Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Another One Bites the Dust

Several years ago, "Christian" artist Joy Williams did an interview where she talked about purity and modesty. What she said, I would have applauded. Here is a snippet of that interview:
Mercy Hope: There is a lot of talk right now about the issues of dating and sexual purity. I believe that purity has to start at the heart level because what’s in the heart is going to come out. What would you say to girls to help them keep their way pure?

Joy Williams: I think you’re right; purity does start within, which is a heart issue. 2 Timothy chapter two talks about ‘fleeing the evil desires of your youth,’ Proverbs 31 talks about what a Godly woman should look like and looking to the future what a Godly wife should look like as well. I do think it is incredibly important for us to remember that we are God’s daughter, we are a princess, we are royalty. We don’t need to dress a certain way to be provocative. We don’t need that type of attention, which ultimately is lust, and not something that the Bible teaches that we need to encourage at all. Walking in purity means walking in self-confidence, which means thanking God for the way that He has made you. Is it perfect to you? No. Will you ever have your perfect body? Absolutely not. If you have identity knowing that God did a good job when he made you, and that He made you purposefully, there is that need and that desire to please Him. How do we please the Lord? By living a pure life. And by setting an example, like 1 Timothy talks about. I do take a very strong stance on abstinence, and not just abstinence, but purity over all. Setting physical guidelines if you are in a relationship and having people keeping you accountable. There is no need to give any part of yourself away, before you are married, which is easier said than done, I know. But God has called us to walk a different way than the world and ultimately there is blessing behind all of that. God didn’t set it up like that so he could just be an angry judge and tell us we couldn’t have fun. God knows what will make us the most joyful; which is us remaining pure and staying true and walking in modesty, and being meek and gentle and kind like all the things that we are called to do. That is a heart issue and something that I take a very strong stance on. I pray that God will continue to keep me walking in purity, and I trust that He will.1 [Spelling, punctuation and grammar corrections mine. Emphasis mine.]
Some time after having read this interview, Joy Williams managed to get released from her contract and joined up with The Civil Wars. The first music video I saw from them, which, if I am not mistaken, I believe was Poison & Wine, made me question Joy's confession of faith. In it, she was conducting herself with less-than-modest behaviour. Behaviour that contradicted everything she had to say in that interview.

With Joy's recent release, Venus, there is no question left in my mind as to the lack of genuineness regarding her profession of faith. Remember Joy's words from above? In particular, "I do take a very strong stance on abstinence, and not just abstinence, but purity over all." Note the stark contrast and mark the contradiction of those words as we continue. The album cover above is pretty tame by comparison to some of the other images related to this album. For example, the below image, which accompanies her single Until the Levee, leaves no question in one's mind as to whether or not she is actually naked.

The final two images below are taken directly from her music video for her song Woman (Oh Mama). There is no shortage of images in this video where she is seen completely naked, albeit not revealing of her private parts. Nevertheless, this is not the kind of thing a genuine follower of Christ Jesus does!

So-called "Christian" artists using sex or sexuality to sell themselves or their music, or for whatever other misguided reasons, is not only UN-Christian, but it is very UN-Christ-like. Whether you can see her "naughty bits" or not is irrelevant. The fact is, she is completely nude and flaunting her sexuality. It drives men's imaginations. A sister in Christ would never do such a thing to her brothers in Christ (let alone other men). A daughter of God would never do such a thing.

Furthermore, when filming music videos or movies and when doing photo shoots, how many people are around? Several! In other words, how many people saw her "naughty bits" during the photo shoot and making of the music video? The audience may see nothing revealing, but how many people involved with the project saw something revealing? How are those people affected by her claim to be a Christian? If they were Christian or non-Christian, it affects them both in different ways.

To the question asked in the title of a song from her first album, Do They See Jesus In Me?... No, no we do not.

The ignorant and equally UN-Christian within the church will come up with all sorts of arguments to try and defend Joy's behaviour and actions, but according to the Bible they are all fools. If any of them had genuine faith in the least, or even attempted to read their Bibles, they would see that such provocativeness is not Christian, nor is it acceptable of a Christian. One's nudity belongs to themselves and their spouse (of the opposite sex—same sex is not a marriage, regardless of what the government says!). It is not for public spectacle!

Joy Williams—like Leslie Phillips, Ray Boltz, Jennifer Knapp, and Vicky Beeching before her—may have released albums under the pretense and guise of Christianity, but quite obviously she neglected to actually get saved and time soon revealed her to be a false convert. Being raised in a Christian home does not make one a Christian. Going to church every Sunday does not make one a Christian. Praying and reading the Bible does not make one a Christian. "Asking Jesus into your heart," "making a decision for Christ," believing in whatever idolatrous "Jesus" you have created in your own mind to suit your own personal beliefs and desires does not make one a Christian. Walking an aisle and signing a card does not make one a Christian. Praying "the sinner's prayer" does not make one a Christian. Releasing albums under a Christian or "Christian" record label does not make one a Christian.

"They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, in order that it might be shown that they all are not of us" (1 John 2:19). "Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. And you know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin. No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. Little children, let no one deceive you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might destroy the works of the devil. No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother." (1 John 3:4-10).

If you claim to be a Christian, read the Bible and do not like something you read in the New Testament about Christian life and character, and so change it to suit your own agenda, guess what? You are not a Christian!!! North American "Christianity" is a joke. The church has lost sight of what it means to be a Christian and has preached a false gospel and filled their pews with false converts speeding down the wide path that leads directly to Hell. The church has lost sight of what it means to be separate from the world and to show them a better way. Instead, they have become like the world in order to try and win the world and gotten dragged down with the world.

The New Testament describes and defines a Christian—a disciple, a follower of Jesus—very specifically. Jesus will not give you fire insurance if you have not submitted your entire life to Him and walk in accordance with His words, growing in holiness. Too many people claim to be Christians, wanting fire insurance, but wanting nothing to do personally with Jesus or with living a holy life. "They profess to know God, but they deny Him by their works, being detestable and disobedient, and worthless for any good deed" (Titus 1:16). "Holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power" (2 Timothy 3:5).