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Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Healer Hoax

By now you may have heard about the latest big hoax.

Australian songwriter/pastor Michael Guglielmucci is in some deep doody. Michael penned the song, “Healer” made popular by both Planetshakers and Hillsong.

The song had some extra appeal to some because Michael made very public a battle he has faced with “a very aggressive form of cancer” for the past two years. YouTube videos (no longer available) and this one on the CCLI site and here show Guglielmucci with an oxygen tube in his nose singing the song he said he was compelled to write after getting the news of his cancer.

Someone's pants are on fire.

He lied.

Apparently, it was not only the church that was deceived but also his own family.

I am praying Bill Maher has already done the final cut of his movie, Religulous and leaves this one out.

A few of my friends have posted on this and a few have asked my opinion. So, I will give it. I agree on many points and strongly disagree with other points made by my friends such as Rich, Fred and Los. This is iron sharpening iron. Hopefully we all learn a lot from this. I'm glad we can all be friends and banter a bit.

First, on the issue of this man’s failure:::Yep. He blew it. Big time. We can say “all sin is sin” and all the other little sayings we like to say but the fact is some sin is weightier. Some sin has bigger fallout. Some sin hurts more people. Some sin ruins lives. Some sin drags the name of Jesus through the mud. This one qualifies.

I have seen another person--close to me--get swallowed up in a lie of these proportions before and it is disgusting.

The whole sentiment of “this could happen to any of us” is not necessarily true. Yes, none of us are above doing something stupid but there are a lot of little compromises and overlooked issues along the way that bring someone to this point. This could happen to any of us if a whole lot of things are out of whack. This crap doesn’t just “happen.” I’ll guarantee you this man didn’t wake up one day and decide to have cancer in a silo of sin.

On grace:::Yep. We need to give it. But, it doesn’t negate our anger and disappointment. And, grace doesn’t mean patting someone on the back and saying, “we’re all in this together, man” as if it isn’t a big deal. No. Grace looks like walking a long road of healing, counseling, crying, tough love, discipline, and picking up pieces. I also trust the job of walking that road with him will be handled well by his church. This is one of the benefits of accountability in community.

On a song or person being “anointed”:::The word anointed gets thrown around a lot in Christian circles do describe what happens when it seems God has set a person or a thing apart from some greater purpose. Some said this song is anointed or that this man was anointed.

Some are now questioning the anointing because they feel betrayed and tricked.

I do not believe songs are anointed. Songs are either good or bad. God can and does use songs from all genres penned by all kinds but a song is a song.

God uses some songs that I think are horrible. Quite frankly, I think this song is boring. I think it is cliché and dull. But, God has used it. He can do what he wants. And, I believe God can and will redeem the fallout from this dumb move and teach us all.

We don’t really see “things” being anointed in scripture. Used? Yes. But not anointed. In Psalm 45 we see a wedding psalm where “lips are anointed with grace” but even that is poetic language and may not be the best translation since the word used there is only translated “anointed” once. The word is more commonly used as “cast” or “poured.”

The Bible talks about anointing of kings, priests, prophets, and apostles with the ultimate Anointed One being our high priest—Jesus. The 2nd Testament paints a picture of all believers being anointed in that we have the Holy Spirit—and He is the anointing. The book of 1 John is a great picture of how we are to live as ones who have “an anointing from the Holy One (2:20).”

On “banning” the song:::Banning the song is dumb. If your church loves it, use it. Tell the story. Use it as a teachable moment. A song is a song. It is not “tainted” because of this mess. It’s a song. We are so quick to ban and boycott. I get so tired of this.

On pulling the video from the internet:::Well, this is a tough one. I don’t think it needs to be pulled as punishment. I don’t think it needs to be pulled because it is soiled. I don’t agree with the arguments some are making saying it was a song written based on a lie and is therefore no longer valid. It may be a good idea to pull it in order to stop the bickering and stupid talk, however.

So, how do things get to this? We don't always know. I don't know this man's story. Not knowing all the ins and outs it is hard to give advice and I don't want to. I am praying and trusting his church will handle this well.

Praying for this man’s family. Praying for his church. Praying for THE church. Praying for Hillsong. Praying it doesn't get out of hand. Praying the main-stream-media doesn't have a field day. Praying for this man.

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