Jesus freak

Jesus freak

Jesus freak, while initially a pejorative term for those involved in the Jesus movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s, was quickly embraced by them and soon broadened to describe a Christian subculture throughout the hippie and back-to-the-land movements that focused on universal love and pacifism, and relished the radical nature of Jesus' message. Jesus freaks often carried and distributed copies of the "Good News for Modern Man", a 1966 translation that fit the bill by including only the New Testament in its initial editions, and by being in modern English.

A well-known usage occurs the lyrics of Elton John's song "Tiny Dancer" ("Jesus freaks, out in the street, handing tickets out for God," referring to gospel tracts), and the term has also appeared in Felt's 1986 single "Ballad of the Band." The term has recently been used frequently by Ted Turner and Howard Stern, referring mainly to fundamentalists. Another use of the phrase was in Kevin Michael's song "We All Want The Same Thing": "DJs in the club, Jesus Freaks and thugs, we all want the same thing". Black Sabbath (Ozzy Osbourne) in "Under the Sun" also used the phrase: "I don't need no Jesus Freak to tell me what it's all about".

"Jesus Freak" also appeared as the title of the 1995 album by dc Talk, and that album helped turn the term into more of a compliment. The song says, "What will people think when they hear that I'm a Jesus Freak? What will people do when they find that it's true? I don't really care if they label me a Jesus Freak. There ain't no disguising the truth." TobyMac of dc Talk still uses the term "Jesus Freak" in many songs today, including the line "Where my freaks at? Where my Jesus freaks?" in the song "Wondering Why".

"Jesus Freak" is also the name of many books, most of which are part of a series examining the lives of martyrs. [ [ Jesus freak: Books ] ]


* Di Sabatino, David. "The Jesus People Movement: An Annotated Bibliography and General Resource" (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1999). []


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