||2017-07-16 00:44:08, 조회 : 489, 추천 : 148
| Pop Culture|
Chapter Six - Moments of Transcendence
One thing definitely associated with popular culture is pleasure; therefore, as participants in pop culture we expect a degree of pleasure. We want our lives to be enhanced by pop culture. It is only natural, God took pleasure in the things he made and what he saw come of his creation. However, the emphasis on taste in pop culture sometimes diverts our attention from what God fancies. This is not the only thing pop culture does to us. Ken Myers says, “the erosion of character, the spoiling of innocent pleasures, and the cheapening of life itself that often accompany modern popular culture.”
Does this mean we are supposed to shun pop culture, and become some kind of recluse? No. Throughout this whole book our author, T. M. Moore, tells us to not shy away from pop culture. Moore tried to exclude himself from pop culture and says it did nothing but hurt his quality of life and ability to convey God’s message. We have to look at the works of popular culture as God’s indirect creation. This is because it is God who has created this world and has given gifts to creators of pop culture. This revelation should move us to judge the works of pop culture righteously and diligently.
As we are approaching popular culture with a Kingdom Mindset, we have five goals.
The first of the five goals is achieving a better understanding. Let us divert our attention to the army of King David. The army of King David was made up of an impressive group of men. They were all well-trained. They all were loyal and passionate. They were versatile, knowing how to wield any weapon that they could get their hands on. However, not all the men of King David’s army were fighters. A group of men, more specifically, the sons of Issachar were people who “understood the times and knew what Israel needed to do.” The sons of Issachar were trained to understand Israel’s enemies, Israel’s allies, weaknesses, strengths, resources, etc etc. Without these men, the mighty warriors would have little to no direction on the battlefield; therefore, they wouldn’t have been useful at all. This is what we must be like. We have to analyze the culture of the time to help fight the enemies of God. The popular arts have the capacity to evoke reflection of one’s self. The more acquainted we are with pop culture the better we would be able to see the pros and cons.
The second goal is the ability to communicate more effectively. By becoming well acquainted with pop culture we will be able to reach out to nonbelievers and believers alike more effectively. We can’t be out of touch with the times, because then we will become more foreign to our listeners. Within the church, communication will be enhanced. Sometimes we will be able to relate with one another with works of pop culture and will be able to form a stronger relationship. We can also use the works of pop culture to convey a stronger message to both those in and out of the church. One way is sports. Churches can create sports teams and then there is now a more Christian-friendly atmosphere for children and adults alike.
The third goal is “better recreating.” By taking a kingdom approach to popular culture we find our rest and recreation time to be more God-centered. Jonathan Edwards advises, “So we ought to subordinate all our other business, and all our temporal enjoyments, to this affair of travelling to heaven. Thus we should eat and drink and clothe ourselves and improve our conversation and enjoyment of friends. And whatever business we are setting about, whatever design we are engaging in, we should inquire with ourselves, whether this business or undertaking will forward our way to heaven.” For example, if we are going to go out to a baseball game we would be able to see the beauty of God’s creation when we look around: the weather, the sound of chanting, the green grass, the creativity to create such a game, etc.
The fourth goal is “better celebration.” Ultimately, we live to glorify God. We can expect ourselves to become more effective in our works for God as we take a kingdom approach to pop culture. Moore says, “We are not interested in learning about popular culture for its own sake rather, our objective is to discover the beauty, goodness, and truth of the Lord, to improve our own tastes, to be pleased with what pleases Him, and to prepare ourselves as His ambassadors to serve the interests of His kingdom.” I think this is a perfect way to describe this goal.
Finally, our fifth goal is “better culture.” As our taste grows and expands we become more keen to fancy the same thing our Lord fancies. This will aid us in becoming more involved in pop culture with a kingdom approach. We will think twice about our own cultural choices and help others contemplate their own cultural choices. We will also help enrich the Christian culture. Now it seems that Christian television, radio, and film are in mediocre conditions - because they are. We can become more involved in pop culture and help fix the Christian culture.
1. In which of the areas discussed in this chapter would you like to derive more benefit from your involvement in pop culture? What might that look like as you begin to realize that objective?
2. What progress have you made in realizing the goals you set for this study? Have and new goals been suggested to you along the way?
3. What’s next for you? What will you do with what you have studied in this book? Can your current involvement in pop culture continue?
4. Think of the people you know who are deeply immersed in the various forms of pop culture. How might your taking kingdom approach to pop culture better prepare you to show them the love of Christ and to help them see something more of the reality of his Kingdom? What will that require of you?