This past Sunday night, a former Christian singer performed a song replete with satanic imagery and witchcraft at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards. Another Christian singer made her way to the exit. The former did so because she has completely repudiated any affiliation with Christianity. The latter did so because she can’t and won’t.
Katy Perry performed DARK HORSE alongside rapper, Juicy J. Starting inside a crystal ball with dancing demons circling all around her, she then did a faux pole dance on an upside down wooden broom. The song ended with her standing in front of a fire resembling a blazing furnace. E! ONLINE tweeted, “Um, did we just witness actual witchcraft during Katy Perry’s #Grammys performance?” US Weekly said, “Katy Perry Dresses Like Witch. Gets Burned at the Stake During ‘Dark Horse’ Grammys 2014 Performance.”1
Natalie Grant, who was nominated for two Grammy Awards, left “after witnessing performances that even secular media outlets like E! Online said were occult in nature, such as Katy Perry’s witchcraft ceremony dubbed ‘Satanic’ by many.”2 Grant said, “We left the Grammys early. I’ve many thoughts, most of which are probably better left inside my head. But I’ll say this: I’ve never been more honored to sing about Jesus and for Jesus. And I’ve never been more sure of the path I’ve chosen.”3
This past Sunday night’s event was full of jaw dropping performances from Beyonce and Jay-Z’s suggestive performance of her hit song, Drunk In Love to Pink’s acrobatic display, singing and swinging from the ceiling out over the audience, to Robin Thicke joining forces with Chicago, and a Beatles’ reunion of sorts with Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr.
But the most shocking performance of the night had to be the MASS WEDDING involving “33 homosexual and heterosexual couples which took place as (rappers) Macklemore & Ryan Lewis performed a rendition of their pro-gay marriage anthem ‘Same Love.’ The segment, which has been criticized by many for being inappropriate for the music awards, also featured Madonna and Mary Lambert.”4
“The mass wedding was presided over and officiated by Queen Latifah, who was deputized by Los Angeles County to legally conduct wedding ceremonies. The couple exchanged rings as Queen Latifah said: ‘Music has the power to bring people together at the Grammys. This song is a love song not for some of us but all of us!”5
“Macklemore & Lewis’ ‘Same Love’ is widely known as a pro-gay marriage anthem, and has been used by gay activists in their push for a redefinition of marriage. The lyrics of the song push for a redefining of marriage, so that it would be between any two consenting adults, as opposed to what Christians believe is the biblical definition of marriage as created by God – the union between one man and one woman before God.”6
I didn’t watch the Grammys live on Sunday night, but have had plenty of time to hear, read about and witness what happened through the media and from numerous notes I’ve received from friends and fellow Christians. While I’m saddened by what happened at the Grammys, I’m not surprised. What should we expect from a culture that is completely devoid of any remaining remnant of common sense morality? Or from so many artists who are amoral at best and immoral at worst?
Some Christians and Christian leaders have mustered the courage to call out those who created the controversy at this year’s Grammys. But the vast majority, unlike Natalie Grant, have remained silent.
Illicit lyrics, suggestive or more accurately, completely immoral outfits or dance routines, while being beyond objectionable are not my focus here. My main concern is the blatant assault on the Church and Christianity which took place at the Grammys. While the occult–themed song by Katy Perry sought to glorify Satanism, the song ‘Same Love,’ by Macklemore & Lewis, Madonna and Queen Latifah sought to vilify and disparage the Church and Christianity. The set, clearly meant to resemble a church (were those supposed to be stained glass windows?), complete with a choir in choir robes and a female preacher/worship leader, was nothing more than an in-your-face mocking of the Church, its beliefs and practices. Both the set, song and singers enthusiastically and unashamedly promoted homosexuality and lesbianism while profaning God, the Bible, the Church and every Bible-believing Christian.
Whatever you had previously thought or heard about tolerance and political correctness was thrown out the artificial stained glass windows on the Grammy’s stage in favor of a parade of perversion whose sole intent was to promote an anti-Christian platform of a pro-homosexual agenda.
Thankfully there were some who stood up with Natalie Grant. Like former Alabama quarterback, AJ McCarron, who among others, “found the Grammys sadly lacking in taste, common sense and decency. He tweeted that the Grammys ‘seem to be really demonic?? Looks like there is a lot of evil in the world.’”7
One of the reasons our culture has no conscience is, largely in part, because we have a Church without convictions. Too many seem content to coddle those who continue to do what God’s Word condemns. Irrespective of the fact the Bible is clear: “Do you not know the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).
Homosexuality is not singled out in those verses, but it is clearly included and the message is clear: If anyone lives their life in immorality of any kind and lives in open defiance to what God says, they WILL NOT go to Heaven. That’s not a homophobic statement. It’s a biblical statement warning us that our choices have eternal ramifications.
Just because celebrities like Elton John, Ellen DeGeneres, Ricky Martin, Rosie O’ Donnell, Jodie Foster, Lady Gaga, Neil Patrick Harris, Anderson Cooper, or even Robin Roberts, to name a few, lower their standards and approve of, endorse and encourage others to participate in a lifestyle of homosexuality, doesn’t mean God has lowered His. In fact, God said, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and shrewd in their own sight” (Isaiah 5:20-21).
Someone once said, “A lie doesn’t become truth, wrong doesn’t become right, and evil doesn’t become good, just because it’s accepted by a majority.” When morality is left up to a majority, it’s only a matter of time before anything goes and moral absolutes become obsolete. Thankfully, Heaven isn’t a democracy determined by majority vote. It’s a Theocracy decided by One vote: God’s.
In 2 Peter 3:9, the Bible says, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” The Church should do the same thing, being patient, not wanting anyone to perish. However, being patient doesn’t mean being silent or compromising the truth of God’s Word. Like Natalie Grant, AJ McCarron and others this past Sunday night, we need to stand up for what’s right and hold high God’s unchanging Word.
Because a church without convictions or a conscience won’t help anyone come to repentance.
© 2014. Barry L. Cameron
1 Jeannie Law, "Katy Perry's 'Dark Horse" Grammy Awards' Performance Filled with Satanic Imagery and Witchcraft," 27 Jan. 2014 <http://www.breathecast.com/articles/katy-perry-dark-horse-grammy-awards-performance-filled-satanic-imagery-witchcraft-13680/>.
2 Kathryn Darden, "Natalie Grant leaves Grammys early -- Tweets cause media frenzy," 27 Jan. 2014 <http://www.examiner.com/article/natalie-grant-leaves-grammys-early-tweets-cause-media-frenzy>.
3 Kathryn Darden.
4 Jennifer Jones, "Natalie Grand responds after leaving Grammys early; Mass wedding at award show criticized as 'political stunt' to push gay marriage agenda;" 29 Jan. 2014 <http://www.christiantoday.com/article
5 Jennifer Jones.
6 Jennifer Jones.
7 Kathryn Darden, "Natalie Grant leaves Grammys early -- Tweets cause media frenzy," 27 Jan. 2014 <http://www.examiner.com/article/natalie-grant-leaves-grammys-early-tweets-cause-media-frenzy>.
Barry L. Cameron has been the Senior Pastor of Crossroads since 1992 when the church was averaging 188 in morning worship. Today, more than 8,000 people call Crossroads their church home. Pastor Cameron and his wife, Janis, have three children and two grandsons. He’s the author of the bestseller: The ABCs of Financial Freedom, Contagious Generosity, and The Financial Freedom Workbook. The Cameron family has been completely debt free since November 2001.