Coldplay - knowing God - John Van Sloten

November 02, 2008

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Media @ New Hope CalgaryIn this message continue our music series by looking at the band Coldplay (the band in general this week and the song Viva la Vida next Sunday).

ďThe bad songs come from me and my knowledge of how to write songs, and the good ones come from somewhere ó I have no idea where. And they tend to be sort of flying around at about 2:00 in the morning. You just have to be there to catch it.
That's how I feel about the good ones.
Coldplayís Chris Martin in The Jesus of Uncool, Rolling Stone interview, June 2008

ďEverything of man... must have been of God first." So what the poet "creates" he really only "finds." The patterns are already present in the mind of God, awaiting our discovery...Ē
Dr. Trevor Hart re: Rev. George McDonald, in Books & Culture, Issue 86, April 2005)

ďAt their most truly prophetic, prophets speak things, that my guess is, even they themselves did not entirely understand, because they are things that are of truth itself, rather than of particular truths. Truth itself, which cannot finally be understood, but only experienced. It is the experience that they stun us with. Speaking it out in poetry which transcends all other language in its power to open the doors of the heart. The man of sorrows acquainted with grief.... Who can put a word to him and who needs to? They simply hold him up to our gaze and then at their utmost, at their most poetic and powerful, they do not say something as much as they make something happen."
Frederick Beuchner, page 21, Gospel as Fairy Tale

"And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days. I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD. And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved;Ē
The prophet Joel 2:28-32, NIV

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February 21, 2016
This makes my Spirit joyful ! God does use musicians to sing to us and us to Him :) I can Imagine . I have that Child like Faith That Earth is the Lords and Fullness there of and They that dwells within. Amen <3
Levi Campbel (via YouTube)
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August 30, 2013
I forgot to breath for 9:46 minuites ! So this is the truth I always think in myshelf lke this man . Just 5 minuites listening to coldplay and you think you are in paradise , like you're flying and then you go to the church and say thanks god for my life for coldplay who helped me in mine among with You . I 'll never forgot you both ! you are helped so much in my life you can't imagine . You cheered me up when I was uspet and you helped to keep me being happy since Octomber !
Ismini Er (via You Tube)
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November 24, 2012
more Alltheist and see all forums of fans to Coldplay what speak people ? So because he believes that the man and woman are like the church of God creation Adam and Eve said that the church is the woman in the Bible. and he wrote the passion of Chris-t as the Song of Songs. in Viva La Vida, Moses, Yes, Chinese sleep Chant , Reign of Love... and not the church religions sects = community by humans but not God is war of religions .God is in everything is Love spirit sex. first commandment
Lory Chris
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June 17, 2012
Well if Chris is a "Alltheist" that believes in everything he will find out that he loves God because God is everything and is in everything. God is omnipresent.
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May 25, 2012
the two favorite things in my life as well... God and Coldplay... Chris Martin is the greatest songwriter of our time

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February 06, 2012
Live after the Spirit, that is the only way to KNOW God. The bible is the mark of the beast.
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November 27, 2011
Ah. How I love Coldplay.. so smooth and they go with the Groove. They sing what they think and not what they see. They speak to you, and they speak to me. But does god envibe them with what they think? no oh no. It's just them being who they are and using their minds to create something that we all can love, for who needs a god to make beautiful thing's happen. "Isn't it enough to see that the Garden is beautiful" ~ Sincerely an Atheist.

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November 25, 2011
@Mrgameproof why is it satans voice? He also just said something that was strange ...that bob dylan gets his songs from God? but i seen an interview where he said he sold his soul to the devil..... and there are a ton of musicians get their inspirations from demonic influence
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August 23, 2011
Sorry for the other comment but GOD talks to you in diferent ways LIKE THIS Band
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August 22, 2011
I don't believe in God but I love Coldplay. And Chris Martin is a self-proclaimed "Alltheist". He believes in everything.
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August 22, 2011
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August 15, 2011
where can i join the church of coldplay :D
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June 01, 2011
Get out of this church and flee for your life. It's not preaching the Gospel.
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May 20, 2011
Nobody needs a god. Believe in yourselves before you believe in anything that doesn't exist.
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December 11, 2010
Jesus people, God isn't real!!!!!

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October 25, 2010
Viva la Vida is about the French revolution. Check out the front cover of that CD. I think mainly about Napolean, who almost ruled the world. "I know St. Peter wont call my name," talks about Napolean knowing he wont get into heaven because of what he did. Martin said he likes to write songs about history and junk, and sometimes will write personal fix you, which he wrote for his wife, Gwyneth Paltrow, after her dad died.
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September 30, 2010
Don't they have a song that says "I know St. Peter won't call my name" ?!
Real Christians know where they're going. And when Chris Martin he says the "good" (meaning popular!) songs don't come from him, that means he is channeling devils! Take a look at Carlos Santana in "Hells Bells 2" for evidence of this.

