Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Why Does This Strike A Chord?
Things are often funny, or at least amusing, becasue they touch on some uncomfortable chord in reality. This video is one of those. I have bee in way too many planning meetings where the discussion was "What do people want out there?" - good question for Wal-Mart - maybe even a good question for a church that wants to grow its attendance figures. But is it a good question for a church that wants to produce growth in its membership and community.
Recently Spengler looked at modern Jewish denominationalism:
There still is a lot of wishful thinking out there. Today’s Jewish Ideas Daily leads with a defense of non-denominational Judaism, under the rubric, “Who Needs Denominations?” Author Yehudah Mirsky wonders whether the Reform and Conservative denominational structure makes sense in today’s world:The point of the post ends up being that Protestant evangelicalism is the problem - it sets the tone for American Jewish expression and that in Israel - Orthodoxy is the fastest growing denomination. That's not a good thing from my perspective.If one feature of modern life is the ascendance of reason and science as sources of knowledge and authority, another is expressiveness, the conviction that the truth is to be found in one’s own subjectivity and in the recesses of one’s own experience and passions. This impulse, helped along by new technologies and forms of organization that make for more diffuse structures of authority and belief, and by currents like feminism that link the expressive ideal with the demand for equality, has powerfully reworked all of contemporary religion. In Western societies today, even the most stringent form of traditionalism is chosen; if it does not find an echo in the subjective experience of the individual, it will not long endure.In short, Rabbi Mirsky thinks that in the modern world every Jew will make up her or her own Judaism to suit “the subjective experience of the individual,” in a free-form sort of organization that allows for such things.
But back to the video for a minute. As I write, I am in the process of deciding what new smart phone to get. They keep trying to sell me crap I don't want. I do not need an 18th place to watch a movie - I DO need a device that enhances my communication abilities and helps me organize my activity. In this day and age, the genuine functionality of the device is buried so deep in its guts that the sales people often do not know where to find it.
That;s why the video is amusing - the reality is our sales people are selling everything BUT the gospel.