You’ll need to watch this circus and read about the racket to know what I’m responding to: http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2014/10/14/city-houston-demands-pastors-turn-over-sermons/
I’m sorry…but as much as I would like to avoid sharing this this article/video only to comment on it in the way I feel is necessary, the fact that it is ‘trending’ with a hootin’ and hollerin’ and gunz-a-blazin’ sentiment is somewhat troubling to me. As I mentioned in comments regarding this post on a friend’s newsfeed, my concern is not what the government might do–and inevitably will eventually do–to silence the Church. My concern is what the Church will do in an effort not to be silenced: the alliances we will seek, the compromises we will make, the witness we will give as a Church that has forgotten how to exist without any access to power, forgotten how to speak of its Lord when speaking of its Lord becomes a costly prospect. I hate to point out the obvious implication of worshiping a risen Lord who was crucified before he was risen, but if we have forgotten how to be a powerless Church, then we have forgotten how to be a cross-bearing Church; and if that, what exactly have we remembered?
And regarding the video in the link, I hope I am not the only one who sees something wrong with the fact that the first collection of evidence cited as relevant data for measuring Christian vitality in America was the amount of revenue so-called Christian movies had generated in Hollywood. The assumption, I suppose, is that by describing a movie as “Christian,” as though there is such a thing, the numbers it produces will provide a roughly accurate measurement of people in America who are committed to following Christ. But that is like using the recent sales numbers from Slim-Fast to provide a measurement of people in America committed to losing weight. It’s not that the supply doesn’t correspond accurately to the demand. It’s just that the supply doesn’t correspond accurately to the advertising claims. The success of the one depends on the unhealthiness of the other. I can’t help but wonder if the capacity for Christianity to generate revenue and become popular by conforming to Hollywood’s entertainment standards reflects not an increase in Christian vitality but either a decrease in Hollywood’s entertainment standards or an increase in prostituting out the word “Christian” to bedfellows of all sorts.
I probably wouldn’t feel so strongly about this had I not read it against statistics that consist of what some might call relevant data–like biblical literacy, divorce rates in the Church, belief statements of self-identifying Christian adolescents, etc. But apparently while Kevin Sorbo’s popular god of Hollywood is alive and well, the One with that antiquated message about a narrow gate and a wooden cross is still dying a slow and shameful death–and so are His followers.