“Voting Amen”

This video is full of the classic fundy salute style of hand-raising. (Can you count them all?)

Raising your hands in fundyland is ok as long as you only use one hand, don’t leave it up for too long, and don’t look like you’re enjoying it too much. Otherwise, it’s Charismatic.

76 thoughts on ““Voting Amen””

  1. I couldn’t listen to the whole thing, but the man on the left hand side in the audience looked like he was “knee slapping” a bit too much. Perhaps he knew he didn’t belong, cause he was “good” after that.

    1. This type of hand-raising would have definitely been discouraged in my church: “don’t you know that the only reason they’re raising their hands is to draw attention to themselves?” (I’m deeply grieved that churches separate from and judge other believers over things like this.)

      Does the guy scratching his head at the beginning AND the end count?

      1. I agree with the principle that it draws attention to oneself. Sometime people can be so over the top, that it does distract from the worship service.

        1. The fact that others are distracted doesn’t mean that the worshipper MEANT to be distracting. That’s confusing motive and result.

          Then again, I’ve seen videos of the kind of “worship” that can go on in some churches. If someone’s distracted by someone singing with hands raised and eyes closed, I’d say he needs to stop being so persnickety and maybe close his eyes himself. But if he’s distracted because people are running up and down the aisles screaming and waving banners, I’d say, yeah, that’s pretty distracting!

        2. That’s true. Hand raising doesn’t bother me. But there are times people are shouting “Amen!” so loud and so often it becomes very distracting and it’s hard for people near them to be blessed by the song. I remember once my husband and I sitting in front of a man who just “amened” loudly through the whole song, shouting practically in my ear. After the song was over the pastor just asked “Brother so and so, was that a blessing to you?” which was nothing more than encouragement to continue that behavior. What if that had been a woman? She’d have been discouraged from drawing attention to herself. 🙁

        3. @mac….etc

          I agree it’s about the heart. Something that always distracts me is the music behind the prayer thing that people do. I don’t necessarily disagree with it, but I think it can trick people into thinking that it was a ‘good’ prayer because of the emotion they felt. It’s the same thing with the change in key at the end of the song in this post. Did you notice they all raised their hands for a few seconds when the key went up an octave? Was that a reaction to the words or the simple science of music?

          Anyway, once when I was teaching in youth group and my friend lead worship, he did the whole music behind the prayer thing and broke my concentration. I told him if he did it again I’d punch him in the name of Jesus.

        4. I have seen some singing in the more BJ churches, where they are drawing attention to themselves by trying too hard not draw attention to themselves. When they look like statues, it becomes so unnatural, that people begin to wonder if they are scared stiff or have some other type of problem that hinders their ability to communicate.

        5. Christians find it as easy as anyone to assume that everyone else should do things just like they do them. We easily confuse unity in essential doctrine and unity in relationship with unity of opinion. Just as individual Christians live differently as they apply God’s Word to their unique situations; yet have essential unity in doctrine and morality with all other Christians, so individual churches will be different and yet should be unified.

          Christ has not made us copies of each other. We are to be unified in our diversity-that is ones of the marks of the Church. Principles are essential, but are to be worked out according the wisdom given by the Holy Spirit in each situation. This implies at least two things:

          1. Not all churches will be organized in the same way, all over the world and throughout history.
          2. Not all churches will be equally wise in how they organize themselves. Associating with other churches of different types is one way to help with this, yet sadly experience tells us that often the less wise a church is, the more unlikely they are to associate with anyone different from themselves.

          This issue goes to the heart: which we aren’t competent to judge. Is the person drawing attention to themselves, drawing attention to the preacher, or trying to glorify the Lord or something else? Sometimes we can make a pretty good judgement on that because the behavior is so extreme. But many times we can’t say for certain. Cultural norms then, do come into play here, and in a multicultural society and church we’re going to have more differences about what is appropriate and what is not than a culturally and racially unified society would. Till then, one person’s reverential quiet will be another person’s spiritual apathy; and one person’s emotive enthusiasm will be another person’s grandstanding.

