Christian no more?

Jules over at Everyday Mommy is asking us to think again. Doesn't she know that I don't have to think until 16 January? Oh well. I cannot vouch for the thoughtfulness of my thoughts this evening, but she is asking about something which I have been pondering myself the last few months.
In question are these videos from Community Christian Church near Chicago. They are a parody of the Mac vs PC commercials of late, and I must say that the production quality is top-notch. For me, the tone is what is troubling. I much prefer this response. But I digress.
Jules has four questions for us, and I will attempt to answer each.

1) How is the Christian portrayed versus the Christ follower?
Well, the obvious answer here is that the Christian is cast in a negative light. At the end, however, the Christ Follower allows himself to be caught up is the snarky childishness of the exchange. More thoughts on this in the coming questions.

2)What message is the video attempting to convey about those people who call themselves Christian?
I think this is the root of the matter. These videos are not about people who identify themselves as Christian as much as they are about people who somehow think that being a Christian means that they must only listen to a certain type of music, or only watch certain television shows, or read certain books. The kind of Christian who uses the Christian telephone directory to find a Christian barber, you know who I mean? (This is not to say that I do not support Christian business owners, but I do think that if you have to advertise with a fish or cross on your business cards, you might not be the kind of witness you ought.) I watched the Christian no More videos on the church's website, and i must say that I didn't alway agree with the pastor's point. However, I was raised in a Christian home, in moderately conservative churches, and had positive experiences. Many people do not have that benefit. Many people grew up in churches where they were trained instead of taught. Many people have painful memories and associations with "church." Are these people any less worthy of the Gospel than I am? Of course not! In reading the statement of beliefs on the church's website, I find that I am nodding my head more than I am shaking it. So their approach is not what I need, that's the beauty of it.

3) What audience is the video attempting to reach?
Oops. I think that my last answer bled over in this one.

4) Is this a case of semantics?
I hope so. Unfortunately, there are too many people out there who identify themselves as Christians who are not is real relationship with Christ, following Him. I do think that Christ Followers is a way to remove some baggage, but the term is acquiring its own baggage along the way. What will we become next? What will we call ourselves when "Christ Follower" carries connotations for which we are unprepared? More importantly, when will we quit squabbling about names and begin to live out His example?

Ok, long post and all. Perhaps a little muddled, but it is mine.



EverydayMommy said…
I think the girl has her Thinking Cap on!
Neil said…
Good points. There is a local exterminator that makes a big deal of being a "Christian" company (maybe it is). But we often ask what this means . . . does he pray over the bugs before he kills them?).

I saw parts of those videos. Perhaps they started off as well-intentioned ways to get people to think about how they come across as Christians and about what is really important. But they tend to come off as mean spririted and counterproductive.

My sister and I used to work for a "Christian" owned business. It kind of soured us, quite frankly. We wondered how they could, in good conscience, sit in their pew Sunday mornings when they treated their employees so shabbily the other six days each week.

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