The Christianization of Things

Time for a frustrated rant. Feel free to disagree and/or be offended.

I grow weary at the compulsion i see to “christianize” or “make christian” things which are actually just fine the way they are. In past days i’ve seen posts of someone who has written “christian” lyrics to the song Hallelujah and i’m supposedly going to get chills when i hear it. I saw another post of a church putting on a “christian” version of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol using angels instead of ghosts and having a gospel message.

Here is my problem with this: things do NOT have to be overtly “christian” to have moral value and a positive impact. They can be secular and be moving (like for instance Beethoven’s 5th or Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture). In fact: Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is one of the most moving and powerful and positively moral books ever written and has made an impact on more lives than any other novella in history. Why does it need to be “christianized”? It’s bad enough that the story is used to sell everything imaginable in the month before Christmas every year, but i’ve grown to expect that kind of plagiarism from greedy marketers who lack the creativity to be original. I don’t believe that Christians need to ‘fix’ things like Dickens’ story or Leonard Cohen’s beautiful and moving song. It’s almost like Christians think that the accounts in the Bible aren’t powerful enough by themselves, so we need to help. What’s next? Are we going to repaint the Mona Lisa to show her holding baby Jesus?

Music, art and literature can all be uplifting, morally and ethically powerful and be edifying to a person’s heart and soul without ever being overtly Christian. A Christian can paint, sculpt, write, compose and perform things without them being overtly Christian and those things can still be uplifting, edifying and can honor God who made man in His image to be creative.

Can’t we appreciate art, music and literature the way it was created without having to make everything overtly “christian”? Of course we can. So why do we have “Christian” music, “Christian” movies, “Christian” books? Why is there an entire industry dedicated to manufacturing and selling things targeted specifically for Christians? The reason is that instead of building relationships and bridges to non-believers, Christians have created their own sub-culture and isolated themselves from anything that isn’t “Christian” which of course is the exact opposite of what Jesus commanded and what the disciples and apostles practiced.

Yes, this is a rant. I’m sure i’ve offended some people, but that’s why i named my blog UnapologeticallyJohn.com

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