Drama of the Christian Faith

The British evangelical Dorothy Sayers writes:

The Christian faith is the most exciting drama that ever staggered the imagination of man–and the dogma is the drama. [The central doctrine of Christianity is a tale of] the time when God was the under-dog and got beaten, when he submitted to the conditions he had laid down and became a man like the men He had made, and the men He had made broke Him and killed Him. Nobody is compelled to believe a single word of this remarkable story. But the divine Dramatist has set out to convince us.

How true Dorothy Sayers’ words are! I am preparing for my sermon this weekend, Romans 4, and I am struck again at how rich the “drama” surrounding our faith! We say in a negative way, “Don’t make so much drama!” But we can never eclipse the drama we read in the Gospel.

But we try. Television has become the command center of our new epistemology. It promotes shallow thinking and has pretty well killed reading and rhetoric. The clearest way to see through a culture is to see how it speaks to itself. The television has dramatically and irreversibly shifted the content and meaning of public discourse. Truth is not and can never be show business. (Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves To Death). Americans want show business. This is one danger of our fascile Christian culture (Dawn, Dumbing Down).

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