This morning on Stand Up For the Truth, I made an admittedly provocative statement regarding pastors and preaching.It was regarding the growing groundswell of calls from Hollywood and leading pastors to utilize movie clips from the newly released Superman “Man of Steel” movie released last week as sermon material.
Warner Brothers is aggressively marketing the “Christian” message of the movie to churches, insisting it is a great sermon topic. And sadly, many pastors just might fall for this shameless marketing ploy from Hollywood.
First of all, when you understand the Bible against the story of Superman, the movie more accurately reflects Mormon rather than Christian theology.Superman is a created being sent to earth to save the planet.Mormonism teaches that Jesus was a created angel sent by God to save the world.Jesus Christ was not created—he is the Alpha and the Omega.All things were created by, through and for Him.He is God, period—not a created being.
All that aside, here is the statement I made today that is causing quite a stir:“If you as a pastor cannot find enough in the Bible to teach from, and feel you need to solicit help from movies like Superman to make a theological point, maybe you should consider a different career.”
The response from pastors has been mixed, but mostly positive.Many are agreeing with my statement, but one call I received said basically “Easy for you to say, since you do not have the pressure of preaching in a church.”Well I informed the pastor that I usually preach about 10 times a year at local churches, filling in for vacationing pastors.He asked me how I determine what I will preach on.My answer:I pray seeking God’s will on what He wants me to preach;when He answers I go to the Word and, guided by the Holy Spirit, I craft my sermon.It is not that difficult folks.Seek God and He will provide.
Lately I hear from many Christians who say they seem to be hearing similar sermons just rehashed from the previous year.Well no wonder since many pastors go to pastors.com for ideas on what and how to preach—and I might add the site tends to be very ‘relevant” if you get my drift.
I am glad my comment has stirred so much discussion.Kudos to you pastors who preach solely from the Word of God, not feeling the desire to be ‘relevant” to a decaying society.Thank you for remaining faithful to God and His Word.I also said on air I see nothing wrong with using a positive secular movie in a secular setting if reaching out to the lost, trying to make a connection where they are at.But church is for building up believers, equipping them for God’s work in a lost world.So if we are going to use secular messages or props, let’s not use them in church where people need to hear what God says—not Hollywood’s latest spin.
In these times we must find our truth and wisdom only in the Word of God.The last place we should look for truth is from Hollywood—no matter how much they attempt to sprinkle in a little Christianity into their marketing efforts. You can put lipstick on a pig, but folks, it’s still a pig.
- Superman: Flying to a church near you (religion.blogs.cnn.com)
- Superman Sermon Notes? Really? (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
- pop culture Christanity (kindism.org)