I am growing more convicted that much of what Christian writers, myself included, spend time writing about will not stand the test of time. Christians need to know what is going on in the world, and Christians need to speak the truth into these issues. We need to understand how the world thinks and how they may respond to biblical teaching when we present it to them. However, in a world of hot takes and social media outrage, we must not get distracted from what is most important.
In the cultural atmosphere in which we write, it is way too easy to desire a larger readership for our posts, and it is way too easy to focus on topics and titles that will attract eyes. Because of this, it is also way too easy to neglect biblical truth to appease itching ears.
Writing an article on the most recent social media outrage will earn you a larger audience than writing a post on the gospel. Addressing the latest political upheaval will always garnish more readers than unpacking a scripture passage, but which is more likely to stand the test of time? Which has the greater chance of ministering to Christians 200 years from now?
I am not saying it is wrong for Christians to write on trending topics or cultural issues. I do it on this blog and even this article is addressing a cultural phenomenon. I also believe it is appropriate to use such issues as springboards to teach biblical truth and doctrine. But too often, we spill a lot more ink on these other issues than on the abiding word of God. Perhaps we should spend a little more time writing on topics nobody wants to read.
Not only will writing on such biblical themes be better for us as writers, but it is what the world needs to hear. I am reminded of an answer John Owen gave to a question about his eight-volume commentary on the book of Hebrews. When questioned why he spent so much time writing on scripture, his answer was, because it was better than anything else his mind might have been thinking about.
Christians should be socially conscious, and we need Christian writers to write on those topics. However, we live in a time when the biblical foundation needed to write and think through cultural issues has grown thin. Many Christian writers have lost the ability to think biblically about such topics because they have spent more time focusing on Twitter trends than making sure they understand scripture. It seems even many Christians do not have a Christian worldview. As R.C Sproul used to say, “Now counts forever.” It is an important reminder because too often we focus on the “now” but forget the “forever.” The word of God will endure forever, and most social commentary will blow away with the wind.