The Lack-of-Appeal Problem
Though Christian publishing and entertainment functions as a multi-billion dollar industry, it draws little attention from popular culture.
Many people look at faith-based movies and music as irrelevant, inauthentic, or out of touch, preaching to the choir but not engaging the rest of the world. People believe the Bible is unappealing, not solely because of the Bible itself, but largely because of the projects inspired from it.
With art and entertainment based on the Bible—or at the very least informed by its teachings—there is rarely much appeal outside Christian circles. Dr. Gregory Thornbury, president of King’s College in New York City, once noted that “Christianity is the greatest of all nouns but the lamest of all adjectives.” As Thornbury rightfully puts it, the cultural creations of Christians have been so uninspiring and unsatisfactory that they’ve given the Bible a bad reputation.
In a society with continual social and technological advancements, there are also individuals who don’t find the Bible appealing because they don’t believe it has stayed up with the times. For this group of people, the Bible seems to be outdated as it relates to the many multifaceted issues that we’re faced with in our culture today. Because of a lack of strong voices in the media and in the public square speaking on behalf of the Bible—in a positive way—they assume that the Bible doesn’t have a framework for the challenges and characteristics of our modern world.
Even though the Bible may never boast the appeal of the latest Apple product, it still speaks to the issues facing us today. While written thousands of years ago, the Bible is as true and applicable today as it was to its original audience in centuries past. That said, as Christians we haven’t been as effective as we could be at seeing and showing that relevance. In other words, the Bible doesn’t seem appealing because we haven’t made it appealing in our culture—through the work we do and through the way we live our lives.