The Gospel of Gimmitry

I like a good publicity stunt as much as the next guy. Be it a Kardashian wedding that lasts 72 days, or a guy scuba diving for 100 plus hours straight; there is nothing like a good gimmick to get your point across…or to sell books.

But does the Gospel need a gimmick?

When I was a kid growing up in church, pastors used gimmicks to increase attendance. Many a pastor has swallowed a gold-fish, or had pies thrown in his face if an attendance record was broken. It was all done in fun, but was it really necessary?

Does the Gospel need a gimmick?

I read this week that Pastor Ed Young Jr. has released a new book. The book is about sex, and how “God made love so we can make love.” Once the book is released, Pastor Young and his wife are going to place a bed on the roof of the church and stay in that bed for 24-hours! During those 24-hours they are going to give interviews and answer questions about sex…all in the name of Jesus.

Does the Gospel need a gimmick?

What do you think?


4 thoughts on “The Gospel of Gimmitry

  1. I think the Gospel needs no gimmick and that they detract from the Gospel. God did not make love God is love.
    I am disturbed by the amount of current day portrayal of the Gospel as love alone as if sinners are somehow acceptable to God just as they are. The Gospel is good news for condemned God hating sinners if it leads to repentance and faith in Christ for redemption. It is bad news if one continues to love sin, hate God and refuses to avail themselves of the longsuffering undeserved mercy which is the love God extends to sinners.

    • I agree John. I think right now, in the States, there are two broad camps of Christian thought. The first, which is the most popular among guys like Ed Young and Rob Bell, is that primarily God is love. The second (and there is where I fall) is that primarily God is holy. In my opinion, if we start with the premise God is love, you end up in one direction and if you start with the premise God is holy, you end up somewhere else. Saying God is holy doesn’t mean He is not a loving God, quite the contrary; to say God is holy, yet He loves us even though we are sinners, is a higher form of love and one that is beyond our comprehension. To say God is love, without saying He is holy, makes Him a Grandfather figure who will always turn away when we do things that are not pleasing to Him. Without holiness there is no need to repent.

  2. Right with you on that Kevin! This rampant lack of understanding and neglect of the Holiness of God leads to all kinds of nonsense and disrespect for God. It is in truth a denial of God and God’s truth. For one thing to picture a God who loves without all due respect for holiness is to end up with a God who does not care about our highest and best interests.
    To be ungodly and unholy is to be in a pitiful horrible damnable hopeless mess. The true love of God sets out to entirely remedy this pitiful condition with a plan that convicts and convinces one of their God hating condition and need for God’s redeeming restoring to holiness and love for a sin hating God. The sinner needs to be transformed to be like God so that one hates what God hates and is not and loves what God loves and is.
    Today’s “evangelism” needs gimmicks because it is not evangelism. It is not the good news Jesus brought and taught.
    Jesus came to seek and save the lost. We must never forget overlook or treat lightly what lost means. The Holy Spirit is sent to convict and convince the sinner concerning his/her ungodly love for and involvement in sin and hatred of Holy God and righteousness.
    Yesterday I was studying in John 3 Jesus’ encounter with Nicodemus and was struck anew with the clearness of God’s holiness and separateness from sin in this great “God so loved” passage. John the Apostle of love does full justice to the holiness of God.
    Thank you God that you do not sugarcoat our lack of holiness but instead clearly call us to turn from a walking death of sin and into a living righteousness through faith in a sinless savior.

  3. I used to listen to Ed Young, but no so much now because he does do one gimmick after another. No, we do not need gimmicks. We just need the Church being the Church-loving, serving, and sharing the gospel. We do that and we won’t need any gimmicks. Just my opinion.

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