American Idol and Shout to the Lord

Note:  The videos of both performances are at the end of the post.

Last week on American Idol, the eight finalists joined together at the end of the show to sing the popular praise and worship song, “Shout to the Lord.” The next night, they opened the program with the same song. This created quite a stir for a number of reasons:

  1. The first night they sang it, they substituted the words “My Shepherd” for the original lyrics, which are “My Jesus.”
  2. The second night, they sang the original lyrics, putting the words “My Jesus” back in.
  3. People were surprised that a show like American Idol would feature such an overtly Christian song, twice, especially sung by all the contestants together.

There was a lot of buzz about this around the blogosphere during the week. Here are three articles in particular that I thought covered the story well and provided some good food for thought.

I work on one of the “sister shows” of American Idol … so picture an office, with all of the producers, crew, etc. gathered in watching the live feed at our CBS offices, then this song comes on … an office filled with a few Christians … atheists and agnostic Jews. You could hear a pin drop … it was awesome … the power that came through … nothing had to be said … no debates … just people being touched more than they realized … producers, writers … crew that had never darkened a church door in their lives, or their only experience with Christians was a negative one. You don’t always see the workings of us Christians that are behind the scenes … you don’t know how much prayer went into getting a song with that message on a, let us not forget, a SECULAR show. So, from someone behind the scenes, the best thing you can do is write to the producer of Am. Idol and simply state how much you appreciate the diversity they showed in having an very inspirational song in their program. Period. No criticizing. This will go farther than you realize. Also, pray, pray, pray for us Christians that have chosen Hollywood as our vocation, career and our mission field.

And finally, here are the videos of the two performances so you can check them out for yourself.

First performance (Video length: 2:56)


Second performance (Video length: 3:08)

So, did you see either of these performances last week? What are your thoughts?


  1. Sharon Gamble says:

    I never watch TV, so did not see these shows. The only concern I have, is that AI might expect finalists to sing other religion’s worship songs. No finalist should be asked to sing a song in worship to a god they don’t believe in. If all 8 of these finalists were fine with singing, that’s great!! What a JOY to hear that sung on national TV. But if the end result is, that Christian finalists would be asked to sing a song worshiping another god, or that Muslim finalists would be asked to sing a song to the Lord, against their beliefs…well, then, that would be disturbing. Sounds like everyone who sang it this time was cool with it, so it wasn’t an issue, though!!

  2. Ray Fowler says:

    Hi Sharon – Yes, that would be a concern to watch out for. I know I could not sing a song that worshiped or proclaimed another God. I hope none of the finalists felt compelled to sing something that went against their conscience.

  3. Noah Kauffmann says:

    I see American Idol winner Lee has recently signed up to RCA records. Cannot wait to listen to his upcoming album.

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