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September 28, 2010
Coldplay really rock love them <3
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September 08, 2010
gracious this is silly. those quotes are fine but when you draw the attention soley to man's words and accomplishments without ever giving His side or His words then you've missed the point. God's name is merely thrown in there to give appearances of relevance. This artsy fartsy approach will kill you if you're not careful. have to agree with the below post
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August 06, 2010
not one bible verse? what kind of church is this...?

That is trouble when we shorten videos for youtube, in order to get the whole message please view the full version on

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July 12, 2010
The only two things that matter to me in life are God and Coldplay too absolutly, but I laughed out loud when he was reading the lyrics in such a bleak voice. lol

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June 30, 2010
Love the way you teach! I love Coldplays music & you happen to use the song Fix You in the sermon....You got my attention, awesome sermon! Thanks

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June 24, 2010
interesting so I would like to think Chris was truely inspired by God, I do love their music & it does make my spirit happy & gives me hope when I am down. Cool!

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June 10, 2010
Referring to Coldplay specifically, I don't see how any of this has to do with religion. It seems like you're saying about Chris Martin's quote that because he doesn't know where the 'good ones come from' that they must come from god. I've heard tons of interviews from Chris Martin and he never really speaks of 'god' as he likes to keep his private life and his music separate. I think what he's trying to say is that creative bursts come to him at random times. No specific connection to 'god'.

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April 19, 2010
Chris Martin says a lot of things like that. In that interview alone you could probably find at least 2 inappropriate comments. Just the way he is. I have seen practically every coldplay interview I can find, and Chris Martin isn't exactly the perfect role model if you only watch interviews. His music is still magical and beautiful though. I love him and coldplay.
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April 10, 2010
coldplay believe in A GOD but are probably considered agnostic rather than christian
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April 04, 2010
I really love Jesus, and i adore Coldplay... But to preach on it? Not so much
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April 02, 2010
What do you think about this Chris expression?:

In the current Rolling Stone, Chris Martin of Coldplay offers his thoughts on faith.

"How can you look at anything and not be overwhelmed by the miraclelousness of it? Everything from the carpet to your nose to my balls is amazing. In fact, my balls are a particular miracle."

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March 31, 2010
I love coldplay, they make me smile everyday. Even on days when I am sad and crying. But this gave me a new perspective on their music and everything else also. I wouldn't say that I am a very religious person, but this pastor did open my eyes more. thank you.
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March 27, 2010
i had a moment almost identical to yours, except it was to a thunderstorm late at night. great song and band
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March 14, 2010
I heard that ColdPlay are Christian is that true?
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January 29, 2010
God blessed Coldplay.

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January 16, 2010
um no. "God" or someone that has not been proven to exist shouldnt be credited for art. Coldplay has been my heart and soul for a VERY long time but i believe that art is by four artists called Chris Martin, Guy Berryman, Johnny Buckland, and Will Champiion. I do not believe in God and i have my own reasons for that. I do not believe there is a man in the sky putting himself in other peoples art...

Really? come on. This is reality and all the credit goes to the HUMANS who created it. God can be used as a symbol for goodness and i agree coldplay has put goodness into their songs. Also, art is meant to be perceived in more thatn one way so im glad it made her feel happier but i would never credit "God" or religion for coldplay's amazing talent

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January 08, 2010
First off, thank you for posting this video. Sudden revelations and understanding was revealed in the 9:46 of truth.
Never before have I realized what the song 'Yellow' is about. I always knew Chris Martin understood God and His power, love, etc. but this really opened my eyes. I can't exactly explain it via the internet, but honestly, this video really touched me.
Thank you.

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November 29, 2009
This music is not made by god , but by a brilliant song writer, chris martin. Not all that is good or bad can be explained by creation of god but should be credited to people who actually do or make it.. in my opinion anyway.

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November 27, 2009
I'm not too religious but this video was brilliant

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October 08, 2009
Coldplay is my favorite band :) and this actually made a lot of sense to me. I'm not all that religious but I like the explanation of good songs and poetry just floating around there waiting for us to catch it. I thoroughly enjoyed this :).

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October 04, 2009
He means a child who lost their parent to suicide.

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August 31, 2009
This is the most ridiculous, theologically incorrect message I have ever heard in a Christian church. I would even go so far as to say this is heretical. God moves in our lives through Scripture or his Holy Spirit.

I love Coldplay's music, and there may be some spiritual influence in it, but God speaks far more eloquently, powerfully and precisely through the Bible than he does through Coldplay. Rely on Scripture, not a person's lovey dovey showtunes!

