I’ve always had mixed feeling about what I think of as the “Christian Culture Industry.” You probably know what I’m talking about: Christian rock, Christian books, Christian trinkets.
To the extent that these things can be used by Christians to deepen their experience of God, I’m all for them.
What makes my feelings mixed is the idea of Christianity mediated through commercially produced objects which have less connection to God than they do to somebody’s profit margin.
It’s therefore inevitable that I find Channel 54 (of the TCT network) rather bizarre. As networks go, it can sometimes be painfully low budget–most of the time I flip through the channels, it appears to be coming from the same set. Denominationally speaking, it seems that there are a lot of people coming out of the Holiness tradition. As for the political perspective… well… let’s just say that Pat Robertson appears in their news broadcasts.
A great example of what I find strange about it:
My wife recently allowed our children to watch a “Veggie Tales” video. When it ended, she flipped through the channels, stopping in shock and disbelief at channel 54. “Jim,” she said, “you have to come down here.”
I walked downstairs to find that some guy was singing on the instantly recognizable channel 54 set. What was he singing? Painfully Christianized tv theme songs.
“Baptist! I’m a Baptist!” to the tune of the Flinstones. Also, a song about how all Christians were part of the family of God to the tune of the “Gilligan’s Island” theme song. As I walked upstairs, I could here him singing something (my mind effectively repulsed exactly what) to the tune of the theme to Bonanza.
While I’m all for using the media to attract people to Christianity, I’m not convinced that that’s the likely effect of his efforts.