Skip to main content

The sin of boring people with God

"...imagination is a Christian duty is that when a person speaks or writes or sings or paints about breathtaking truth in a boring way, it is probably a sin. The supremacy of God in the life of the mind is not honored when God and his amazing world are observed truly, analyzed duly, and communicated boringly. Imagination is the key to killing boredom. We must imagine ways to say truth for what it really is. And it is not boring. God's world - all of it - rings with wonders. The imagination calls up new words, new images, new analogies, new metaphors, new illustrations, new connections to say old, glorious truth. Imagination is the faculty of the mind that God has given us to make the communication of his beauty beautiful.
Imagination may be the hardest work of the human mind. "
God is not Boring


  1. Totally agree. But when it comes down to it I know a whole bunch of folk for whom it is a bigger sin for me to be unclear than to be dull. Gotta risk a lack of clarity from time to time for the sake of the beauty.

  2. Agreed, clarity is very important. Making what God has revealed obscure is at least as bad.

    I guess we can try to aim for both when attempting to portray the majesty of God.

  3. yep, Amen! Far too many churches bore people to their deaths, never bringing them true Life!

  4. Reminds me of a Marcus Honeysett comment at BEC one year - that preaching error well is clearly an abomination to the Lord, and preaching glorious truth as if it were boring is also an abomination to the Lord. But I think Piper gets Edwards off that hook by pointing out how even if his delivery was dull, the words he delivered were chosen to show the glory of the content. Hmm.

  5. Surely there is a sense in which the Gospel is never boring and if people find a true presentation of it boring it is their darkened minds?

    (I'm not sure I totally believe this, but it's a commonly held view amongst Calvinists)

  6. The gospel itself is never at fault... but we have a uncanny ability to make the extraordinary gospel sounds and seem ordinary, when nothing could be further from the truth. Everything else is shadows and dreams compared to the glory of the gospel. Let it show!

  7. It occurs to this calvinist that sometimes we use the reality of darkened hearts as an excuse for our poor efforts... just as it's easy for me to slate a sermon for being poor, but it's also entirely possible that the problem wasn't with the sermon but with my heart.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

"Big eyes full of wonder"

Books. Fiction. Libraries. Second only to churches as are the best gateways in your community to ultimate reality and new possibilities.

Our local library has just re-opened after refurbishment, and I love that our boys have spent several mornings there during the summer holidays, discovering some wonderful new stories.

I realised a few months back that I wasn't reading enough fiction. My work necessitates reading a lot of non-fiction, a mix of historical and contemporary thinking, biblical studies and theology. But fiction is the cinderella. Easily overlooked, and yet able to awaken my imagination and show me the way things are meant to be.

So I've picked up a few more lately - bought and borrowed. Not every book attempted flies, and that's ok. These have been winners though.

Ink. This is Alice Broadway's debut novel. It's young adult fiction and tells the story of Leora who lives in a world where the events of your life are tattooed on your skin. Nothing gets hid…

Uniquely Matthew

Reading gospel accounts in parallel is sometimes used to blur the differences in perspective between the evangelists, seeking to harmonise the texts and find a definitive historical account of what happened. No such thing exists because every account is biased and limited. You simply can't record everything. You have to hold a vantage point. And that's not a problem.

Matthew, Mark and Luke take a very different vantage point to John who was of course an eyewitness himself of the events. Comparing the text of Matthew, Mark and Luke across the death and resurrection of Jesus yields two steps.

Firstly, the common ground. All three accounts tell of...
Simon of Cyrene carrying the cross…. · Jesus labelled as King of the Jews…. · Criminals crucified with Jesus… · Darkness in the daytime… · Jesus' loud final cry… The women who witnessed Jesus death, and Jesus' burial… · The tomb lent to Jesus by Joseph of Arimithea… · The women who went to the tomb on the morning of the…

Songs we're singing in Church

Christians are a singing people, it's part of what we do when we gather.

Our church meets morning an evening on a Sunday - normally using 5 songs in each service. So, over the year that's about 520 song-slots available. The report from the database system we use ( tells us that in the past year we've sung about 150 different songs.

Our current most used song has been sung 11 times in the last year, just under once a month. Our top 10 are used about every 6 weeks. By #30 we're talking about songs used every two months. The tail is long and includes loads of classic hymns from across the centuries, plus other songs from the past 40 years, that we have used around once a term or less.

1. Rejoice - Dustin Kensrue

2. Come Praise & Glorify - Bob Kauflin

3. Man of Sorrows - Hillsong

4. Cornerstone - Hillsong

Rejoice was a song I didn't previously know, along with a couple of others that have quickly become firm favourites for me: Chri…