What does it mean to be a Christian in media? Well, most people would likely give a long answer to this question. I live by the K.I.S.S. principle though (Keep It Simple Stupid), and so when I think about Christians in the media a second question arises:
When haven’t Christians been into media?
I mean, God basically chose the Hebrews/Jews to be his transcriptionists. He then waited to send Jesus until the common language of Greek was established as a trade language in a large part of the Western world so the good news could be easily communicated, waited for Roman roads and Pax Romana (μπιζέλι or the “peace of Rome”) which allowed for easy travel, trade and evangelism.
Then God says things like “I am the word, and the word was with God and the word was God.” God himself was into media – he was media! He IS media! He is all about communication. That’s his thing; wanting to connect with humans.
So spin the clock a bit and you get the printing press (again, in Western history – really the Chinese made this long before the 1400’s). So who made that trivial machine?
Then the telegraph? “What hath God wrought?” was the question of Morse when he invented the first electronic communication. I wonder if he was a Christian…YES.
Radio? Marconi had his issues, but here’s one of the first things he said on air in 1931: “with the help of God, who places so many mysterious forces of nature at man’s disposal, I have been able to prepare this instrument.”
Really it has only been in the last 100 or so years that Christians have begun to distance themselves from what, traditionally, was an integral part of their make-up.
Farnsworth, the inventor of the TV was a Mormon, though his first transmission was an image of a dollar sign – maybe that’s where things started to go amiss…anyhow –
Historically there are many things I’m not mentioning. You have the first newspapers, the early press in the U.S. with the Puritans, etc. etc. etc. And there are certainly exceptions to overarching trends, including that the inception of movies and film really didn’t cross paths with Christians all that much. But remember, K.I.S.S.?
Suffice it to say, historically, many Christians were into media because they were passionate about sharing the love of God. This required them to be media people.
So what happened? Why have we divorced ourselves from this thing that was so important to us for the last 5000 years? What are we afraid of? He is the WORD. Go and do likewise.
(Graphic from Premier Christian Media at: http://www.newmediacentreofexcellence.org.uk/resources/social-media-gods-tool)