Is rock and roll the devil’s music?
Time to throw away some of your rock albums?
Alice Cooper, Marilyn Manson, Metallica, Black Sabbath, AC/DC…the reputation of rock as the Devil’s music has been well deserved… but does that mean it is the Devil’s music?
The Bible is far from giving us any reason to believe rock music is of the Devil. In fact, the Bible declares that “the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it” (Psalm 24:1), and surely this must include rock music. All things belong to God, the earth is his and so is all the music within it.
So here are some quick tips from the Bible:
1. If it is leading you into sin, flee from it! In the case of rock music (or any music for that matter) it may not be a sin to listen to it, but it is a sin to promote a false view of God, hatred towards God, hatred towards others, and to racially or sexually vilify another person. I think all of these would be examples of failing “to love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength”, and failure “to love your neighbour as yourself” (Luke 10:27).
2. If it is occupying the priority of Jesus in your life, then flee from it! There is no other influence that has shaped youth culture like music does. The question we need to ask is: How much does the music I choose to listen to shape my identity? I love music, but when music shapes my values and behaviour more than the Lord Jesus, then it’s become my idol, and the apostle Paul says “flee from it!” (1 Cor. 10:14).
3. If it is causing problems for other people, then for their sake don’t do it If the music I listen to is unhelpful for other people, then for their sake I won’t listen to it - at the very least, not around them. This is Paul’s instruction to the Christian church in Corinth: “I have the right to do anything - but not everything is beneficial [helpful]… No one should seek their own good, but the good of others” (1 Cor. 10:23-25).
So, can I listen to rock music?
Short answer: go for it. But be mindful of the influence it has on your life and the people around you.