Thursday, July 21, 2011

HOLY SHIT!!!

So I have been getting a little flack for my language, thought I might address it. I have been accused of a few things:

1. Stumbling others by trying to be relevant

2. Trying to be hip and looking silly

3. Being a bad example as a pastor

4. Not being "holy" according to scriptures teachings

Well lets take a look shall we?

1. Stumbling others...stumbling others... yes, I must admit that gosh dang it, I flippin said some naughty words and one of my brothers began to say the same gosh darn words, and before you flippin know it, he was droppin "f" bombs. A couple of weeks later I caught him looking at internet porn, and now he is addicted to heroin and worshiping satan, all cause I dagnabit said shit. Oh doo doo, I hope you don't wind up renouncing Christ and becoming drug addicted now.

2. Yeah, thats me. I am always trying to look hip with my tattoos, and my slicked back hair doo, and my post punk uniform. Has nothing to do with the guy I was when I got saved, I am just trying to look cool... by speaking like a normal human being. How silly of me, I should be much less silly... Like this:



Perhaps I speak the way I do because that is the way I speak??? Because that is the way my neighbors speak, and that by trying to speak like Ned Flanders I actually am sounding like a self righteous dork? Now don't get me wrong, I refrain from language that is racist, sexual, sexist, or calling people names. But saying shit, instead of doodie, well that isn't me being cool, that is me not being silly!

3. Being a good example of pastor would mean hiding the language that is in my head? pretending to be something I am not? Not expressing myself to the fullest of my possibilities? Being something higher, more above, holier than those I am in community with? Yeah, well I don't want to be any of those things anyways

4. Let me get a bit more serious here. Jesus, nor Paul ever give us a list of words that you can't say on television. There is no list of naughty words, but there are numerous commands to watch your mouth. My question is, have you ever really looked at what those admonitions are saying? Most are about gossip, slander, divisiveness and other such practices that have nothing to do with the naughty word list. I have done some intense research, and when Paul gets a bit more exhaustive about his list of things we should not let our tongue be about: eph 5 3 But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; 4 and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. In context of the passage, and in context of the Greek words, Paul is speaking quite clearly about, sexual joking, jesting, flirting and innuendo. None of which you need a naughty word to do. My "slander" of Mark Driscoll, was much more pushing the envelope of grace than any word I use. And if you actually do a little digging around, you will be shocked at some of the phrases that Paul and Jesus use when describing their opponents. Your personal piety would be much better served by a desire to speak words of encouragement to those who speak the truth in love, than in making naughty word lists.

And in the end, let me confront this ridiculous focus on stupid things like cuss words. Let me start, with a quote from Anthony Campolo

“[According to a profile in Christianity Today entitled] The Positive Prophet, ... I have three things I'd like to say today. First, while you were sleeping last night, 30,000 kids died of starvation or diseases related to malnutrition. Second, most of you don't give a shit. What's worse is that you're more upset with the fact that I said shit than the fact that 30,000 kids died last night.”

Tony Campolo quote


In this message Tony addressed the problems with a moralistic focus on things that serve to give us a feeling of personal piety, while allowing us to ignore issues that are truly on God's heart. Whats more important? 30,000 starving children or a cuss word? In a world where "Christian marriages" end 50% of the time, we are really going to worry about the difference between shit and doo doo in the spoken or written word? In a world where high profile pastor after pastor goes down in flames for adultery, and churches are mired in controversy over protecting child molesting ministers, we are going to address the appropriateness of the word ass? When gay children are being bullied til they commit suicide, people are being sold into sex slavery, and thousands of people are dying in a drug war in Mexico you think God is really concerned about the cultural acceptance of a word or not?

I live in a country where the vast majority of the Christian church has a problem with me using the modern vernacular of the day, while they support the continued killing of not only soldiers, but innocent women and children (conveniently called collateral damage), of brown people far away from home. I scream what the FUCK is wrong with this picture??? Wake up people of God, and get on with Justice and Mercy, and Humility before God.

Now should we worry about personal holiness? Of course, and if you feel cussing is a sin, then by all mean don't do it. But don't dump your doo doo on me.

rev

9 comments:

KLJ said...

Rad.
I don't curse on here because mom reads it and I'm a mama's boy, but rad. Loved the Campolo quote.

seaotter said...

Points 1-3 were shaky, but then so were the accusations. Point 4 nailed it, and I'm taking that Tony Campolo quote. Nicely done.

seaotter said...

PS--We kill people of all colors, and if you want to break it down historically, we've killed fewer brown people than any other color :). When people drag out that tired old "killing brown people overseas" argument, they sound like the white poli-sci major with dreadlocks who is smoking up his tuition money at State U.

john jensen said...

The point is Matt historically we make the "enemy" into the inhuman other. We do so everytime whether calling them
Barbarian hordes, Charlie or in this case racially and religiously profiling people. Talk to my Indian and Sikh friends about their demonization. When you trot out the old dreadlocked berkely student smoking away parents money rhetoric you sound like a nationalistic fascist. See??! Kinda stupid isn't it?

Rev

gord said...

Good points. I don't get too caught up in language myself. Especially little words like shit and ass.

However, being a Christian is also about being sanctified and trying to live a somewhat holy life. Excessive profanity is not something that should be the norm (not saying that John uses excessive profanity, just in general). In short, a Christian should not have a desire to swear. Of course, what a swear word is to some people and what it is to others is a whole other subject.

The quote is kind of silly. Not the part about people getting upset about bad language, because yes, Christians should have more to think about then worrying if a pastor uses the word shit, but somehow comparing it on the same level as 30000 kids dying? i see his point, but just because there is worse things to worry about, doesn't mean lesser evils are acceptable (even though I myself don't see the issue with the word shit).

john jensen said...

Like I tried to point out Gord how is sanctification determined by cultural norms? Words considered "dirty" now weren't before and vice versa. Words in this English speaking country are considered non offensive but in another would get you in a fight? When the Christian walk becomes personal sin management instead of a life given over to following Jesus then we are moralizing Pharisees and in that we are choosing one over the other

As I said it is not either or the point of that quote was not the comparison... But the reaction

Rev

gord said...

I know what you mean about cultural norms. i was just assuming we are talking about the current culture and time which I assume most people who read your blog live in (North America in 2011). and it is all about following Jesus, that is why I 'TRY' to avoid profanity.

But as to your post's topic. I see no problem with you saying shit. My rambling was more about words that you yourself say you don't use (sexual, racial, discriminatory, etc).

gbroughto said...

Here's my reckoning in the contunuing the Rev vs. Driscoll stakes:

1. Cage fight - the rev, (Driscoll to tap out inside 2)
2. Theological argument - tough
Call but probably to Driscoll on points
3. Command & use of naughty words - another close call but might actually go to Driscoll again (although he will have points deducted for cussing-for-effect)

gbroughto said...

Here's my reckoning in the contunuing the Rev vs. Driscoll stakes:

1. Cage fight - the rev, (Driscoll to tap out inside 2)
2. Theological argument - tough
Call but probably to Driscoll on points
3. Command & use of naughty words - another close call but might actually go to Driscoll again (although he will have points deducted for cussing-for-effect)