There comes a time in every Christian’s life when you must prayerfully consider which CCM artists you could defeat in a street fight.
This will be sort of like the post about fighting theologians, only with less Trevin Wax. Also, this list will be only dudes. Because call me old fashioned, but I refuse to fight female CCM artists, no matter how many times Out of Eden drives by my house at night and challenges me.
Let’s start the analysis by examining my strengths and weaknesses:
Ugh. Look at me. Just a hulking, lumbering version of my father. Athletic days far behind me, joints failing, years of Dad Rage coiled inside me like a rusty spring. Cold, dead eyes set deep inside a head that no longer comprehends the whims and fads of the modern world. Married. Three young daughters–or is it four? I am no longer sure. I am but a husk, weathered by the cruel winds of time, standing in my living room at midnight, listening to Sugar Ray and doing bicep curls just to feel alive.
My fighting portfolio:
1) 2009-present: frequent defensive operations (with shovel) against marauding snakes that slither out of the pits of hell and emerge from the Alabama woods to attack my family’s homestead.
2) 2003: One time when I was playing basketball in college we played against televangelist Rod Parsley’s Bible college. I was having a good game and Rod Parsley’s team sent in a goon off the bench to antagonize me. He started pinching my kidneys with his fingertips, which is super creepy, and I turned around and hit him. Anyway, that was a real weird night. Rod Parsley came into our locker room and brought a guy who he said had been healed from being hit by a train. I didn’t know that that was a thing you could receive healing for, but the guy wasn’t dead, so maybe so.
So anyway, could I defeat evangelism’s legendary worship-sprite in a fight? Short answer: I mean…yeah, probably. It would look a little bit like The Mountain fighting the Red Viper, and I know that’s a Game of Thrones reference and I’m a Christian, but I only watch that show for the horrifying violence, not the sex.
Anyway, Tomlin will make you work for it. He’ll bob and weave, dancing circles around you as his every grunt and exhale is recorded by legions of smartphone-wielding Praise Bros, who will option the sounds, add a chorus, and send them directly to our nation’s mega churches to be played for the masses.
PERCENTAGE CHANCE I WOULD DEFEAT HIM IN A FIGHT: 98%
This is a tired man. This is an exhausted man. His fan base is a disparate, gerrymandered collection of warring clans that have almost nothing in common except their shared admiration for him.
The Venn Diagram of his fan base would look like the Olympic rings. He is forced to deal with finicky, jumpy evangelicals who clap back any time he strays off the Falwell Talking Points:
…while at the same time attempting to keep his mainstream fans, who don’t always understand him, either:
Watch the part where Lecrae is eloquently describing the birth of his child, only for one of the co-hosts to blurt out a question of if he is “still with the baby mama”
It’s like he’s processing the question, trying to remind himself where he is and what fan base he’s speaking to. Such is his existence: he goes from John Piper to Sway to arguing with evangelicals on Twitter to trying to defend monogamy on a secular radio show. Just… I mean… that expression.
Anyway, all that to say: he’s stretched too thin, and that’s good news if I ever have to fight him.
PERCENTAGE CHANCE I WOULD DEFEAT HIM IN A FIGHT: 63%
Bear and Bo Rinehart from NEEDTOBREATHE
My life rules:
- do not fight brothers with the last name “Rinehart”
- do not fight people named “Bear”
- do not fight people from the south named “Bear” who played college football
- Friends was overrated
- do not fight brothers who beat the crap out of each other until one of them has to go to the hospital
PERCENTAGE CHANCE I WOULD DEFEAT THEM IN A FIGHT:
only Bear: 28%
only Bo: 31%
both Rineharts: (mathematically 8.7%, probably lower)
You do not worry Gary Chapman. He has seen you coming, felt your approach in his bones. Gary knows. He once spent a winter off the grid with Rich Mullins sleeping in a teepee and living on nothing but peyote and rainwater. He once told Michael W. Smith to go east. He has had benders older than some of your kids. He has been served on Sunday at Chick-fil-A. He will take your best shots, even complimenting you as you punch him again and again. Then you will watch in horror as he slips into a fugue state and begins screaming the name VINCE GILL at you. He will throw haymakers that feel otherworldly, as if you are being hit by the spirits of the saints who have gone before. You probably are. You will be knocked out, and the last thing you see as the sweet glow of mercy envelops you will be Gary gently lowering you to the ground like a gentleman, breaking your fall. Take heart: Gary has knocked out people more famous than you. Ask Matthew West.
PERCENTAGE CHANCE I WOULD DEFEAT HIM IN A FIGHT: 40%
You’re afraid to punch that beard, so you try to punch him in the body. But your hand goes straight through his shirt and he explodes into a cloud of dust, hair, dry bones, and tobacco leaves. Is Crowder real? Was he ever real? Is anything real?
I don’t know, bubba. Time is a flat circle.
PERCENTAGE CHANCE I WOULD DEFEAT HIM IN A FIGHT: 92%
John Cooper from Skillet
The man has not successfully worn sleeves since 1998. He has arguably the biggest biceps in Christian music, although when I tweeted about this issue several people argued that Jeremy Camp’s biceps are bigger. But here’s the thing about Jeremy Camp: he had early-00s Baptist youth pastor highlights, and that feels like a strike against him.
Anyway, the key to defeating John Cooper is to extend the fight. If you can make him work and start to sweat, all that guyliner is going to get in his eyes and he won’t be able to see you. That’s when you make your move. Sure, it might not be the manliest way to win a fight, but all’s fair in CCM, trick.
PERCENTAGE CHANCE I WOULD DEFEAT HIM IN A FIGHT: 47%
You do not have the heart of a champion.
PERCENTAGE CHANCE I WOULD DEFEAT HIM IN A FIGHT: 19%
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