Two from Faith Central
Just a quickie to point up two interesting pieces on Libby Purves' column Faith Central. The first points to a movement urging prayer at the petrol pumps here in America... Which is typical... Don't bother your ass doing anything yourself to conserve the resources of the earth that God put into your stewardship... Just pray that God will bail you out. Not just typical of America and its attitude to fuel, but to western Christianity and its attitude to God.
Anyway... by comparison to the US, back in the UK we don't need a short prayer meeting but a 24/7 prayer vigil... and it will probably only be a short time before someone suggests one.
Then she picks up on a 1969 interview with John Lennon which the Sunday programme on BBC Radio 4 broadcast this week (Radio 4 keeping up its reputation for being topical and up to date) in which he explains his "We're bigger than Jesus" comment about the Beatles, which was widely castigated at the time (and responded to by Larry Norman with his line after Jesus Christ Superstar came out "Dear John, Who's more popular now"). As any vaguely thinking Christian at the time might have worked out he was only telling the truth that, at least in popular consciousness, the Beatles WERE bigger than Jesus. He wasn't saying that was necessarily a good thing. But the interesting thing in this interview is apparently his insistence that, while he was highly antipathetic towards the hypocrisy and rigidity of the church at the time, he was deeply appreciative of Christ and his teachings, going on to claim that "I'm one of Christ's biggest fans."
But that's part of the problem, is that Jesus doesn't want fans... because fans can be terribly fickle... There were plenty of fans on palm Sunday... What he wants are followers... And it is Christ's followers who really make up the church... Not the po-faced people who kicked John Lennon out of Church for laughing and not the idiots who stand around on petrol station forecourts praying for lower petrol prices.