Monday, March 27, 2006

“Will you hear well done or be well done?” – Church Billboard

At one point in my life, I would have agreed with displaying this sign. Now, it really bothers me.
You’ve heard the saying “It’s better to scare someone into heaven than to lull them into Hell.” My point is that if someone decides to follow Christ because they want to escape Hell, their motivation is entirely wrong, and out of touch with the gospel. Even more, this sign infers that you can be good and you will hear “well done” and if you do evil, you will be sent to Hell. This is not only out of touch with the gospel, it is the exact opposite of what the gospel teaches. The gospel teaches that our works will never be enough to earn God’s favor.

On the other hand, what about church billboards that have these sayings meant to make you feel good about yourself? What about “Jesus loves you no matter what?” To me this says “you can do whatever you want and live your life like you want, and Jesus will always love and accept you.” This isn’t the gospel either, and can lead to a false sense of security. It possibly does more damage to make people think everything is fine, when they are in desperate need of forgiveness.

What good if any is there in “bumper sticker” or “billboard” evangelism? The gospel is not hard to understand, but the full story can’t be compressed to one cute saying.

For further reading, I recommend:
In for the Long Haul, which discusses “sound bite theology.” I don’t often agree with those on the left, but this is good.

1 Comment:

  1. Wisemantown United Methodist Church said...
    "Free trip to Heaven. Details inside."

    I thought your would appreciate this one as well. Like you said--not the ideal motivation.

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