Friday, August 27, 2010

Sunday Sermons are Obsolete

A sister in Scotland suggests, correctly I believe, that the traditional Sunday sermon is obsolete.

The whole idea of a sermon-oriented meeting needs to be re-thought. The assumptions?

When you get people together, you need to teach them. Says who? The people who make a living doing those lectures, that's who. Getting together to learn is a fine thing, but assuming that this needs to dominate every gathering is simply not well thought out. First, you can more easily absorb a podcast than a live lecture. Pause, rewind, review, all these are important learning aids that live speech can't offer. You can also catch the message even if you're not ready to tramp down to the sanctuary, or if you can't. And you have access to lots more teachers and topics than you can get from that one guy who does your pulpit thing every week.

Second, technology renders the need to gather people for simple communication obsolete. It actually became such when reliable mail service became available, but the Internet has established this beyond doubt.

Third, gathering people together, only to forbid them to interact for over half their time together is a terrible waste. It's like buying a boat, towing it to the lake on Saturday morning, loading the family up in the boat, and keeping the boat on the trailer for half the day. It does not make sense. If I'm going to be with my family, I want to be able to connect with them!

Get together to worship, to fellowship, to testify, to pray for each other... all these are sound reasons for us to be getting together. So why do we spend most of our time together looking at the back of our brother's head, being fed information we could have easily have gotten at home?

Traditions are like crabgrass... ubiquitous and hard to kill. Best treatment I know is to shine really bright lights on them and talk honestly about them.


Keith Overstreet said...

And after the doosy I heard today, I couldn't agree more.

Vicki said...

That's a wise sister you have in Scotland ;o)

I liked you boat analogy. I like that you can take my half-baked thoughts and turn them into eloquent statements!