Oct. 24, 2009
maybe this will help, part of New Hope's and Pastor John Van Slotens vision statement.
"New Hope believes that God's truth in the bible and His truth in creation complement and enhance one another.
It is only by studying both books together that we can begin to understand His vast love. "

By no means do we want to do away with scripture, but we have come to recognize that God hasn't given up on the world and is part of all of our culture, weather we acknowledge it or not.
Keith for NHC

Oct. 26, 2009
bhamcubfan has replied to your comment on Coldplay - knowing God:
I agree with most of that Keith, especially the fact that God has not given up on the world and is active in it today. However I think you're elevating the importance of culture and putting it on the same level as Scripture.

I also wonder what this Pastor believes "CHRISTIANITY is really about." Who was Jesus? Why should I be a Christian?

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August 15, 2009
I do not like organized religion one bit. But individual faith I am all for.
Fix You is an amazing song. Chris Martin wrote it for his wife Gwyneth Paltrow when her father died.
Coldplay is my life, not God. Maybe one day that will change. But if one day do start to believe in God, I will not define myself as a "christian" or other. I will not be apart of a fear based religion.
Coldplay is what I love unconditionally, and THAT will never change.

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July 16, 2009
I love Jesus. But there is something about Coldplay's lyrics that relate to life experiences. Only Jesus can "Fix Us".

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July 09, 2009
I have to say that Fix You, and Yellow have got to be two of my favorite songs Of All Time :DDD

I absolutley love Coldplay :]]]

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May 18, 2009
coldplay is the greatest. to bad this guy talking ruins the lyrics of fix u

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March 12, 2009
A song on the radio is the least he can do to subsidise the loss of a parent in childhood to suicide.

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February 11, 2009
thank you so much for the video "coldplay knowing God" ..I' ve always found some spirituality in their lyrics.

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November 11, 2008
i love God and coldplay. God alot more though
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November 11, 2008
you should check out "swallowed in the sea", "A message" he wrote it based on a hymm that he use to here at his dads church, and "God put a smile on your face"

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November 04, 2008
Hi John - I struggled with whether I should send this email, but here I am - nervous and wondering who am I to question you. I think I missed something last Sunday and I was hoping you could help me out. I normally leave New Hope feeling inspired and renewed and very grateful that I "found" this Church. Unfortunately, I felt flat and confused after leaving last Sunday and I hope you can help me understand what your message was. I felt as though the focus was on Coldplay, and not on God. Maybe I'm not mature enough in my Christian walk to "get it"? I felt as though you were saying God is in everything; however, I don't understand how he's in a song written by a man who has said that he isn't sure about the existence of God, saying "I'm always trying to work out what 'He' or 'She' is," also saying "I don't know if it's Allah or Jesus or Mohammed or Zeus. But I'd go for Zeus."

It also bothered me to hear from your emails (with Chelsea I believe) which, if I remember correctly, said something along the lines of "Oh - God and Coldplay - my 2 favorite things." I'm sure she doesn't really value them the same, but the statement bothered me. Can you explain? Not sure how I feel about this being "posted" as it's very personal to me - but I'll leave that up to you if you think it could help others. Thanks John - I really appreciate it.

Nov. 5, 2008
Hey Peggy,
Thanks for sending the note. Always feel free to question me/us. J

Reading it over, part of thinks this is way to big a question to answer within an email. But hereís a brief response.
First off, the focus was on Coldplay AND on God. The two are not mutually exclusive in New Hopeís mind. God made the band; each member in his image (according to the book of Genesis). As musicians they reflect a bit of who God is, how he thinks, what he feels (whether they know it or not, or believe in him or not). When they speak/sing truth, they speak/sing Godís truth. When they produce beauty, itís Godís beauty. When they positively influence a life, itís Godís positive influence. Theologian John Calvin once wrote, ďAll truth is inspired by the Holy SpiritĒ Reading that excerpt (on Sunday) from Acts on the coming of the Spirit on ALL people reinforced that fact.

So Sunday, the idea was that we would communicate something of the nature of God THROUGH Coldplay. This band is part of a world that belongs to God. Coldplay belongs to God. The hope and desire is that people see God in behind the artist, or the tune. This assumption is in-behind all we do when we engage culture in this way.

Weíve been doing this (and explaining it) for years. Iíve learned that it takes a while for people to see or catch on to the idea. Itís a bit abstract but itís also very powerful.

As a Christian church we believe that Christ really did resurrect, and he did send his Spirit into the world, to be his presence, and that that Spirit blows where it wills, in the stories of the Bible and in the stories of today, both inside and outside of the church, through believers and non-believers.

In a nutshell thatís why we do what we do. We believe that Jesus is still speaking parables, through the songs we hear, the films we watch, the science we study, the architecture we inhabit, the nature that surrounds us, the art we create, etc...

Big vision. Big view of God. What do you think?

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Joel 2:28-32,music,rock,cold play

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