Bad Church Sign: 50 Shades

This week’s bad church sign of the week reads…uhmm…well…here we go:

“Fifty Shades of Old Testament Sex”

Wow.  In the last year, the book, Fifty Shades of Grey, took America by storm.  This story on sexuality had many giving it rave reviews and others claiming it was down right evil.  And so what does this church do?  Use this controversial title to lure passerbys into their church to hear how Old Testament sex is like the book?  Better than the book?  Not sure exactly.

What’s the problem?

The problem is that so many churches today borrow so much material from culture and then try to spiritualize it.

While it is used as an attempt to attract guests to a spicy topic, what often happens is that not much truth is proclaimed.  More time is spent trying to advertise the series than prepare the Word.  And oftentimes, churches can be so full of the culture that it is hard for a person to make life change.

The goal of many churches today is to make the place so friendly for an unbeliever to come that they feel comfortable.  I am all about making an unbeliever feel welcome at church, but if the music, vibe, and message inside the doors is exactly the same outside the doors, it sends a mixed message that there is no difference in following Christ.  Please know I am not a fuddy-duddy fundamentalist saying that all such efforts are dangerous, but many of them are.

It is a slippery slope when it comes to marketing church.  When you make a church service feel exactly like what is felt in the culture, morality can often be lax.  What draws the people in is what is needed to keep them coming.  So you feel this need to come up with something more shocking each time and can (not always) take you away from the main thing.  Good intentions have a way of clouding truth.

I just think of the underground church in China or the persecuted believers in the Sudan and wonder what they would think if they saw our attempts to spice up church and the Word.  I wonder if our attempts would just seem so shallow and self-absorbed.

God, forgive me for the times when I tried to market you thinking that you needed my help to impact lives.  Wake up the American Church.

2 thoughts on “Bad Church Sign: 50 Shades”

  1. Travis,

    In the first quarter of 2013, I will relaunch, an internet radio station, and I want to add your music to the playlist. WE KNOW RADIO will play a wide variety of music: hymns in all kinds of arrangements, contemporary Christian, country, some classical, bluegrass, some choral, world, a very wee bit of rap (three songs so far), gospel and jazz. Right now, the playlist contains over 14,000 songs, and I’m digging and looking and gathering as many more. Before we play a tune, all licensing will be in place with SoundExchange, ASAP, BMI and SESAC.

    Along with the music will be several hundred 2 to 3 minute “WE KNOW” vignettes played every few hours to inform, instruct and encourage. Also, the obligatory Scripture verses (I’m working with an autistic young man with a fabulous voice to record those). This project is also an extension of our home school program, so you’ll hear voices from my kids.

    The whole idea of WE KNOW RADIO is to remind Christians of what it is we do know. Your music will go far to help us do that. I’d like to add many of the songs from your record Coming Home.
    I can take CD’s or audio files sent to my drop box. WAV files are best. If you want to share Todd’s music with the WE KNOW RADIO audience, I’d greatly appreciate it!

    Grace to you,
    Dann Golden-Collum
    12701 Galleon Circle
    Anchorage AK 99515

Comments are closed.