The IPODing of our faith…

Written by Mark Van Steenwyk : September 25, 2007

image Just what you want.  When it comes to music, you can get just what you want. No need to submit to the lofty concepts of an album.  Just listen to your favorite 2 songs on that album.  Things like context don’t matter.  The artists message is secondary to your desires.  All areas of life seem to shift into the consumer paradigm, but especially entertainment.  No need to watch commercials.  No need to even own a tv.  Just torrent the episodes you can wait for, and use unbox or itunes for the episodes you need now.  Even netflix allows 17 hours of view-on-demand services if you can’t wait two days for that next dvd to arrive. 

I am the consumer.  I want what I want. Without the fluff.  When I want it.

The same could be said, I would argue, with our faith.

It all started with little numbers. We started adding numbers to our Bible so that it would be easier to find things…easier to quote our favorite passages of the Bible.  Then people started just reading those passages and ignoring other ones.  We even have a special coding system to reference these special little passages.  John 3:16. 1 Corinthians 10:13. 

With the development of software and the web, we don’t even have to flip pages to find those favorite passages.  We just type in this little code to jump right to those passages and you see just what you want to see.

We’ve always been selective readers.  But now it is easier than ever.  These days, you don’t have to even encounter the rest of the album of Scripture.  You can just download your favorite songs.

Q: What does this do to our faith?


By the way, I recommend the new “Books of the Bible” Bible.  It removes those little numbers and forces an actual reading of the text.

for further reading . . .

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4 Responses to “The IPODing of our faith…”

  1. Rebekah on September 25th, 2007 1:29 pm

    I think it would add confusion to take out the numbers and chapters. But I do like how The Message has passages. So the thought isn’t broken up. I wish all versions were like that.

  2. Maria Kirby on September 25th, 2007 8:37 pm

    I think the problem is worse than what you described. Long before all those passages were written, people heard God through nature -”the heavens declare the glory of God”. Today, people try and separate the two: faith is faith and science is science; or try and minimize one at the expense of the other: we can’t accept certain scientific conclusions because they don’t fit with our ideas about faith, or visa-versa, we can’t accept some principles of faith because they conflict with our ideas about science/logic. If we really are trying to follow Jesus as the way, the truth, and the life, we have to take truth however it comes. And since God’s ways are higher than our ways, it probably won’t fit neatly into our current paradiem.

  3. Anna on September 26th, 2007 9:01 am

    Thanks for the Bible recommendation! I’ve been looking for something like that for a while.


  4. kay on October 1st, 2007 7:40 am

    I bought the “Books of the Bible” Bible a couple of weeks ago. I really really like it. I can let go of worrying about chapter and verse, let go of what is and isn’t “red letter,” and just READ the story. It’s amazing what you notice and soak in that way.

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