Screwing for Virginity

Fighting for peace is like screwing for virginity.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Songs about Jesus you'll probably never sing in church

Ryan's recent Mind over Media project got me thinking about media criticism from a Christian perspective. Check out the discussions over there.

In the meantime, I'd like us to discuss these two songs about Jesus. My COR 100 class discussed these freshman year, and I'd like to see how our ideas differ. Listen to both songs if you can. I've linked to a free download of the first, but I could only find a 30-second sample of the second.

"American Jesus"
by Bad Religion
Download MP3

I don't need to be a global citizen,
'Cuz I'm blessed by nationality.
I'm a member of a growing populace,
We enforce our popularity.
There are things that seem to pull us under and,
There are things that drag us down.
But there's a power and a vital presence,
It's lurking all around.

We've got the American Jesus,
See him on the interstate.
We've got the American Jesus,
He helped build the President's estate.

I feel sorry for the Earth's population,
'Cuz so few live in the U.S.A.
At least the foreigners can copy our morality,
They can visit but they cannot stay.
Only precious few can garner our prosperity,
It makes us walk with renewed confidence.
We got a place to go when we die,
And the architect resides right here.

We've got the American Jesus,
Bolstering national faith.
We've got the American Jesus,
Overwhelming millions every day.

He's the farmer's barren fields, (In God)
The force the army wields, (We trust)
Expressions on the faces of the starving millions, (Because He's one of us)
The power of the man, (Break down)
He's the fuel that drives the Klan, (Cave in)
He's the motive and the conscience of the murderer, (We can redeem your sins)
He's the preacher on T.V., (Strong heart)
The false sincerity, (Clear mind)
The form letter that's written by the big computers, (And infinitely kind)
The nuclear bombs, (You lose)
The kids with no moms, (We win)
And I'm fearful that he's inside me... (He is our champion)

We've got the American Jesus
See him on the interstate
We've got the American Jesus
Exercising his authority
We've got the American Jesus
Bolstering national faith
We've got the American Jesus
Overwhelming millions every day

One nation, under God...

"Under Bridges"
by Brave Saint Saturn
30-second sample

Yesterday while walking,
Beneath an overpass,
I saw the figure of Jesus,
Standing barefoot on broken glass.
His beard was graying,
The smell of urine filled the air,
Asking if I had some change,
Anything that I could spare.

His shaking fists balled up,
Influenza and pneumonia,
Begging God to take his cup.
So different from his pictures,
Breathing air through yellowed tubes,
Jesus Christ, dying of AIDS,
Can look right through you.

And all have hated,
Crucified and walked away,
The Savior of the prostitutes,
Drunkards, rapists, and the gays.

Under bridges,
With hands raised,
From the ghettos they praise his name.
Broke and crippled in the dark of night,
Raise your voices to Jesus Christ,

I'll ask some conversation starter questions if I need to. For now feel free to take the conversation in whatever direction you wish.