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Discussion Forum : General Topics : Is The Shack symptomatic of a deeper issue?

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 Re: Frank

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But for the most part , it is Godless entities sharing some elements of truth with the mass Godless. If they secular world looked at Christendom with the same eye as some look at them, then they would see a world of division and infighting and lack of love and schism. Sad, for the most part Christendom is no witness at all unless it is a witness to disunity. That is the greatest problem of them.
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Brother I agree with your observation.

Bro Blaine

 2017/3/7 9:49
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 6165
NC, USA

 Re:

I did not mean to de-stress the absolute value of oral preaching.

I simply wanted to point out that by necessity no other means could even be mentioned in scripture due to the time it was written.

If Paul was writing today he might say something like "may your social media posts bear the fragrance of Christ."


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Todd

 2017/3/7 9:55Profile
dolfan
Member



Joined: 2011/8/23
Posts: 1718
Tennessee, but my home's in Alabama

 Re:

Blaine, very fair question. I want to be clear above all here.

In no way am I pooh-poohing the idea of visual depictions to communicate the gospel. This is not my dictum on what is appropriate or acceptable. I've watched movies that are "Christian" and enjoyed them. But, that is all I can say for them. They were enjoyable, moving, or fun or whatever.

But, follow me, here. Pardon the length. If communication theory bores you, ignore the rest of this. :) I've spent a lot of years -- my undergrad degree was in communications -- thinking on this and reading and pondering it. My views are informed to differing degrees by certain authors. So, I'm just coming clean with that. You can make of this what you will. But, please DON'T make of it that I condemn Christian-themed videos being used or viewed.

To say that image-based knowledge is not a form of knowledge that reflects God's nature is not to say He forbids images as communication of His word. It is simply an acknowledgement that they are two very different "technologies", so to speak, each with their own inherent biases. Because God is (and I almost cringe to type this for fear of being misunderstood) the "word God" (that is, He reveals Himself as the Word and not just IN words), He unsurprisingly eschews images as reflections of Himself AND He guides us away from misunderstanding Himself by forbidding the worship of images. He is zealous and jealous about His revelation of Himself. After all, it is HIS glory, HIS name's sake, HIS nature that is being served by our redemption in the first place.

(Bear, this is why I often come back to this issue of the nature of God and His character, His being. It permeates every other matter of our knowledge of God and our relationship with Him. Anyone who would listen to me may get frustrated or bored or disgusted with me, and I get it. But, I also am fixated on Him to some extent and His nature. Every sin that we commit is a proposition that we accept and which answers God's concern with us as being in His image, and here is what it says: "God, you say, 'I am that I am', well, 'I am who I am,' God. And what this I am is going to do and be is X, Y, Z, etc." )


God is Word. Right? Does God love images? You bet. He made US in HIS image, and He loves us. But, how did He make us in His image? By the Word, through the Word. As His image-bearers, whenever WE engage in image-making we are exercising that much of us which retains a semblance of His image in us; because we are fallen and sinful, our image-making is also God-unlikeness in us. We cannot be trusted to make images because we will look upon our own creation and call it good, and we have no goodness.

That is the bias of an image. It demands approval. It demands recognition. Otherwise, it is of no utility at all. God was pleased to approve His image in us in creation before the Fall. HE recognized His image in us, and HIS recognition gave it value to HIM. And because He was personally present in the garden with His image-bearers, Adam and Eve, there was no issue about images, no need to address it.

In the fallenness of our existence, images take on an entirely different disposition. They do not simply reflect God’s nature and image. They reflect those things that WE, the creators of the images, would have others to see in them, but the ability of those images to carry the fullness of truth --- compared to truth conveyed in words --- is PARTICULARLY lacking in the context of understanding who God is. That is, a video depiction of Jesus dying on a cross may depict an *infinitely good* event of historical and theological truth. If anyone sees that, they are expected to pass judgment on its value. Its value depends not on its ability to communicate historical and theological truth, but its ability to impress upon the mind a distinct kind of knowledge that only comes from image-based communication. It can never approach the depth of word-based propositions of that same event.
People may react to a Jesus film with opinions about Jesus as a great teacher and martyr and well-intended. They may walk away with a sense of injustice at the crucifixion of such a good man. They may even be emotionally or sentimentally moved with the thought of “He did that for me?”. But, they will never, by viewing that depiction, arrive at the truth of Jesus as God nor the truth of their own estate and need for Him, what life in Him really is, what the death and resurrection of Christ MEANS, nor any other necessary truth without which the gospel is never truly communicated.

But, people today will argue with that supposition. Why? Because today – in the image-driven world of our era and culture – seeing is believing. In an image based world, seeing a video depiction of Christ on the cross elicits reaction to the image, but not to the propositions made by the Christ’s crucifixion. That requires words. Why? Because we are word-creations of a God who is inherently The Word. It is who He is. And, in the transformation of ourselves into the image and likeness of Jesus, it is who we are to be.

There’s way more to this. Way more. But, this is already too long and boring and probably won’t even be read by most who see it. So, for everyone’s sake, the end. :)


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Tim

 2017/3/7 10:45Profile









 Re: Tim

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Dear brother I appreciate what you're saying. But frankly you've left me somewhere at the last intersection. But then my background is not communication.

A question does come to mind though. Frank and I were discussing this earlier in the thread. In a medium of communicating the gospel truth. Does not the Holy Spirit have to bring the application of that truth from the medium to one's heart?

Bro Blaine

 2017/3/7 10:52
dolfan
Member



Joined: 2011/8/23
Posts: 1718
Tennessee, but my home's in Alabama

 Re:

If He doesn't, bear, it won't happen. He is sovereign.


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Tim

 2017/3/7 14:15Profile





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