“T.D. Jakes vs. Jeezy” by Jay Julien

So, I wake up one morning and all over my newsfeed, twitter, and favorite blogs are articles about T.D Jakes suing Jeezy over using a portion of his sermon without permission. My first reaction was “that makes sense” and “I saw that coming”. But does it make sense? From a business perspective I understand intellectual property. But from a spiritual perspective, how can your sermons be inspired by God and be your intellectual property at the same time? It’s either your property or it’s God’s. And if it is truly God’s can you really sue someone for using God’s property?

Another thought that I had was that this is the perfect opportunity to reach out to artists like Jeezy or Kendrick Lamar, who was the featured artist on the track. If your job as a minister is to draw people closer to God you don’t do that by suing them! Jeezy’s song Holy Ghost introduced millions of people to T.D Jake’s voice, name, and message that is apparently his intellectual property. I dont see what T.D Jakes gains from suing Jeezy. To me it looks like a publicity stunt. Is Jakes selling an album? Is he taking a page out of 50 Cent’s book?

Jakes may not agree with how Jeezy used his sermon or even the fact that he did it without permission, but it is decisions like this that separate Godly wisdom from worldly wisdom.We aren’t supposed to conform to the ways of the world. But what exactly does that mean? Where do we draw the line? At the very least this story was entertaining and creates an opportunity to talk about how to handle business as a Christian, and opens up a discussion about intellectual property as a Christian.

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2 Comments

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  1. I completely agree with this post. If TDJ is truly trying to encourage people to have a relationship with Christ, he should’ve been glad/confused (not knowing whether to feel complimented or offended). That meant that someone listened to his sermon, even if only in part, in order to include it in the song. It means someone who typically wouldn’t have heard the word of God did via Jeezy and possibly went in depth about the sermon through Rap Genius. I think any Christian, no matter how big or small their public image is, should be glad that the word got spread.

    He should’ve reached out to Jeezy to thank him and give the possible missing context to the message. It may have been just what Jeezy needed. A relationship could begin and who knows what great things that could lead to, not just Jeezy, but TDJ too. Once again, Jeezy’s audience and following isn’t TDJ’s what if he was able to connect with those people through this one sermon sample.

    I am by no means a Jeezy or a T.D. Jakes fan, but it seems like a missed opportunity due to thinking with a business mind not a spiritual mind…… Actually, not even a business mind, that would be great for TDJ’s business.

  2. Great post @jayjulien and I agree with your comments as well @tecknicolor. TD jakes is missing a huge opportunity. I heard someone once say that T.D. Jakes is a business man that uses the Christian undertone to make his millions. The same could be said Jeezy and other rappers who use religious sacrament to make a song “cool” or controversial. They both know what presses your buttons or gets you going. In the end, I think we know who has the final say (The BIG GUY up there), but in my opinion it Jakes passed up an opportunity to have a #freelunch with another business colleague.

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