Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson with Bruno Mars is currently the number one song in America. The lyrics for this track can be reviewed here.
The song begins with, “This hit / That ice cold / Michelle Pfeiffer / That white gold / This one, for them hood girls / Them good girls / Straight masterpieces / Stylin’, while in / Livin’ it up in the city / Got Chucks on with Saint Laurent / Got kiss myself I’m so pretty.” What? No really, what is this nonsense lyrics? They’re talking about good girls/hood girls and how they (the people singing, not the hood girls) are looking fine. One part is complimentary to how they’re writing for someone else. The other is arrogance. Let’s see if the arrogance theme continues.
The song continues, “I’m too hot (hot d***) / Called a police and a fireman / I’m too hot (hot d***) / Make a dragon wanna retire man / I’m too hot (hot d***) / Say my name you know who I am / I’m too hot (hot d***) / Am I bad ’bout that money / Break it down.” I’m hot. I’m good looking. Call the fire department cause I’m on fire. That’s what they’re saying. That’s arrogance on display. The Bible speaks clearly to the fact that arrogance is not a virtue (1 Samuel 2:3). Thinking highly of yourself is criticized over and over in the Bible (Proverbs 16:5, Proverbs 26:12, Romans 12:3). You should not boast in yourself, but in the Lord (Jeremiah 9:23-24, 1 Corinthians 1:31). Those who put themselves on this pedestal, loving themselves, are fooling themselves. They are lying to themselves about their position.
The next part is the repetitive chorus which, I won’t go on repeat, but basically says, “Girls hit your hallelujah (whuoo) / ‘Cause Uptown Funk gon’ give it to you / Don’t believe me just watch (come on).” Now, what are they gon’ give to you? Is it sex? Cause if so, they best be married to that lady. I have said it once and I’ll say it over and over as I listen to popular music: sex was designed for marriage (Genesis 2:24, 1 Corinthians 7:8-9). Period. If you’re using your uptown funk to get with the ladies, you’re not looking for Biblical marital sex. A subtle, doo woppy promotion of hook up culture.
Continuing on the lyrics go, “Stop / Wait a minute / Fill my cup put some liquor in it / Take a sip, sign a check / Julio! Get the stretch! / Ride to Harlem, Hollywood, Jackson, Mississippi / If we show up, we gon’ show out / Smoother than a fresh jar of skippy.” Basically – let’s get drunk and show off cause we’re awesome. Getting drunk is not promoted in the Bible (Proverbs 20:1, Isaiah 5:22, Ephesians 5:18). Idolizing your cool physical possessions is also not Biblical (Ecclesiastes 2:4-11, Ecclesiastes 5:10-11, Matthew 6:24, Luke 16:13). And we’ve already spoken briefly to bragging and self love which is based in arrogance.
This repetitive, but catchy tune has a pretty straight forward core message – I’m awesome. The power of me. My uptown funk is going to make it happen. Me centric-ness is a problem overall in our culture. We see it in the books we read. We see it in the extensive self-help television programs people watch. We see it in the way people interpret the Bible. We see it in the way people approach faith. We see it in music and all other mediums. The truth, however, is different from the fiction we create for ourselves.
We are not awesome. We are broken, flawed creations marked for death since the beginning of time when our ancestors decided they knew better than God. We like all who came before us are sinners. We are not too hot and need to call the fireman. We’re broken and in need of rescue. We are fallen and in need to be picked up. That’s where Christ comes in. He lifts us up and gives us the righteousness we don’t deserve, unmerited grace. We don’t need to save ourselves – we can’t. We need Jesus.