Saturday, October 22, 2005

Giving away too much

I am a proponent ofcommunicating the Christian faith in a way that the unsaved and unchurched can relate to. I am a firm advocate of contextualising the Christian message for each new generation.

That said, there are limits. One of those limits would be to try to promote the Christian faith by using a hook that appeals to humanity's baser characteristics. What I mean is that while I don't mind contextualising the Christiam message to answer contemporary questions, to do so in a way that essentially validates negative impulses or questionable assumptions about what is valuable in life is wrong.

Thomas Nelson Publishers has come up with a version of the New Testament geared towards men that validates a number of questionable ideas. For example, one of the "headlines" is "Sexcess: success with the opposite sex!" I realise that the point is likely to point men in the direction of how tio be godly men, but to do so while baiting them with sexuality seems quite opposed to the spirit of biblical teaching, not to mention pandering to the attitudes of an already oversexed society.

I give credit where it is due; this is a slick idea in terms of marketing. Marketing though can either create trends or follow them. It seems to me that Thomas Nelson is following here, and that is disappointing. The Holy Spirit is more creative than imitative, so I am given to wonder whether the Spirit is behind this product.

1 comment:

Luke said...

Thank you for writing about Thomas Nelson. I work at Nelson and am trying to get started as a blogger to help our company get better at listening. I have a few follow-up questions on my blog. Please feel free to add a comment or post a reply. I would love to here from you.