KIRK FRANKLIN HAS ONCE AGAIN TAKEN “GOSPEL MUSIC” TOO FAR
By Akin Ojumu
For those of you who think that gospel music has gone too far
You think we’ve got too radical with our message
Well, I’ve got news for ya
You ain’t heard nothin yet
And if ya don’t know, now ya know
Glory! Glory! Wohhh!!!
Those were the opening lines of the 1997 hit song by Kirk Franklin. STOMP, as the rap song was titled, was a fast tempo and ear catching contemporary music with special and targeted appeal to an audience well outside the mainstream of Christianity back then. STOMP was a song specifically designed to demolish established norms and break down the walls that separated the Church from the corrosive influence of the world outside.
As it is with such music, STOMP was a huge success. It went triple platinum, selling more than 3 million albums, making it one of the top best-selling “Gospel” songs of all time. Franklin went on to win multiple Dove and Grammy Awards. The former was given by the Gospel Music Association of the United States to recognize outstanding achievement in the Christian music industry, and the latter by the Recording Academy to recognize "Outstanding Achievement in the music industry" of the United States.
Though dubbed a “Gospel” or “Christian” song, STOMP was anything but Gospel or Christian. The lyrics, though sprinkled here and there with Christianese, was based on the faulty theology of the new age ideology. In the accompanying music video, the conducts of the performers – with their sensual gyrations and body movements, wieldy hairdos, and Kirk Franklin himself doing the Snake dance which has its origin in Hindu worship – bore no resemblance to authentic Christianity. STOMP was a worldly song from the pit of hell erroneously stamped Christian.
Yet back then, many of us, including yours truly, lapped it all up with unbridled exuberance. In our desire to show the world that we Christian folks were also dope, we embraced STOMP and stomped around university campuses bubbling our heads as we whistled to the tune of STOMP ringing in our ears. With STOMP, we erroneously believed that evangelizing the Unbels, as we used to call the unbelievers, was going to be much easier. We thought that STOMP would attract and convert sinners in droves.
It was all a lie. But we were too jaded and deluded to see STOMP for what it really was. What Kirk Franklin – well, it was actually the Devil using Kirk Franklin – did with STOMP was to dangle a bait before our eyes. It was a bait loaded with our most intimate weaknesses i.e., the sins that most easily beset us. And many of us fell for it as we foolishly reached out for the bait and got sucked into the things of this world.
STOMP was Kirk Franklin summoning the youth of the church worldwide to stomp out of the Church in protest against the ancient landmarks. STOMP was the introduction of new age “Christian” music into our Christian fellowships on campus. STOMP opened a can of rotten worms into the “Gospel” music industry that continues to fester even till this day.
Since the release of STOMP, the condition of the Church has gotten progressively worse. The bright line of demarcation that once existed between the Church and the world has since been erased. Today, the world and Church have become intertwined with and indistinguishable from each other. As the Church has become worldly, the world has gone exponentially more berserk. From the pew to the pulpit, the Body of Christ has become contaminated, and the soul of the Church corrupted.
Yet, as if he hasn’t done enough damage already, Kirk Franklin is back again with yet another one from Satan’s throne. In his latest song, Kirk Franklin declares:
“The Lion and the Lamb will bow down to the Goat!”
Here we have a supposedly Gospel singer pretty much saying that the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah and Lamb of God, will bow down to Satan, who is the Goat.
When, twenty-five years ago, Kirk Franklin said that “You ain’t heard nothin’ yet,” he really meant it. His latest “Gospel” song is proof. And that should tell you all you need to know about Kirk Franklin’s professed Christian faith.