Monday, November 24, 2008

The Gospel in Three Minutes

Today I came across an interesting video in which James Choung (author of True Story: A Christianity Worth Believing In) summarizes the Gospel in 3 minutes. I generally am not a fan of this sort of thing, in part because something so short almost always tends to grossly oversimplify. But this video is quite good. In fact, it could almost be taken as a summary of the main thesis of N. T. Wright's book Simply Christian.

Check it out:

Then check out the sequel:

In an interview with Christianity Today, Choung explains why he calls his diagram "The Big Story":

I call the diagram the Big Story because it sums up the plot points of the larger story in which we live and breathe. The most essential parts are the phrases: designed for good, damaged by evil, restored for better, and sent together to heal. They follow the biblical narrative: creation, fall, redemption, and mission.

And he continues:

These tools obviously aren't magic wands that will automatically cause someone to pledge allegiance to Jesus. But they are aids that offer a clear explanation in a memorable format. And when we're nervous, having something to hold on to will help us be clear in what we present. Even if we don't use the tools themselves, they give us helpful reminders to know what's essential in a presentation and what's not.

I think of them as modern-day iconography. Icons and stained glass windows helped preliterate Christians understand biblical stories and themes. Evangelism diagrams have the same function today: they help us understand the core message of the faith.

For more, go to Choung's blog "Tell It Slant".

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