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Fluff Gospel Or The Real Stuff?
By : Craig Brown
Rating : Average Rating : 7.40 From 5 Voter(s)
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Perhaps, just perhaps, the difference between an older generation and the current one would be in how we understand the phrase, "the liberation of Paris". For those with a sense of history it means one thing - Parisians dancing in the steets as the Nazis retreated; for those reared on the cult of celebrity, it conjures up pictures of a breezy Paris Hilton walking through a throng of paparazzi to freedom after serving time for a drink driving charge. My point? My point is that the news has been trivialised. Celebrity, gossip, fluffy dog stories and product promotion are now a prominent feature of many news services. It went so far that in April, mild mannered Ten news-reader, Mal Walden, dismissed on air a story about Lisa Robertson (the flight attendant who treated Ralph Fiennes to an in-flight "upgrade") as "a waste of time". In the US, a news-reader tried to burn a story about Paris Hilton on air, such was her disgust that it was trumping real news stories. Fluff stories are becoming real news. So what has this got to do with Jesus?

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Comments / Feedback
Geoffrey Keeler
I agree with Craig about the 'fluff stories' the media concentrates on these days but I wonder what the real news of our Movement is. In one congregation I was in many years ago an elder member continuously asked the question 'What is the Gospel?' No one ever gave him an answer because, I suspect, we all thought it was obvious. We use the term 'The Gospel of Jesus' but what do we mean? Reading the New Testament I find that 'Jesus went about preaching the Kingdom of God' and in Luke 17:21 he tells the questioning Pharisees that the kingdom of God is in your midst or as in the King James and NI Versions 'within you'. This was not said to the 'converted' but to the enquirers. Do we, today, preach 'the gospel of Jesus'? I think not. What seems to be implied in our presentations of the situation is that the kingdom is within reach only if we 'Let Jesus into our hearts and make Him Lord of our lives'. Whilst many of Jesus' illustrations of the Kingdom are made in 'human terms' to help us understand what he is getting at, the reference that I have quoted seems to suggest that we, being God's creation, the kingdom is already as close to us as ourselves. It is part of our very being. What we commonly preach today is a later doctrine formulated, no doubt, to try to make it easy for us to understand the process. What I am suggesting is that the Kingdom of God is so close that we only have to recognise its existence and commit ourselves to live according to its rules as Jesus taught them. Is this what Jesus meant by calling us to 'come unto him'? We seem to be calling the 'unsaved' to follow a cause (Christianity) rather than a state of living. After all, the death and resurrection of Jesus came after he preached the kingdom of God - so did Christianity. I call myself a Christian because that is the 'name' given to the system that upholds Jesus as the true Christ of God. It was, I am told, given to the Church in Antioch in derision rather than admiration.
Strange that it seems to be held in derision in this 21st Century.
Mark Wall
Go Craig!

Mark Wall
Harold Hayward
1. There is always a danger of recreating Jesus in our own image. He was undoubtedly perceptive and quick to reveal hypocrisy but to claim he cut through institutional red tape” and “exposed missional truth” sounds very post Frost and Hirsch to me. Without the latters’ glossary I wonder how many would know what this means?
2. What is “trivial” in the church is a very subjective concept. Some in the New Testament thought the eating of meat sacrificed to idols was very offensive, others thought concern over this issue was trivial. We need to be careful of those who condemn as trivial views that don’t accord with their own.
3. I accept that the world of Paris Hilton and the cult of celebrity are trivial, but I’m not sure it's trivial when our worship is framed by those values

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