sermon

Cultural Christianity

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My favorite quote from this sermon I heard earlier this month at Waypoint Church in O’Fallon, Missouri:

 

“Cultural Christianity says that God is useful.”

 

It reminds me of a couple of years ago when I used to meet with mormon missionaries. They’d come over to my apartment, teach me their lessons about mormonism, and then we’d have conversations about religion and the Bible.

One of the first odd things that struck me about how they talked about their religion was that they made it sound like just a nice thing you should add to your life. There are a lot of benefits. It’ll improve your life. It sounded like they were selling me a diet or fitness plan. They made God sound useful.

I’m not trying to say mormons are the only ones guilty of this. We can ALL do this if we’re not careful.

The gospel doesn’t exist to improve your life. If you accept the gospel, it’s going to ruin your life. The Bible says that the old you is dead and Christ will give you a new life and new identity.

It changes EVERYTHING!

In that sermon the pastor makes the point that God is not useful, He's beautiful. That should be our perspective. That should influence our expectations and how we approach Him. He is to be known and enjoyed and revered. He’s not your life’s most effective plunger who sits in the closet until you clog things up.

If you spend time with Him your eyes will be opened to the WONDER and BEAUTY. It will inspire AWE and AMAZEMENT. He will blow your freaking mind.

Some people leave the church because they came to God during a tough time thinking God was merely useful. Then when they felt like things got better they didn’t need Him anymore. They added Him to their lives so they could subtract Him just as easily.

Like your life is a dining room table and God was a nice flowery display added to in the middle to make it look nicer. Then when the dinner is over, you can get rid of the decorations until you need them again. In reality Christianity is not just about decorating the table. It’s not even about replacing the table with a nicer one. You’re moving into a whole new house.

Taylor Johnson's Sermon From SAGU Chapel

This last week I got to do an event at Southwestern Assembly of God University. I'm still replaying the whole thing in my mind because it was all just too cool to be true.

I spoke in chapel in the morning and did a free comedy show on campus that night.

Was I nervous to speak in chapel? Yes. Absolutely. I was terrified.

1. I graduated from this school. I sat in chapel for 4 years. I remember what it felt like when there was a great speaker and when there was terrible one. What if I’m one of the bad one?!

2. The way I thought I was supposed to end my sermon felt so risky to me. I kept asking God to confirm that this was His idea and not mine, because if it was mine there was a chance it would crash and burn and be a disaster.

3. I had a comedy show on campus that night. I knew chapel was going to be a bit of an audition. If I bombed in the morning then there was no way anyone would come to the show. I had to bring 100% if I wanted any sort of audience. 

But the students in chapel wiped all those fears away. They were on board for everything. They bravely responded to the end of the message. And we had around 500 people at the show that night!

It was awesome.

I'm so happy I was able to take the type of event I do for churches and adapt it for Christian colleges. It would be so cool if this opened more doors at more schools. I love speaking to college students.