Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Worldliness then and now

At Christian History Blog, Collin Hansen writes about "the bane of preachers everywhere" as the NFL season begins once again to compete with preachers for the Sunday attention of Christians in the United States:
Few preachers I know would dare mention this frustration in a sermon. You might as well complain about the weather as lament the NFL's popularity. You can't do anything to change either. Pastors don't want to come across as puritanical or legalistic. We have moved beyond previous generations' complaints about card-playing, dancing, theatre-going, and Sunday sports. What many Christians may not realize, however, is that these pastoral concerns run all the way back past the fundamentalists, beyond the Puritans, to the early church. Even those of us who love to watch the pigskin fly would be wise to consider the warning from the most famous preacher in early Christianity.
The preacher was John Chrysostom, and you might be surprised at how closely John's experiences preaching in the Roman Empire line up with those in the United States today. And thanks to Cal Habig for the link.


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