          But in the end it’s one of those situations where if every worshipper was only concerned to consider others before himself, and at the same time be 100% focused on the God He is worshipping: and everyone around him is determined not to judge except with “righteous judgment,” always give brethren the benefit of the doubt whenever humanly possible, and are also 100% focused on worshipping God, there would be no trouble at all. Unfortunately we can’t experience this till heaven.

        6. fundyfascinated, I’ve been thinking about this ever since you wrote it: ” Did you notice they all raised their hands for a few seconds when the key went up an octave? Was that a reaction to the words or the simple science of music?”

          I think the sound ought to reinforce the words, the science of music supplementing and supporting the message. So if I return to “Then sings my SOUL my Savior, God, to Thee” in a higher key, yes, I might feel moved to respond partly because the music does serve as a prompt. I don’t think that means my feelings are less valid because the music helped stir those feelings. Music is supposed to move us.

          I’m not sure if I’m expressing myself well. I’ve been intrigued by your comment because I’ve heard it before and since I’ve transitioned from a total BJU-style of music, very formal and conservative, to contemporary, I always want to evaluate both the former arguments about music I heard as well as my current beliefs about it.

          Anyway, in the same way when you watch dancers or ice skaters do a leap or a twirl when the music becomes especially passionate, I think it’s OK to also respond physically in worship when the music crescendos because the music is serving the thought and helping us express our love and gratitude to God both intellectually and emotionally.

    2. The guy who started out so enthusiastically in the front row — could he have been the pastor? Sometimes I’ve seen pastors or evangelists “get into” the music but none of us regular church folk were supposed to.

    3. I would tell people who are distracted by hand waving, head movements, or even foot stomping, that they should just get over it. However, I would probably draw the line at running the aisles with a potted tree in one’s arms during a hymn, or running around on the backs of the pews while preaching (both featured in previous installments of SFL).

  2. lame crowd – not a one of them is waving their KJV way up in the air. Amateurs.

  3. I had to watch it with the sound off since it is too early to be waking people up in this manner. I am guessing it was much better this way.

  4. Ok the song could’ve been done better but I liked it. It was catchy. It’s one of the few up times in a fundy church so I’ll take it. Problem is after this enjoyment some fundy preacher’s gonna stand up there and preach for an hour and the joy you got from the singing will be turned into guilt and shame at what a lousy sinner you really are and how disappointed God is in you… 😥

    Let’s just leave after the song service! :mrgreen:

  5. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:28
    So get over your flags, people.

    1. Actually, I do object to the flag of Israel on the right side of the sanctuary. Bad enough to have the flag of the USA on the left hand side.

    1. Heh — in a previous church, the pastor’s wife enjoyed singing songs to saloon-style playing, and she looked like the worldly singers on the television that her husband preached against.

    1. That struck me just the right way resulting in an audible chuckle. Great observation.

  6. I liked the song.

    I liked the spirit with which it was sung.

    But I particularly like the message, and would happily join any group of Christians singing this song.

    I would have been a hand-raiser on this song!

    Liked it so good, listened to it twice, tks Darrell!

    1. Didn’t particularly like the song (maybe because the only words I could make out were “this one thing I know”), but hey, at least they have joy, real joy, wonderful joy… :mrgreen:

  7. Yep, that’s the classic fundy amen vote. Not the charismatic style, very different. Notice the “push out” of the hand after raising it to “toss” the amen out there.

  8. A complete salute is arm up, arm down.
    Horizontal arms, hair patting, sleeve coughing, claping, and song leading don’t count.

    15 salutes.

  9. Personally, I don’t care for hand raising, loud amenning(sp?), or running the aisles. Lets just be honest about how it works in a fundy church. The crowd is supposed to act exactly how the entertainer wants them to act. Substance and sincerity are irrelevant. This is why a fundy preacher tells the crowd to say amen and when to say amen. It is a forced validation on what is going on. Thats what it is.

    1. Nailed it. I don’t see how chasing around an auditorium is honoring to God. I’m uncomfortable with raising hands, but if someone lets me alone, I can leave them alone. My experience has been that *they* judge *me” thusly: Other: “Weren’t you blessed by that? Me: “Yes” Other: “Then why didn’t you lift your hands?”

