Monday, April 13, 2009

Everybody wants results but nobody wants to do what they have to do to get them done.

In ministry, you often encounter pragmatism as the motivation for doing things. If it works or gets results, you can't or shouldn't criticize it. In fact, you should probably do it as well ... if you really love Jesus.

This is particularly popular with regard to some sort of activity, event, or spectacle which draws a crowd whereby people are exposed to the Gospel. Surely, we want people to hear the Gospel, if we love Jesus, so whatever gets them in the door or within earshot is "all good."

I came across this via one of my former SWBTS students. (HT Aaron Landis) This was part of the services yesterday at NewSpring Church.

There were criticisms, of course. For example, one comment on the video said:
"Not only is this inappropriate for church, it's mediocre talent. Leave this music to the real pagans. Please don't let these wanna-be pagans do stuff like this anymore."
True, he's no Brian Johnson and that's not Angus Young, but the hat & Harley t-shirt and school boy uniform would have added to the effect.

Yet, one of those in favor of this approach commented:
"This mediocre talent participated in hundreds of people giving there life to Christ in the last two days. What did you accomplish this weekend? With that kind of attitude I doubt you've ever led anyone to Christ. The person who was sitting next to my wife was cheering when they played it. 30 mins latter he was balling as he gave his life to God. Go tell him this sucked! While you're at it. Tell Jesus that it wasn't worth it."

Surely there's a line one should not cross while pursuing noble goals. Right? What's the line? Do you just know it when you see it?

Topless women as greeters might draw a bigger crowd to hear about Jesus, but that's unchartered waters ... for now. I think for most the ends DO justify the means, so that the means might even be perceived as wrong, sinful, or at least inappropriate ... on their own, but for the noble cause, tolerated, heralded, and imitated.

Admittedly, my line is probably further back than than for most, but I fear many buy into the pragmatism prior to establishing a line of their own. In the noble desire to see results, the line is crossed perhaps unaware. You have to respect the line.

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At 14 April, 2009 12:12, Blogger samurai said...

Too often i am like that critic... if someone gives their life to the Lord... how can we not rejoice. Even Paul said that he was all things to all people.

While i agree about the topless women thing... we should keep our minds open to the leading of the Lord. God can, and will, use anything for his glory and His kingdom.

At 14 April, 2009 13:24, Blogger Timothy said...

Every bone of my Reformed body is screaming no! How do we know that many people gave their lives to Christ? We don't. Sure, there may have been lots of people walking the aisles in some emotionally driven call, but to start saying that these thug heads have done more for the kingdom that we have in the past... etc., is pure empty-headed speculation.

Where are the millions who came to Christ because of that cheap trick celluloid called the Passion? Where are they? Remember, we had calls from fundy pastors saying: "You are not a good Christian if you do not see this movie?" Really? Where is Scripture does it say that?

Point is, this was a rock concert instead of true worship. Screaming in a microphone instead of true preaching. Weeping because of cheap emotionalism, instead of baptism and the Lord's Supper. Screaming like teen girls at a Beatles concert instead of real prayer.

Ichabod on that church, their worship and their pragmatism.

At 16 April, 2009 17:58, Blogger Oilcan said...

Does the power of the Gospel really need the extra help of devil music to convert lost souls?

Conversely, how many in the crowd where secretly converted to ACDC?

How many repentant devil worshippers via rock'n'roll were caused to stumble?

At 22 April, 2009 07:16, Blogger Lance said...

The only thing that "works" in conversion is the Holy Spirit, which perhaps explains why so many were converted under the "dry" preaching of little Johnny Edwards.

At 25 April, 2009 15:07, Blogger Reepicheep said...

This performance was a total insult to AC/DC. I couldn't get past that long enough to analyze your question...


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