The America-Only Message

Well, I knew this post would be complicated.  But I’m not smart enough to stay away from complicated or controversial topics, so let’s go.

There is a growing trend in America among TV evangelists, mega-church preachers, and others.  This trend is disturbing, and well should be, for any Christian interested in hearing the whole gospel, not just a sugar-coated version of it.  Increasingly, messages are being broadcast that fit a category that I’m calling America-Only.  In fact, there should be a label on each broadcast warning of this – “Please notice, this message can only be  preached in North America – Results Not Typical”.

Before I get into what constitutes an America-Only message, let’s go back and look at what Jesus and the apostles preached.  Number one, their message was simple.  Sometimes it used stories or parables to convey a thought or moral.  Number two, their message could be preached or taught anywhere in the world.  It was not culturally bigoted or slanted towards any specific society.  Number three, their message did not indicate any particular social standing, status, or income bracket.

Now, let’s switch back to the America-Only message.  Because America represents the most affluent society in history, and because Americans have more privileges and benefits than most of the rest of the world, it only stands to reason that the message from our pulpits might be oriented towards our life-style.  But, make sure you only preach that message for American audiences.  It won’t play in India or Malaysia, or in Ethiopia, or most of the rest of the world.

The true gospel, when preached properly, will play anywhere in the world.  And isn’t that what we really need?  Paul became so obsessed with promoting a world-wide gospel he said he would only preach Christ and Him crucified.  Isn’t that the core of the gospel?  Don’t you find it interesting the parables have general appeal, and can be taught or preached to all people of all economic or cultural backgrounds?

I challenge every teacher, every preacher, every Christian leader, to seek out those messages that will play world-wide, and avoid the America-Only syndrome.

One Response to “The America-Only Message”

  1. James Chapman Says:

    Amen, Chuck, amen!

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