      1. That’s one reason I’m glad that our auditorium is darkened during the worship time. In general, I prefer bright sunshine and light, but since people are so apt to be distracted by others or worried about what other people are thinking of them, I’m realizing that it’s a good thing that with the lights dim people can hopefully focus on the words and directing their praise to God and be able to stand still or raise hands without others observing and judging either way.

        1. Yes! That’s what our church does as well. Worship is supposed to be between you and God. You shouldn’t be worried about what everyone around you is doing. You should be singing TO God and thinking about Him.

      2. Guilt Ridden, I can’t stand busybodies who demand that everyone respond or react a certain way, ESPECIALLY when it’s in the realm of spiritual things. It’s rude and pushy.

        As wrong as I think the IFB was to limit all physical response to music, it’s just as wrong to insist on a particular response. It’s about the heart not the outward appearance, and it’s between each individual and God. No one else should be commenting. (Unless of course it’s along the lines of, “Dear Brother Jim, I noticed the last time you dashed around the congregation with the Baptist banner that you almost swiped the heads off three old ladies on the end of their left aisle rows. Please swing that flag with more caution next time.”)

  10. That was some awkward hand raising; no doubt about it. What it actually looked like is a bunch of people recognizing someone in the audience and saying high to them.

    “Hey, is that grandma? ::raise hand::: Hi grandma!” ::::lower hand::::

    1. Yeah, you could tell that some people were doing it just because they felt they had to in order to appear “spiritual”, but really didn’t want to. I don’t mind hand raising in church at all, but I don’t like services where people apparently feel obligated to do it, even if that is not how they typically express themselves during worship.

  11. I got an 18 count. Many of them were doubles. The lady in the green on the left almost got one past me with a little ‘shoulder high, don’t get above the head’ point, but I caught it! The guy to the left in the audience was a sneaky one too; knee slaps don’t count so I got a few false alarms from him.

  12. Wow the rural Fundie church template on display. Blood Red carpet is a must, big river mural over the baptistry, big handcrafted bullshittem pulpit with matching “This do in Remembrance of Me” offering plate table, American Flag, Israeli Flag, Bass guitar, piano and organ, big hand crafted, leather covered fullashittem throne chairs on the dais for the pastor and visiting dignitaries. They sure do seem to have the same decor for a group that claims to be so independent.

      1. It’s that shittem wood they talk about in the Old Testament. It makes the best pulpit furniture material.

  13. I counted the Parade Wave, the Auction Bid, the Finger Wag, the Knee Slap, and the Boxing Referee’s Down And Out Count.
    Did I miss any?

    1. You forgot the “who just let one rip” followed by a hand raised two rows ahead.

  14. That was fun. I remember once at HAC when there was a particularly beloved guest speaker, two of the guys were sitting a few rows apart. They stood on the back of the pews to give each other a “KJV high-five”. That was plenty distracting, but also plenty amusing. I guess anything besides that or running the aisles with a plant or a flag can be considered pretty benign. 😎

    1. Forgive my ignorance, what’s a KJV high five? Do they smash their bibles into each other for some reason? If someone uses an NIV, does that contaminate the other person’s KJV?

      1. Yes, that’s exactly what they do – hit their Bibles into each other. In answer to your other question, how on earth would an NIV actually get onto the campus of Hyles Anderson College??! 😯 Surely God would strike that sinner with lightening before they got past the front desk!!!

        1. lol I was actually being sarcastic. I thought of the most literal stupid thing I could think of in a attempt to be funny. Instead, I spoke the truth. Excellent.

    2. Do you remember the woman who used to sing “There Is Coming A Day”? She got a huge positive response from the crowd. I thought otherwise.

      1. Yeah, I remember her. She always got a big response, but she really couldn’t do the song that well. Of course, at HAC, you could put a mule up next to the microphone and everyone would go absolutely nuts. It’s kind of a pavlovian response up there.

