Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Roaring Lambs

Something happened last week that is in no way a common occurrence for me. I started and finished a book on the same day. The book? "Roaring Lambs" by Bob Briner. The main point of the book is that we as Christians have done a poor job at influencing culture. Here are a couple key points that resonated with me.
  • "Despite all the fancy buildings, sophisticated programs and highly visable presence, it is my contention that the churchis almost a non-entity when it comes to shaping culture."
  • "We have created a phenomenal subculture with our own media, entertainment, educational system and political heirarchy so that we have the sense that we're doing a lot. But what we;ve really done is create a ghetto that is easily dismissed by the rest of society."
  • [Regarding the church's tendency to push people to traditional missionary work] "It's almost as if we believe God is strong enough to take care of his own only as long as they stay within the safety of the Christian ghetto." [ie: traditional missionary work in a 3rd world country]
  • "Participating in a boycott of the products of companies sponsoring trashy television programs might make us feel good and righteous, but it has very little to do with being the salt of the world."
  • "Sitting in the pews, wringing our hands about decay in the world is not being salt."
  • "The best way to stop the spread of evil is to replace it with something good."
  • "Being salt does not always mean we "evangelize," but by replacing evil with good we enhance the climate for evangelism."
  • "There are so few Christians in the Hollywood film industry, can we blame the movie makers for the errors when they try to portray religious faith."
  • "We have the movie morality ministries to keep score for us, but we do not have the writers to change the score in our favor."
  • "It is very unfortunate that the only efforts organized by Christians to affect mainstream tv have been negative and reactionary."
  • "The most damaging disservice the blasters and boycotters do to the cause of Christ is that it distracts Christians and drains financial support from any positive effort to bring the real salt of the gospel to bear on the medium."

Some challenging words! As a person who loves pop culture and media, this book was particularily challenging to me. I highly recommend taking a look at it if you get the chance.

My next book? "The Irresistable Revolution" by Shane Claiborne.