Recently I ran across a film produced by teaching pastor Francis Chan of Cornerstone Community Church in Simi Valley, California. Chan has developed a fifteen minute basic presentation of Jesus' message for newbies in a conversational style.
In the film, entitled "Stop and Think", he carries his surfboard toward the beach and talks to the camera. He does not reference scripture by chapter and verse, although he paraphrases quite a bit. He talks about God's laws and how we all fall woefully short. He talks about God's pain upon seeing His Son mercilessly crucified. He talks about God looking to humanity searching for a bride for His Son. And Chan is getting the smackdown for it.
There are a host of bloggers who are frying him for his weak presentation of the gospel. They're accusing him of watering it down, not telling the whole story of propitiation and substitution. They're blasting him for neglecting to mention the exclusivity of the Gospel as opposed to other world religions.
I have never heard of Chan before this morning, but it was a quite moment in our house so I watched the whole film. I think it's ok. Actually, it's beautifully shot against the California coastline. I do think it's a little weird that he carries his surfboard for fifteen minutes and takes forever to get close to the water....but other than that, I think the guy has produced a helpful tool. Not the whole shebang, but a great tool. I cannot fathom why people are putting so much energy into bashing this guy.
Did I mention the film was only fifteen minutes long? Or that Chan thinks of this more as a starting point than a full theological presentation of the Gospel? Or that the critics are just blogging?
I think I'm going to refer to it as 'just blogging' from now on...because until you're creating something better, all you can do is blog.