Jon Stewart is considered one of the most effective satirists today and his show is hugely popular, even as he raises some pretty controversial news. Bob Coy is widely considered one of the most entertaining preachers today who does not mince words when it comes to subjects such as sin and hell. Consider how they both use their gifts of humor in order to break through the barriers that often keep people from considering serious subjects.
Maybe you've heard some of the excuses I've heard:
1. Yes, it's an important subject, but I just don't have time.
2. It's depressing. Let's talk about something light.
3. It's not on the mainstream news, so it mustn't be very important.
Whether you consider this to be good or bad, people such as Matt Chandler of Campus Outreach have described this generation as the entertainment generation. And if you want to get your message across effectively, you might want to consider that possibility and that approach if you have a God-given sense of humor to use in the first place. American society has been dumbed down. In our fast-paced, entertainment society where people are trained to avoid critical thinking, asking people to stop and think logically about some important subjects that challenge their preconceptions is about the most offensive thing you can do.
The film clips of Jon Stewart and Bob Coy took a few minutes of time to watch, but they show how the use of comedy can be very effective in communicating ideas that challenge people's perceptions. In the context of his comic approach, Jon Stewart basically drops truth bombs and news that mainstream news will not seriously discuss. If you doubt this, Google "US congress passes law protective of Monsanto" and see if you find any US mainstream news covering this. You won't. I just tried it. Reuters came up on page two of the Google search and this international news agency is located in England.
Jon Stewart has offered more important news stories than the standard mainstream news companies will likely ever raise. Stewart highlighted this tendency of MSM news avoidance himself on previous shows, as noted in this linked article. And though pastors such as Bob Coy and Greg Laurie do have a great sense of humor and often use it in their sermons, they don't avoid dealing with biblical explanations of important subjects such as sin and hell.
Psychologists have pointed out, "Comedic news programs such as The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report owe their phenomenal success to the common desire to hear the truth and face the world, but in tolerable terms." People are often in a state of denial and it may take a unique approach to break through. The apostle Paul stated, "I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some." (I Cor. 9.22b NIV). And using a sense of humor to make your message more accessible would certainly qualify as an option today.
Personally, I believe there is a place for comedy in trying to get a serious message across, while I also believe it's important to try and promote the use of logic and critical thinking as well. What about you? Do you agree that America has been dumbed down and that we are living in an entertainment based society? Do you have any good examples of funny sermons or funny news that seem to be effective? Do you believe there is a valid place for this type of approach?
For more info on genetically modified foods, read the following:
New Info on Hidden Hazards of Genetically Modified Foods
For more on spiritual truth and salvation, check out a sermon by Bob Coy on hell:
What About Hell (sermon begins at 37 minute mark.)
Tags: Bob Coy on hell, Jon Stewart truth bombs, psychology of humor, truth and denial, comedy in sermons, comedy breaks down barriers, US MSM news avoids important stories, the entertainment generation,