Monday, November 1, 2010

On Crazy Love Pt. 1

Or Why Francis Chan Can't Use Inflammatory Statements

In our small group recently we have been reading Crazy Love by Francis Chan.  I think over all our group has 'enjoyed' this book.  I put this in quotes because our group has enjoyed thinking critically about books before and we are glad for a book that is spurring on some real conversations in our group.  Some of us have more issues that others with the book.  The major issues seem not to really revolve around what he is actually saying, but in the way that he says it.  Here are a few quick examples:

"A relationship with God simply cannot grow when money, things, activities, favorites sports teams, addictions, or commitments are piled on top of it." pg 67.

"To call someone a Christian simply because he does some Christian-y things is giving false comfort to the unsaved." pg. 88.


"It is a remarkable cycle: Our prayers for more love result in love, which naturally causes us to pray more, which results in more love..." pg. 104

I tried to pick out a few - even though I didn't get to all of them.  The first two seem to fall into the category of  "extreme statements" while the third was critiqued on its basis in the reality of the Christian life.  For the sake of this post not going on and on, lets tackle the first idea and get to the next thought later.

So, who gets to make extreme statements? ...
 We do.  With out going off on an entire political correctness libertarian leaning speech here, it is important to note that our culture values saying things gently.  This is great when the customer service rep is explaining to you why your bags still haven't been delivered, but some times you need to shoot strait with people.  This is a lot more a cultural issue than a specifically gospel issue.

The gospel message itself is very extreme.  The message that you are not the center of the universe go completely against our culture - and most others.  The idea that the One who is at the center of the universe would seek communion with us in this life and the life to come is an equally extreme idea.

- Tell me what you think? Is Chan off base? Dead on?