Time to Weed the Garden?
I love Savage Garden, but I'm wondering where they stand on religion and if their lyrics are appropriate. Do you know any Christian bands that sound like them?
I can understand why you love Savage Garden. The two guys who make up this pop group seem like they're pretty cool. In articles I've read about them, they come across as down-to-earth, sensitive and thoughtful. And their music communicates pretty much the same thing. On Savage Garden's most recent CD, Affirmation, the guys sing about relationships, and about what it means to be a caring and loving person. The dynamic vocal duo also tackles a significant social issue—wife abuse. In "Two Beds and a Coffee Machine," they tell a moving tale of a woman who made the choice to escape abuse. It's a passionate song packed with a powerful message.
Then there's the title tune in which the guys "affirm" stuff they believe in:
I believe the sun should never set upon an argument …
I believe your parents did the best job they knew how to do
I believe that beauty magazines promote low esteem
With all of these good statements, however, come two lines that trouble me:
I believe you can't control or choose your sexuality
I believe that trust is more important than monogamy
Amid all their good and positive statements about life and relationships, they imply there's nothing wrong with homosexuality. But the Bible teaches that homosexuality is an unnatural act and a sin. (See Romans 1:26-27 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-10.) I also have problems with the second statement. Trust is not more important than monogamy; both are very important. Christians believe that married couples—couples who practice monogamy—not only must trust one another, but they must also be sexually faithful to one another. (See Matthew 19:4-6 and Hebrews 13:4.)
Please don't misunderstand me. I don't expect Savage Garden to write music that agrees with Christian morals. I don't know where they "stand on religion," as you asked, but I didn't read anything about the group that would indicate they're trying to live by truths found in the Bible. What I am saying is that we must not buy into ideas and perspectives that simply aren't scripturally correct.
It's always important to use Scripture to carefully evaluate whatever comes our way. This holds true not only for music, but also for movies we watch and books we read. And while we can learn good and valuable lessons from stuff that's not labeled "Christian," we must "test" those lessons by God's Word. If something contradicts the Bible's moral teachings, then we must not believe it. I should also add that this "scriptural test" holds true for stuff that's even labeled "Christian." If something contradicts the Word of God, it's not correct. God's Word should always be the means by which we measure truth.
Finally, you asked if I knew of any Christian groups with a sound similar to Savage Garden. I would like to mention three strong alternatives. The first is a twosome known as Ash Mundae. The group's debut album, Model Citizen (Red Hill) comes with thoughtful lyrics grounded in faith in Christ. I'd also encourage you to check out Fine China's When the World Sings (Tooth & Nail). Another solid Christian group with a sound similar to Savage Garden is a smooth pop trio called Jake. This group's self-titled debut (Reunion) is currently in stores, and their sophomore project will be released in September. And if you like the "electronica" and dance side of Savage Garden, you'll like Fine China. And while the lyrics aren't as straightforward as Ash Mundae's and Jake's, they're still full of wonderful and worshipful insights about living faith in the real world.