Ministry Focus of the Christian Music Industry

We had an overwhelming response to the question of, “What are your thoughts on the Christian Music Industry?” Many of you responded feeling that there is a lot of good and bad in the industry. 

We wanted to take this questions back to the original roots of the question, and focus on what in the Christian Music Industry, (that is supposed to be centered around Christ) doing for the will of God?

Where is actual ministry taking place? (Sorry but selling cd’s, t-shrits, and concert tickets to a circle of believers does not classify as ministry, more like entertainment) 

What are some of the vision and mission statements that Christian Industry Organization have to reach people that don’t know Christ?

Team IML 

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9 responses to “Ministry Focus of the Christian Music Industry

  1. I’m not sure the Christian music industry is able to target ministry to the lost, at least not on their own. Christian musicians, like any other Christians should always be focused on loving and ministering to the lost, but Christian music by its very nature appeals to Christians (and hopefully, to God).

    Some of the ways I’ve seen Christian musicians attempt to target the lost (with kind of so-so results (as defined by new and growing baby believers in local churches)): Holding an outdoor concert in a poor and crime-ridden part of town, holding outdoor concerts in 3rd world countries, raising support for ministries to the lost. Casting Crowns is holding a concert on the Pine Ridge Reservation this Labor Day to help raise money for a youth center. I predict lots of white middle-class Christians from Rapid City (an hour or so away) will attend with probably a small though significant minority of Lakota people.

    I’m musing here, and maybe I’m wrong, but tell me what you think . . . Music is a great stimulator of emotions. Emotion is good, not bad, but it isn’t enough. If a person, in an emotional response to music or great preaching or whatever, agrees to pray the “sinner’s prayer”, but goes no farther with it, is he “saved”? Did it “take”? I kind of think, No.

    So what if this new “convert” really is responding to the Spirit of God and truly does believe that God raised Jesus from the dead and confess Him as Lord. How is that going to go for him during the weeks after the concert if there is no support structure? I’m telling you, it is hard to find a church where this anonymous new convert can walk in and immediately become part of the “in” crowd and receive the disciplining he or she will need. It’s not that she can’t survive or grow, but it won’t be easy for her with little or no ongoing support. Listening to CDs of her inspiring musicians will certainly help, but it’s not going to be enough.

    That said, I believe the primary purpose of Christian music should be to bring worship to God. Secondary; to bring God’s people before Him in a life-changing experience of worship. Tertiary, to teach the church about God; what He’s like, what He’s done, who He is. If Christian musicians can directly minister to the lost, that’s great, but I believe NT precedent is for believers to minister to the lost.

    Good question–You’ve made me think and I’ll probably be thinking about it on and off all day. 🙂

    God bless,

    Cindy

  2. Cindy you make a lot of valid points. There are a lot of artists that do this on an ongoing basis and have a deep heart for ministry. Of course it doesn’t always make it up to the business side, but there are many people in the industry that are reaching out for people. I think sometimes it is frustrating that Christian Music is using Christ’s name for entertainment and not for a greater purpose. I do believe strongly that God can use anything to lead people closer to him. Might not always be something we favor as Christians, but the earth is his and not ours. Thanks again for your insight.

  3. This is certainly an interesting time for the entire music industry and perhaps especially the “Christian Music Industry.” I think most would agree we are now in the era of the “indie artist.” From that standpoint, it becomes a bit more focused as you examine and consider the artist and his or her ministry rather than an industry or a label/company. You also have to consider the purpose of the event as well as the audience. A ministry approach to a “church” audience is a whole lot different than an approach to say a “battle of the bands” at your state college. When asking “where is ministry taking place,” it’s like asking “where is God at work today.” The answers are so varied and so marvelous you will have millions upon millions of different answers. And isn’t that just the way God so often works? Every time we think we’ve got Him figured out, he rocks our socks off. So much so, that sometimes, He can even use someone like me. Absolutely amazing!

  4. Glad you brought this back up, seemed to get really interesting/off-target last time and I’m sorry I missed the convo! My thoughts as to what the Christian music industry is doing for the will of God and where the ministry is taking place have always been, it’s all about the Christians.
    I was in a Christian worship band for several years and the people we most ministered to were other Christians. That’s the reality, but that is not to say that there wasn’t work to be done there. We were very, hhmm, forward thinking and that was what some teens needed to see when we played in nowhereville, USA. They needed to see/relate to people who weren’t the traditional lay person, it helped them grow as both individuals and believers. However, the Christian music industry is merely a response to lower “standards(?)” regarding lyrics and lifestyles of musicians deemed secular, it’s the same thing, just for a different market! I think we as Christians con ourselves into thinking it’s something else. God can speak through any medium, I get more out of “great” music than I ever did out of “Christian” music. We need to understand that the Christian music industry exists to make a Christian feel safe, so we don’t have to think. Some could call this ministry, and I’m not saying that we shouldn’t write/sing to/about God, but the CMI is a crutch that both we and artists use to simplify things for ourselves, not God.
    Therefore I don’t believe the CMI has any obligations to “reach people who don’t know Christ” beyond doing what we’re called to do as Christians. We kid ourselves by making it their responsibility to take the message of the gospel to our friends while we run back into our churches where it is safe. It’s the vision and mission of the CMI to make money and promote positive lyrics/lifestyles, nothing more.

  5. There have been several Christian bands and artists that sneaked into the industry and hit Grammies. So, The Christian artist can make it and I hope they keep trying to sound new and show their creative side. I have to encourage Christians to get into the industry by training inside the industry, then break out into their own just like everyone else. But the training starts under a professional while working on real projects at http://www.recordingconnection.com with a proven track record you can trust and afford. For 20+years the success rate remains high.

  6. ive been in the front lines of the music business, and worked with dozens of the top artists and organizations in the world.

    Its funny how the artist/organizations that have ministry as a priority are the making the most money.

    Ive witnessed a lead singer pour his heart out to the audience in a way that only a man of God could do. Then watch people RUN to the merch table after their lives were genuinely changed.

    chew on that for a while.

  7. Lee, we have seen the same thing over and over again. we sometimes look at where are worship artists that are playing for nothing in return, prisons, juvenile detention centers, etc,

    There needs to be a change, and I don’t think the industry is the front runner for that.

  8. I think the most ministry-centered thing in the music industry is artists leading wholehearted worship… there’s no doubt that God is the center and relationships with Him are strengthened through that.

  9. Jacob Sandberg - Texas

    WOW. That’s my School or YEAH! And recently, my mentor and I did lesson twelve and continued showing me the art of Pro Tools. He has been an awesome mentor, I highly look up to him because he cares about me retaining my education (unlike college professors). My progress in my new field of study is astonishing, my musical creativity has increased a hundred fold. I am highly looking forward to learning more and hopefully working for Mr. Weaver in the near future. Next week I’m bringing my guitar to record a few licks and start really getting the hang of setting up the studio and begin recording. GOD BLESS YOU all for this opportunity.

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