An Open Letter To Madonna

Dear Madonna,

This morning's headlines scream that you want to be Jesus. According to Madonna wants to 'be Jesus' in an on-line magazine named Tonight, you are making a claim that is . . . well, pretty absurd. The magazine says:

The controversial singer - who infuriated Christian church leaders by performing while hung from a cross wearing a crown of thorns during her Confessions world tour - wants to be worshipped as a spiritual leader.

But EntertainmentWise, in an article entitled Madonna: I'm Like Gandhi, Lennon, Luther King AND Jesus, you didn't seek to be worshipped. Instead, you only want to be like Jesus in the way that you have an impact on the world.

The amazingly deluded pop star told American radio station Sirius she sees herself up there with the most inspirational figures of the Twentieth Century -- as well as Jesus.

She said, "For me, the best thing in the world is to see something or hear something and go, 'Damn, I wish I did that. That's inspiring.' I'd like to think I am taking people on a journey. I am not just entertaining people, but giving them something to think about when they leave."

When asked about her controversial appearance on a Crucifix as part of her Confessions World Tour last year she answered, "We all need to be Jesus."

(By the way, the reference to you as an "amazingly deluded pop star" is from the magazine -- not from me.)

It seems to me that what you are saying has been taken a number of different ways, and I assume (maybe wrongly) that the interpretation by Tonight is not what you intended (as evidenced by the fact that they don't quote you as saying that you want to be worshipped, but merely write that into the article). Certainly, since you were raised Christian (I have heard repeatedly that you were raised Roman Catholic) you must understand that if God exists (as I and many millions of others assert) then it is the height of megalomania to claim that you are the one to be worshipped instead of God. For that matter, it is equally bad to assert that you should be worshipped at all. After all, in Revelations 22, the Apostle John falls down at the feet of an angel to worship him, and the angel corrects him by saying that we should not worship our fellow created beings, but worship God. So, I am hopeful that Tonight has it wrong.

The quotes in EntertainmentWise seem more admirable. I think that all people should strive to be like Jesus. Certainly, as a Christian pastor, Martin Luther King, Jr., followed Jesus (albeit imperfectly). To that end, if you are stepping up and saying that you want to be a person who makes a positive impact for good in the world, then you and I are more alike than I would have thought.

But I think that is where the similarity ends. You see, one thing that you seem to reveal in your statements to EntertainmentWise is a measure of self aggrandizement. You say you want people to look at what you have done and say "Damn, I wish I did that," but that isn't what Jesus did. What made Jesus so great (on top of that whole being the Son of God thing) is that Jesus didn't do these things to bring honor upon Himself, but to bring glory to the Father. Martin Luther King, Jr., didn't do things to bring glory to himself, but to do the will of God. Gandhi didn't do things to bring glory to himself, but because it was part of his religious convictions. As near as I can tell, you aren't doing this for anything more than to bring glory on yourself.

Am I wrong? Are you really wanting to demonstrate love for your fellow human beings in what you do? I find that hard to believe when you choose to offend people by hanging yourself on a cross as part of your show. You can say that it's artistic to drive home the point that we should be like Jesus, but you in doing so you should recognize that what you are doing is seen as offensive and derisive by many people. To proceed to hang yourself on the cross knowing that it will "p**s people off" (as you say) is hardly "loving" of your neighbor, is it?

Still, I want to encourage you to be like Jesus, but not in the way that you seem to be suggesting. Being like Jesus isn't simply to make people think or to impress them so that they want to do what you do, but to change their lives in a way that brings them closer to the Father. To be like Jesus means trying to do the will of the Father in love, loving the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, and loving your neighbor as yourself. Do these things and you will really make an impact and it will be a more positive impact than the one that you have made thus far.

In Christ,


BK said…
Well, Michael, I guess you must be thinking of a different person that I am because the Madonna who is famous and makes all those records doesn't, to my knowledge, even claim to be a Christian let alone act in accordance with the Bible.
G.M. Grena said…
I kid you not--the top news story on local TV today here in L.A. was "Britney's New Look Is Bald". An update on the war came about 5 minutes into the broadcast. Something about a few of our brave soldiers getting killed (though the reporter omitted the word "brave"; I'm sure it was on the teleprompter & they simply overlooked it). No video of them getting killed, so the report only lasted about 30 seconds. Naturally, it had been preceded by an update on Anna Nicole's body (editors love cute segues), which lasted over a minute since they had good footage of the morgue where the autopsy had been performed. By the way, I was surprised that they didn't make any announcement last week on whether or not they found a brain in her skull. Anyway, apparently Britney & Madonna have started getting jealous of Anna Nicole's rotting flesh getting all this attention.
BK said…
G.M. Grena,

Yes, the state of popular news is very sad. I find myself ignoring any stories about Brittney, Anna Nicole, Paris, Lindsay, Tom Cruise, and any of the other number of "stars" who seem to fascinate the public so much that what they do is too often featured (if not on the front page) early in my newspaper. Excellent comment!

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