1. notleia says:

    Calvinism: The fear that someone, somewhere, is having fun.

    Seriously, it would be a lot more honest if they just said that fun is a suspicious activity and the only way you can enjoy fun is if you’re worried about it the entire time (so that you are not actually having fun and are therefore safe).

    • #NotAllCalvinists 😉

      But of course, Christians in general have often given this impression. Most likely it’s because we have shallow and un-biblical views of how and why God works all things for the good and joy of His people, sometimes here before Jesus returns, but mostly in the New Earth after He does.

      • Azel says:

        Well the habit of some of Jesus Juking at the first opportunity — which sentences like “There are more eternally significant things you can do with your time than enjoying novels or TV.” are a form of — goes a long way in giving that impression. And, of course, there are the Puritans’ actions when they were in power: no impression to be seen there.

        But I find interesting that you actually give a real response to that statement for people who honestly believe popular culture hasn’t any purpose past “harmless entertainment”: it’s a form of rest.

  2. “Ultimately, these Christian leaders create the same impression as our imaginary pastor who only warns about the Bible. They come across like they secretly don’t like popular culture. Or they believe it’s not worth the trouble. Or they believe we could always make better use of our time.”

    Or…they outright say that all cultural pursuits are a dangerous waste of time that distract from the study of God’s Word, and should be ceased immediately while the study of God’s Word is given the only priority…oh, except for football, which is good, wholesome entertainment and the only reasonable outlet of relaxation for Christian men, and a fantastic fount of sermon illustrations and excuses for ending worship services early “so you can get on with watching the game.”

    Christian women apparently don’t need any popular cultural activities to relax them other than hanging out with their friends and providing the snacks and taking care of the kids…while their husbands watch football.

    I actually heard most of this from a local pulpit not too many years ago.

    Christian fiction and movies were particularly attacked as a huge time waster and dangerous to Christians, and Christian women in particular. The pastor was convinced that reading Christian fiction took women away from God, and wanted them all to stop reading it and study the Bible more instead.

    I went there because my family attended the church but I quickly became convinced that those people never really would acknowledge that I existed and wouldn’t ever be bothered to genuinely care what happened to me or mine. I was a Christian writer so I was beyond the pale, and…I’m not attending that church anymore.

  3. This is a great article. I’ve noticed the same thing and it gets a bit cliched at times. It’s easy to focus on the fact that we’re “not of the world,” and forget that we’re still called to be in the world.

  4. A lot of good thoughts in this article. I especially like, “Why not explore how Jesus has built the work-rest rhythm into the universe, starting right in Genesis 1?” I have never seen this idea articulated so well, but it is true! People, animals, even simple matter experiences this rhythm in one way or another. This article was thought-provoking.

What do you think?