Friday, January 07, 2011


On December 13 the Barna Group Research came out with what they call six megathemes.  I value this group as their grasp of the present culture can signal both open and closed doors for our outreach.  The first one is my focus, The Christian Church is becoming less theologically literate.  A synopsis of their elaboration is that fewer are aware of basics to the point they are not sure how faith is to be integrated into their lives or how the Holy Spirit is to be more than symbolic and iconoclastic.

I see two reasons this first point is developing: (1) Unbelievers don't know to read the Word, and (2) believers don't know to read the Word.  Unbelievers (as I once was) don't realize the Bible has a message.  They really believe it is a nice book to be respected; but overall they have no idea why.  Believers who ignore the Word (as I once did) do so because man's traditions have blurred Holy Truth.  We struggle to see His thoughts for the bombarding of historical figures (past and recent) who had large (self)authoritarian voices.

Preachers, teachers, elders, and parents, we will do well to heed Barna's observations.  The Group is giving us a important clue.  Stay with the Word.

FYI, the other five of the megathemes are:
  1. Christians are becoming more ingrown and less outreach-oriented.
  2. Growing numbers of people are less interested in spiritual principles and more desirous of learning pragmatic solutions for life.
  3. Among Christians, interest in participating in community action is escalating.
  4. The postmodern insistence on tolerance is winning over the Christian Church.
  5. The influence of Christianity on culture and individual lives is largely invisible.


Anonymous said...

Interesting post. I was wondering about the Barna Group's last finding. "The influence of Christianity on culture and individual lives is largely invisible." Do you happen to know what they mean? Is it largely nonexistent? Or is it largely present, but unnoticed?

Terry Rush said...

Anon...may I call you Al?

Here's a part of what the Group concluded:

"Christianity has arguably added more value to American culture than any other religion, philosophy, ideology, or community. Yet, contemporary Americans are hard pressed to identify any specific value added. Partly due to the nature of today's media, they have no problem identifying the faults of the churches and the Christian people."