Calvinist Holy Hip Hop artists: Ministers of the Gospel?
I stumbled across T.C. Moore’s article on Holy Hip Hop and Calvinism the other day.
Let’s just say, I’m not impressed.
It’s not the style of the article that bugs me. It’s the content. Here’s a recap for those of you who just tuned in.
Moore in his Calvinism and Hip Hop series starts off talking about his background as a white urbanite.
As a kid, he was immersed in Hip Hop culture.
Anyway, one day, it happened. Bam. He became a Christian in 1999. I guess he tells us this to engender himself to the Christian Hip Hop community.
Moore doesn’t delve into the details of his Christ-encounter, in this article, but it probably has something to do with him “accepting” Christ.
Since he was Hip Hop all the way, he started looking for Hip Hop methadone—you know the Christian version of rap for recovering Hip Hop addicts.
Unlike much of the dross in other Christian genres, Moore was able to find some good substitutes in Urban D and the Cross Movement.
Moore said he began to be alarmed by all the Calvinist theology Holy Hip Hoppers were espousing.
And gee, even some Holy Hip Hop artists, such as the Ambassador, even have degrees in theology.
Moore said that Calvinism teaches that God has already ordained everything that will come to pass presently and in the future. And since He does that –foreordain things–those who preach Calvinism are preaching the theology of the oppressed.
That pretty much sums of Moore’s article. If I left something out, let me know.
Anyway, like I said before, I didn’t think much of the article.
If God knows everything that’s going to happen, there’s an amount of foreordaining that is implied since He let it happen knowing that it was going to happen.
I don’t know why Moore wants to beat down Holy Hip Hop artists for expounding on the scriptures in an informed way.
If artists such as the Ambassador went to college and have studied, at least I can be assured that they have informed opinions, especially since many Holy Hip Hop artists consider themselves lyrical theologians.
Now on to the statement about the theology of the oppressed. The Bible makes it clear that things happen, so that God can get the glory.
Consider John 9 where Jesus healed a man. The scribes and Pharisees ask who sinned to make the man blind. Jesus said, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.”
That implies that suffering is in God’s plan. I know that sounds harsh, but God knows the way He wants things to play out for His glory.
In the Beatitudes, Jesus Christ, who was God in the flesh, did not even promise that everything was going to be happy –go-lucky for the poor. Jesus said in Matthew 5:3-12, that believers would mourn, be meek, and face persecution.
Moore says that Calvinists tell people “‘You are God’s Elect.’ Simultaneously and secondly, you tell the weak, the marginalizes, the oppressed…they are unchosen of God… God has elected them to pain, misery, exploitation, and despair.”
First off, the Bible clearly illustrates the idea of Election. Ephesians 1 is just one of the chapters in the Bible that deals with the issue.
Secondly, what does Moore want Calvinists to be? Prosperity preachers who promise pie in the sky and jets the fly high (I just made that up)?
What is so wrong with God electing people to pain,misery, exploitation, and despair? Jesus was clearly God’s elect, yet He grew up in Nazareth—a dirty, poor, and overpopulated place.
The Scripture says that the Messiah would be a man of sorrows acquainted with grief (Isaiah 53:3).
While we all want to live pain-free lives here and now, a lot of times, we just gotta get through this.
Furthermore, if not for God’s allowing people to be in poverty, which Moore has a problem with,there would be none of the Holy Hip Hop music he loves. For it, as Moore mentions in his article, was born out of oppression.
I think Moore has a problem with God’s justice.
This is understandable since we don’t always understand the will of God right away.
However, since the Holy Hip Hop artists are just calling the Gospel like they see it, Moore should really take up his problems with God, and leave the Calvinist Holy Hip Hop artists alone.