Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Best Left To Professionals?

In the Internet generation, anyone can start a blog and put forth their views on any given topic (well except perhaps in places like China where Facebook and Youtube are often blocked. -- source#1 and source#2).  This ability has had positive and negative effects.  While this allows for the possibility of otherwise stifled views to get out, (which could be positive or negative) it has also allowed for such a deluge of information that it is often difficult to sift through credible and non-credible information.  This is one reason I have a practice of source linking as much as I can when I write.  This way the reader can follow up on the sources of the information.
However, there is also an element of...well...can we call them snobbish elitists who think that just about everything is best left to the "professionals". As the "new media" (which includes talk radio, blogs, and podcasts among other sources) began to grow, the entrenched media, such as network TV, newspapers, and magazines are quickly being displaced.  The move to the new media isn't simply because it is "new", but because it is "free-er".  Radio talk show hosts such as Rush Limbaugh, who was NEVER a "professional" by the way (he did not go to school to be in radio) -- radio talk shows paved the way.  With decades and decades of dominance by the mainstream media, reporting only the liberal slant, finally people had enough and sought out other venues of information instead of what was coming from the "professionals".
At first, the mainstream media ignored these upstarts as nothing and as no threat.  But as the audiences grew and the mainstream media lost its hold, the mainstream media had to seek another answer.  Now, the mainstream media claims that the audiences of people such as Rush are "mind numb robots" and non-thinking.  In reality, if anyone was making robots out of its audience, it was the mainstream media which spoon fed its audience, so much so that the reporters would often give commentary DURING some speech or event of which the audience itself could listen directly -- as if we needed the media to interpret what we were hearing and seeing.
But since the advent of the Internet, all bets are off.  The snobbish elitists have no hold.  Sure, they still try to portray themselves as the "professionals", but if they aren't going to report on the REAL ISSUES, if they aren't going to give us the sources to follow ourselves, then they are only "professionals" at covering up the truth.
In the theological realm, we experience this as well.  But let me be careful here to say, I'm not some wild-eyed radical individualist.  That is what makes it so difficult for these "professionals" to dimiss what I'm saying.  I am NOT urging people to strike out on their own as some lone-rangers.  Rather I'm saying ANYONE, with the desire to be more a part of the historic Christianity, of the community of saints needs not to wait upon some "professional".  Cleave with the community of saints that has been adoring and worshiping and following the same Jesus and the same Gospel for 2000 years.  The same Christianity that transcends denominational lines. The tie the binds us, Christ Jesus and Him crucified and risen, and glorified and coming in the clouds and sitting at the right hand of the Ancient of Days (Dan 7:13, Mat 26:64).
Don't seek the approval of some snobbish elitist who thinks the plough-boy cannot be more than the pope, more than the pastor, or more than the seminary president. (ref)  Believe it or not, I've had snobbish elitist "Christian" men, send me personal emails with copyright warnings that make it appear that they will take legal action if I even forward or copy their email to another person.  Then don't send me any of your emails.  I don't want to hear from you if you are that afraid of your own words.
The point is, we Christians should NOT be seeking to be radical individualists, but rather "radical conformists"...always conforming to the mind of Christ. (Philippians 3:8-11) Always seeking to be united with the community of saints, the Body that Christ wrought. (Philippians 2:1-2)  Nor should we seek to be snobbish elitists.  We serve the King of kings, in whom is all glory.  Christians should be seeking to build up and contend for the unity of faith, the faith once for all delivered to the saints. (Jude 1:3)  Which by its very nature means some people AREN'T within this community and AREN'T part of this faith, and AREN'T part of the saints.  It seems so many so-called Christians today are too timid to acknowledge this fact, but the reason I mention it, is because it is even more frustrating when the so-called "professionals" seem to not acknowledge this fact.
To conclude, whether plough-boy or "professional" remember that not all men are sent to Nineveh.  Not all men are sent to Rome.  Not all men are sent into the world, but we Christians are sent and to be preaching Christ and the Gospel.  We are not to be seeking status or station.  We are not be conforming to this world, but rather our minds aways renewed (Romans 12:2).  Seek to be united with Christ in the Church that He builds, by the apostles He hand-picked, by the Holy Spirit He sent.

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