Friday, October 23, 2009

10 Most Over-Rated Things in the World

#10 Corporate Protocol - minimal value if done, maximal damage if left undone

#9 Bared Flesh as a Sex Appeal Source - it's not what you expose, it's what you have; in sex as in much else, less is more.

#8 Tourist Attractions - holiday brochures are written by biz-people, remember that...

#7 Meetings - 'nuff said.

#6 School Examinations - we really don't need whole generations of GAME-SHOW experts; we need more REALITY-TV players; different skill-sets entirely. (Note: I'm not endorsing reality shows but the superiority of the skills required to win them over against the speed-recall 'expertise' demanded to beat the other guy with the buzzer)

#5 Democracy - "will of the people"? only in politics...

#4 Biblical Exegesis - you've got the author's intentions, the reader's contentions, the world-behind, the world-in-front, the editing process, form problems, textual genres, etc. and when all that is done (which it never is) and ASSUMING two experts can agree (which they almost never do), one still has to ask, "So? What now?"

#3 The Internet - bubbles, time-wasters, trash, spam, overload. The only thing harder than finding a needle in a haystack is to find consistent purpose and enrichment on the WorldWideWeb.

#2 Answers - too many, too poor, too proud...

#1 Tomorrow - and I don't mean the weatherman's report...I mean all the Present(s) and friendships we've sacrificed because we couldn't stop obsessing about the next 24 hours, and the next, and the next...Tomorrow the concept is the human miracle and its curse.


Pastor Thomas said...

Sorry brother, as a theologian i have to disagree with #4 biblical exegesis as overrated! :-p

alwyn said...

Haha, I'd be concern if many ppl *did* agree!

on the other hand, one of the 'candidates' for this list was Agreement itself. we simply don't have to in order to:

- move forward
- stay friends (even good ones)
- work together
- think creative (in fact, often Agreement 'blocks' creativity!)
- etc etc etc

GinaP said...

Oops - I do agree with #4 partially.

ju & kae said...

Hi al, me too as in I don't think biblical exegesis is overrated, in fact I think it's not taken seriously enough, sure we are far from perfection, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't strive for it. Have you tried Gordon Fee's How to Read the Bible for all its worth?

If we don't do exegesis, then really we make a mockery of what we believe, because in fact, we won't know what we believe, and that would be sad. Instead, we should be humble students and seek to understand what the bible says, and wants us to do. That would be the honest approach, and again it's not WHO is right, but WHAT is right. Hope I make sense!

alwyn said...

hi Kae, yes i've read Fee's book; but pls note that when i say something is 'over-rated' i'm not saying that we should not do it. I'm saying that:

- too much reliance has been put on something which has far less 'cash-out' value than commonly imagined

- we have to rethink the benefits and approaches to said item

As for our beliefs, remember that MANY Christians have diverging beliefs - so much so that the question, "What does this passage say?" is really saying instead, "Who is reading this passage? And for what end?"

Of course it's important to continually seek to discover WHAT is right, but I believe that the WHO, HOW, WHY and WHAT FOR of exegesis is even more important, esp. in a world with a plurality of communities/worldview/contexts, etc.

Timothy P said...

I agree with your last comment on understanding the WHAT FOR of exegesis. I believe it was Douglas Stuart, co-author of Fee's book, that said that the goal or result of learning exegesis should be of genuine practical value, or applying its benefits to preaching/teaching, and I would add applying to life itself.

In the same light, I believe sometimes Application is over-rated. I suggest that there needs to be a good, balanced, solid approach to both. Too many preachers today focus on Application, to the dismal regard and handling of the biblical text.

alwyn said...

Hi Timothy, thanks for the comments.

I confess I'm not convinced that 'application' is over-rated because how many christians are living out the power/beauty of love and the way of the Cross? So many Christians know about the Bible, the doctrines, but how many have lived in such a way that the world 'sees' us as walking/loving replicas of Christ?

In fact, ask the average dude on the street what they think of Christians, and isn't the std answer along the lines of, "Oh, they're hypocrites".

In a word, we're FAR from a robust ortho-praxy *partly because* somewhere along the tradition we've been so pumped up with 'believing right' that 'living right' has been relegated.