Meathead Christianity

I’ve discovered a recent fad in certain Christian circles; a particular sub-culture, namely Meathead Christians.  You may have noticed these oafs lounging in front of a TV, sipping a Mountain Dew, wearing the jersey of their favorite player (known to run as high as $80 these jerseys) and baggy Old Navy carpenter pants.  You can usually count on them being in at least three fantasy football leagues and they can quote statistics faster than the 23rd Psalm.  All of this is relatively harmless in itself I suppose, but the problem as I see it is that this sub-culture, Meathead Christianity, is seeping into many of our churches.  It is visible in certain institutions that have “small groups” where not only might there be a Bible study but also a fantasy football league, and some churches even time their services in such a way as to make sure that people will be able to make it home in time for the game.  Sadly, I’ve even seen pastors themselves preaching their morning sermon in jeans…carpenter jeans.

In all this, where is the Gospel?  I fear that Meathead Christianity is becoming indistinguishable from how we present the Gospel in our churches.  I mean, I know that there is no culture free zone, and that we’re always situated, but as a young, restless and Reformed Christian trying to maintain street cred with the likes of D.A. Carson I feel that the time has come for me to spend thousands of dollars creating an elaborate website tracing the obscure history and rise of Meathead Christianity.  This website will have at least three pages dedicated to the various types of Meathead Christians, and by this I mean dividing them up into categories of “stupid,” more stupid,” and “rich.”  Several months after I debut this site it will be announced that I have a huge book deal with Zondervan to write a book dedicated to my ever increasing fear that the Gospel is being compromised by Meathead Christians.

I also have an interview with a known Meathead Christian that I hope will elucidate this problem:

Me – Greetings, Hunter.

Meathead – Yeah, uhhhh, hi.

Me – So Meathead…

MH – Hunter

Me – Right.  As I was saying Hunter, when did you start identifying as a Meathead?

MH – Wait, what?  I’m not a Meathead.

Me – Ah yes, denying that one is a Meathead is a classic sign that one is in fact, undeniably a Meathead.  So Hunter, what are some of your favorite bands?

MH – Well I like Casting Crowns…

Me – hhhmmm…

MH – and Creed…

Me – AAAaaahhhh….

MH – and sometimes I admit I even listen to Nickelback.

Me – HAH!  Meathead.  Tell me Meathead…

MH – Hunter!

Me – Hunter…tell me Hunter, are those baggy carpenter jeans?

MH – Huh?

Me – and are those in fact Nike Courtair Ballistech 2.2 tennis shoes?

MH – Yep, got ’em at Footlocker

Me – *psha* Predictable.  Do you like Brett Favre?

MH – I’d really like to know where this is going.

And it continued very much the same way.  Plainly, on account of his shoes, his pants, where he shops, what music he listens to, what football players he likes, it should no longer need explaining that Meathead Christianity is in fact simply trying to be cool among fantasy sports players and high school jocks.

What we need to do is make sure that we’re preaching just the Gospel and not worry about trying to be “cool,” or with the “in” or “jock” crowd.  This is all a huge distraction from the real task at hand, bitching about “emergents” and promoting the Gospel as properly proclaimed by Wayne Grudem, D.A. Carson, John Piper, Mark Driscoll, Kevin DeYoung and Al Mohler.

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17 Comments

  1. I loved this! Although, I am confused and scared, because I border on qualifying via enjoyment of football, but am absolutely and emphatically not a theological disciple of many of the scholars above (and I realize I am profaning the word “scholar” here by applying to a group that includes John Piper).

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  2. i agree this is becoming a problem – people are starting to confuse “engaging the culture” with proclamation of the gospel…. and even the gospel with a certain way of believing and so on. it’s tragic really.

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  3. Concerning: ” Sadly, I’ve even seen pastors themselves preaching their morning sermon in jeans…carpenter jeans.”

    Liturgical vestments tie the clergy to the third to ninth centuries. For some people that is spiritual and ties them to the historical church. What has puzzles me is if it is good for the clergy to wear liturgical vestments, why don’t all the worshipers wear them? To me, vestments are a dividing line just like the communion rail in some churches. They separate worshipers from ready access to God and His altar. They represent taking the priesthood out of the hands of the people.

    Protestant pastors that dress informally during services are also making a statement. They are attempting to separate themselves from stuffy legalism and irrelevant religion. They are saying we are all in this together and we are the same. These pastors are saying I am not more special than you; you can access God just like I do. It is an informal way to encourage the priesthood of all believers. We live in an age where many adult males do not own a suit or even a sports coat . . .

    Well I have to agree, carpenter jeans are going a bit too far, but that is MY cultural perspective. I have preached in places where dogs, chickens and pigs wonder through the congregation and by the pulpit but have seen many people make commitments to Jesus in these places. And it happened without my wearing a suit or vestments.

    The diversity in the church universal is really a beautiful thing.

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  4. I don’t understand – isn’t the over the top tone, rather offensive generalizations, etc… indicative that this post is satirical? I don’t have any beef with pastors wearing jeans!

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  5. I personally think fitting in has it’s advantages to winning souls. Paul even said that he became a jew to win the Jews and went to those without law as without law to win those without law. Sometimes if people identify with us, they are more likely to listen to us. I see an advantage in being able to join those who wear carpenter pants and like football, that we may win them. All types of Christains are needed.

    Reply

    1. “Bible Study” – I am happy you found our site but you should know this blog piece is a satirical take on Brett McCracken’s critique of what he calls “Hipster Christianity.” I’m not sure the model of evangelism you seem to be advocating demonstrates anything like authenticity but either way, the post is not intended to be taken ‘seriously’ on a ‘literal’ level.

      Reply

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