Monday, July 20, 2015

Don't Read All About It

Christians need to exercise a healthy scepticism towards the mainstream media, and find alternative sources of news alongside it. That seems to be the lesson of the last 7 days. If you're a newly elected political leader, you can expect more scepticism towards your faith than towards your politics, and if Jesus does play any part in your life, don't bother mentioning it to a journalist because they'll leave that bit out anyway. One high profile BBC broadcaster notes that 'it's almost socially unacceptable to say that you believe in God'

A sensible approach might be to assume, even if it seems unkind, that every worldview is worthy of suspicion and scrutiny, and that it’s not just some chap in the Lib Dems talking to someone who may or may not exist in the sky who should be grilled about his fundamental assumptions, but everyone who expresses an interest in making big decisions on voters’ behalf. Yes, we should be suspicious of Tim Farron’s Christian worldview – but only in so far as we suspect everyone’s funny jumble of beliefs and assumptions.

Reasonable (mostly) words at the Spectator, but just look at the headline it's been given. 

What's the message? Keep quiet about your Christian faith. If you don't, and it's something positive, it won't be reported anyway, either that or we'll use it as a stick to beat you with. Welcome to a 'free' media. 

So, head for the bunkers? No, the suspicion and misunderstanding faced by the first century Christians was several orders of magnitude worse than anything in the UK at the moment. And what is the advice of their main leader? "Always be prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks you to give a reason for the hope that is in you, but do it with gentleness and respect." (1 Peter 3) We still need to be PG certificate Christians, Prepared, Gentle, and suitable for a general audience. And meanwhile, pray for Tim Farron, who has suddenly become one of the most high profile Christians in the country. 

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