Christian rock used to be an oxymoron. Before the 1990s, most so-called Christian music consisted of choirs, organs, and traditional hymns. While that was fine for the time, as more and more churches sought new ways to attract younger parishioners, more progressive churches began to pop up, offering more upbeat, electric music.
This naturally helped spawn a whole new genre of music. Christian rock is now mostly considered mainstream, as bands like Creed, Flyleaf, POD, Thousand Foot Crutch, Switchfoot, and Skillet have sold millions of records, won awards, and played sold-out shows to millions of rock music fans.
It is no longer unusual for a community church to have a full electric band every Sunday, playing reimagined contemporary classics as well as newer Christian rock songs. This angle has helped lure younger people into churches, but the events of the last several years have many worried that being hip and cool with the music simply isn’t enough.
One of the biggest bands of the genre is Skillet. Formed in 1996 by John Cooper, the band now consists of Cooper, his wife Korey Cooper, Jen Ledger, and Seth Morrison. The hard-edged style of their music resonated with the early 2000s rock scene, and the band landed hit after hit on their way to selling millions of albums and winning awards.
What is more surprising is the band achieved all of this without compromising their sound, their message, or their faith. In fact, Skillet still actively tours and makes music and eleven studio albums later are still going strong, both in their music and their message.
Their founder and lead singer, John Cooper, is also an accomplished author, and his latest book is ruffling liberal feathers everywhere. “WIMPY WEAK and WOKE: How Truth Can Save America From Utopian Destruction” is a searing insight into exactly what is wrong with this country and perhaps how to begin to fix it.
In a recent interview, Cooper said: “If there’s anything that’s clear to me, there is a revolution to tear down American society; the entire structures of this system. But it’s not really about tearing down America, it’s about tearing down the underpinnings of what built America, Christian civilization. There is a revolution to tear down Christianity, the reflection of Christ in any of our cultures, our traditions, our sexual mores, our theology, our culture. Our everything!”
Cooper also has a popular YouTube series where he talks about current events and his view of what is happening through a Christian lens. Again, this hasn’t sat well with liberals either. In his book, Cooper attempts to lay out the path the woke movement is trying to forge in contrast to a Christian path.
When describing the opposing paths, Cooper said: “It’s going to be a pluralistic society of tolerance: utopia. And, of course, that always ends up in dystopia where you kill millions of people. The other divergent side is going to be the principles of the Kingdom of God. How we thrive, how we flourish. So that’s what the book is about.”
Cooper’s book takes a deeper dive and discusses “critical race theory, gender identity, statism, anti-Americanism, DEI, socialism, Marxism, the attack on civil liberties and religion, and progressive Christianity.”
The most scathing comments from Cooper came as he described his definition of “woke.” He continued: “We are woke, because we have redefined what it means to be oppressed. My definition of woke is basically PC culture on steroids through, a lens of Neo-Marxism. [People say], ‘Caring about the poor isn’t woke.’ Absolutely accurate. If you’re a Christian, you’re supposed to care for the poor. You are supposed to help the poor, you are supposed to hate racism. You are supposed to hate actual sexism, not made-up sexism and made-up racism. So you’re supposed to hate these things and fight for justice.”
“Wimpy, Weak, and Woke” is the follow-up to his bestselling debut, “Awake and Alive,” and if early previews are any indication, the book is going to be a scathing rebuke of woke culture. John Cooper and Skillet continue to make music, spread the word, and attack radical ideology, and we are better for it.
Featured image screen grab from embedded YouTube video
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