Tuesday, May 17, 2011

What Does God Think of Entertainment?

A gift. A tool.A trap. It's all part of the world we minister in.

Are churches more interested in entertaining people and drawing crowds than in actually doing the work of worship? Last Sunday in our weekend service, I posed just this question to Justin Bieber, who was guest leading a worship set after Siegfried and Roy made an actual lion lie down with an actual lamb to launch our new series: "What Happens in Shalom Stays in Shalom."

Okay, we didn't really do that. But the demands of cranking out services and sermons are intense. We are trying to edify people who already attend our churches as well as reach people who don't attend any church. The sheer pressure of doing that week after week can keep us from stepping back to ask what we are really trying to achieve.

Add to this the unbearably weighty realization that we are somehow doing this to please God. (We often talk about doing all this "for an audience of One," but if you end up with no one else in the audience, you probably won't keep doing this very long.)

Chuck Fromm expressed the struggle like this: "How can we make sure ever-changing technology serves our worship of the never-changing God rather than becoming an object of worship? And how can we use it soundly in the service of the Lead Worshiper and High Priest of our confession, Jesus?"

So let's look at some questions to help us develop what might be called a practical theology of entertainment.

To read more, click here.

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