Christian gospel music: Assur? Discouraged? Would there be a difference in how clearly the lyrics are associated with Yashka?
The Shulchan Aruch 142-15 writes that it is forbidden to listen to the music of avodah zara, because t is considered deriving benefit from the avoda zara. Therefore it is assur to gospel music, and it is not merely discouraged. This is even if you don’t hear the lyrics clearly, it still benefiting from the music of avoda zara. If someone is waking past a church and he does not want to hear the music but he can’t help it, even though he hears the music it is permitted, but this doesn’t apply not when the person has interest in hearing the music.