"That Bible of yours is outdated."
"Your Jesus needs to get with the times."
"That old religion stuff just isn't for me anymore."
I'm sure we've all heard statements like these. There is this idea out there, perhaps more prevalent now than before, that faith in Jesus Christ and following His teachings is outdated. A huge, church-y buzz word that has floated around for a while now is "Relevance.". Is the church relevant? There are magazines and books that try to make sure that we are communicating the message of Christ in terms that a newer, younger, hipper generation can understand.
I agree with that.
However, there is a danger lurking underneath the surface of this idealistic pursuit. Is there such a thing as "too relevant?" I think that's not the whole question that should be asked. The idea of relevance is communicating in a current and applicable way to your audience. I firmly believe in that, BUT, this issue has another half to it...
Relevance should always be in balance with reverence. Reverence should define our relationship to God, and relevance should define our relationship to others. This is a careful and at times difficult balance to keep, but, it is a necessary one. If we water down the message of Christ in an attempt to become more "relevant", then we lose the reverence to His Word. However, the reverse is also true. If we don't stop to look and see if we are impacting our culture at all, in the attempt to be reverent to God, then we have missed the love and compassion of Christ completely.
What's the balance like in your life?
In your church?
- Just a thought.