? What is it? Puppet shows and Mimestry? Who are/were the chief taste-makers? Thomas Kincade and Russ Taff? Francis Schaeffer and Frank Peretti?