        1. I personally didn’t get what the others were going nuts over. I thought she was, um, well, ‘different’.

  15. I seem to have missed the clip of someone running the isles with a potted plant, that sounds special! Link? 😯 😆

  16. Wow Darrell, two days in a row with people I know. This church is in Florida. The Pastor is from my area.
    The man on the base is one of his sons, as is the man leading the singing.
    Good people that are a little zealous, but good people.

    But sometimes it is easier to hate them when we don’t know them. I think I learned something about us today.

    we are jerks.

    1. I will agree that at times, some of us may be jerks. I know I can be one of the best. Hate, though, is a bit strong. I have known some of the people or site owners that have been displayed on SFL. They are [mostly] good people. But even good people are often funny. Even good, well-meaning people can be extreme. That doesn’t mean that laughing at them is hatred.

      These folks today are probably great people, but you have to admit, they look like they could use some help in the fine art of spontaneous worship. It isn’t as wooden as the old Soviet Leader parade wave, but it’s close.

  17. Do the fundies use guitars in their worship services now? That was definately a guitar player on the right. Of course, thankfully we couldn’t hear the guitar at all. But still… appearance of evil and all.

    1. In the South the guitar was never demonized as much as in other parts of the country because the association was with bluegrass/folk/country music instead of rock-and-roll.

      Most Southern fundy churches have no problem with guitars.

      1. And this just shows the whole foolishness of adding man’s rules to God’s Word. Things were banned in some churches while allowed in others, but most of these churches insisted that their standards and theirs alone were MOST holy (and of COURSE you WANT to be the most you can be for God, right? After all, we are to do all to the glory of God so we HAVE to follow these rules to show our commitment.)

        When we who were raised that way grew older and discovered the diversity of churches even in the IFB and as we read God’s Word for ourselves, we grew tired of the narrow provincialism that insisted “only OUR way is holy”, partly because it’s illogical but also because it violates the law of LOVE and liberty in Christ.

      2. And of course it gets really fun in the Southwest, like Arizona. Here, we have mostly people who have come from somewhere else, or at least their parents came from somewhere else. So in some churches the Southern influence is strong, others the Midwest, still others, the northern influence. All depends on where the pastor, deacons, and their families are from. So in some fundy churches, the guitar and hand raising is okay, in others, it is eeeevil. And, like PW said, the churches would insist their standards are holier than others. Craaaazy!

  18. Without the sound on, it looked almost like they were taking attendance through most of the clip. One person’s hand would go up, then down, then another’s hand up, then down. Only toward the end did several people raise their hands at once.
    It also looked like a lady was scratching her armpit toward the end, but maybe that’s because I had the video too small and didn’t see it clearly. 😈

  19. Did they cut out the part where the Hare Krishna guy prances across the stage tapping his tambourine? Or am I thinking of another series?

  20. I remember a few years ago when the Victorious Valley Home for Girls came to our church. As the girls sang, every few seconds one of them would slip their hand up–so briefly and robotically it was humorous. Hands popping up quickly and coming back down just as quickly.

    At the time, I thought the girls seemed much better off than the Hephzibah girls…at least they seemed to be allowed to wear make-up and clothes that weren’t hopelessly frumpy and outdated. But something just still seemed a little “off” to me.

    Later I heard that their leader had fallen in love with one of the girls and left his wife. Sad.

    1. The girl was an adult when they ran off together. She had stayed on at the home and was on staff.
      I posted this somewhere else here on SFL. Anyway, Johnny did leave and take up with the former student turned staff member.

      The problem I have with VV is the religious showcasing of the “success” girls. The ones who have learned their Bible verses, have the compelling testimonies, and can sing. They come in to a church, sing, quote verses, sing, give testimony, sing some more and create a heart stirring emotional service… then ask that church to take them on for support. They also sell their CD’s in the back. $$$$ Perpetual deputation.
      Emotional evangelism *sigh*
      Let’s all gather round the altar and do business with God… right now, come on. By show of hands who will say they need what these girls have here tonight? I see that hand and that hand, hands all over the building. Now who is going to do something about it? You come on down and get right with God here at this altar… right now, don’t wait another minute. *shudder*

  21. “Now when we say ‘loves,’ you raise your hand first Martha. Then as soon as Martha gets her hand down, George you go ahead and git yer arm up…”

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