I’m having a dilemma over labeling products as being Christian. I am told that an object cannot be a Christian object, only people can be called Christian. One man I know goes so far as saying he is a “Jesus follower,” because the name Christian has become tainted by misuse over the past several years. Some of this is new to me, but people have had trouble selling products that are labeled as having Christian content. One would think that would make it desirable. But there are a whole bunch of people who hate that name.
Then there are the opposing group who wants their particular brand of theology or denomination declared. I live in the Bible Belt where we try to carve up our preferences, and the rule-of-thumb is “live and let live.” In other words, be good neighbors, but don’t infringe on another denomination or non-denomination, whatever the case might be. Kinda reminds me of “don’t ask, don’t tell” philosophy. But there is another world out there that doesn’t believe in God, and ridicules anyone that does, saying they need a crutch to help them live in security. Hogwash, I say. My relationship with God is so real that to deny His existence would be about the same as denying my mother existed.
An example of products that are having this dilemma is in the gaming world. I belong to a Christian Gaming Developers group where developers are making games with scriptural content for the Body of Christ, yet they are getting resistance for declaring it as such. It will hurt sales, they know. Yet one says, “I will declare that it represents Christ, because that is what it is.” How sad that would even be a problem. The Christian community needs to check out these products and support such games for their children. Some of them are Bible stories, for criminy sakes! And who haven’t seen teenagers playing games everywhere they go. Knowing they can have a choice about how they spend their time on games would be very welcome to most parents.
So I think farther about the Christian dilemma, and see there are different religious categories across the world: Judaism, Muslim, Buddhism, Christianity, and more. We can’t change the category name of Christianity because it is tainted in modern usage, can we? One solution would be to declare Christianity a state religion and simply shoot anyone who spoke ill of it. Couldn’t do that because of religious freedom. Could we possibly accept “Diversity amid Unity?” That phrase has been thrown around from time to time, but the world seems to not like that idea very much.
About the necessity of describing a product in generic terms, that might be a clever way to get someone to like the product before they make an instant negative judgement, but I don’t like it. An acceptable category is “family friendly” that is being used.
Several game developers are hard at work trying to come out with products that will start a new trend, “Christian games are cool!” I would like to dream that will happen. With games, and with other products that present good wholesome values.