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Moral Therapeutic Deism, Say What?

Jessup Think
Jessup Think
Moral Therapeutic Deism, Say What?

Jackson Arnett sits down with Mark and Rex as the first Jessup student guest to discuss Moral Therapuetic Deism. MTD was coined by researchers studying the spiritual life of the average American teenager to summarize their majority belief that God exists but is not necessarily involved in day to day life. Goodness is the goal. The trio see if this research has stood the test of the last decade with some surprising ans insightful results.


Hey, welcome to Jessup think and I’m your host Mark Moore. Joined by my esteemed co hosts Really? Yeah Julius don’t go Julius. Okay. Rex Gurney. Okay, the third Julius. I have to I just can’t and and excited to be with Rex but also to to welcome our very first student guest Jackson Erna, welcome to the show. Thank you. And this is your last semester. Yes. So Lord willing, yeah, light is at the end of the tunnel. If we speak it into your life, yes. Speak. Yes, this is your last semester. Although we will we will still take your money if it’s kind of a catch. 22 like we’re not that sad one of those if they have to see you again. But we

will actually always taking money because you’re gonna get the Yes, right.

Yes. Right. Exactly. Yeah. So you can’t escape. You can’t escape. It’s gonna keep coming.

But we’ve both had you in class before and, and then Rex, you may not know this, I wanted to kind of throw this out. You know, Jackson, I have done a couple speaking gigs together. That’s true. And, and from that has kind of spurned maybe a side project, you know, it’s a side, maybe a side podcasts, you know, coming out in about 2029. Maybe, but we’re gonna it’s gonna be kind of like a coming of age Podcast, where we talk about really just kind of intense stories of middle school. So let The Wonder Years. Yes, exactly. Okay. And we’re gonna call it awkward transitions. Okay, so it’s gonna, it’s gonna be perfect. We’ve already trademarked it. We’re already practicing for that today. Yes, we are. Yes, we are. And that’s the other part of the packet is we’re only going to use one microphone, so we’re gonna have to so it’s just gonna be built right in. It’s just gonna be awkward transitions are already there. Yeah, it’s just a currently Yes. And, and that’s kind of middle school, that it is just so well. Awkward. And, and it doesn’t get maybe less awkward into high school. But, or even adulthood. Maybe you

just learn to cope with what makes awkward transitions universally relevant. Yes, that’s

true. It’s just there. That is part of our byline. Yeah, right now we’re writing it. We’re creating a podcast on a podcast. Wow. Yeah, it’s inception podcast happening. But we Bri on the show. We want to talk about a topic that I love the title of the topic. But it does actually connect with middle school and high school students in their maybe beliefs about God and in general. And that topic is called moralistic therapeutic deism. And the listener may have just done a double take and their phone or their car radio. Do you know what a radio is? Jackson? I’m familiar. Okay. Music, museums, cars. You used to have radios. You weren’t even allowed to choose what was on them. Like you could choose a station just happened this video station, they say also, that’s true. That’s true. But yeah, so you may have you may have taken a doubletake and say, Wait moralistic therapeutic deism, I think maybe I understand all of those words separately. But what? What do those words mean together? So Rex, why don’t you give us a good definition of Sure.

Sure. Um, this actually comes from a study that was done in 2005, about the religious views of just sort of teenagers in America, I assume some of them like youth grouped, and some writing just from the general population. But the findings of that were really interesting and they kind of go here around five sort of core beliefs that these these youth have about have about God. And whether fortunate or not, they came up with the title, moralistic therapeutic deism for this, and these are sort of the five beliefs. A God exists, who created an order the world in watches over human life on earth. And this God wants people to be good, and nice and fair to each other, as taught in the Bible and in most world religions, right. Yeah, that’s the essential goal of life is of course, to be happy and to feel good about yourself. God doesn’t need to be particularly involved in your life, except when God is needed to resolve a problem. And good people of course, go to heaven when they die.

Yeah, these these five kind of capture the the general beliefs of of those who were surveyed. Right, right,

which, as you’ve probably already noticed, is not exactly Orthodox Christianity. Right, sort of something else.

Right. And, yeah, and with editor is really interesting because when you hear those five, you probably think, okay, I can kind of maybe see where especially in in America, right, so this study was done out of UNC Chapel Hill, right? And, and looked at 3000 High School students and kind of ask them these questions about God and they kind of summarized it with ease. Right, right. And then they gave it the term Right, right. moralistic therapeutic deism, I

guess the moralistic because God wants you to be good. Yeah. So because you know, God wants you to be happy and deism because God’s not particularly involved except when you need God to be involved. Right? And actually, that that moniker for this moralistic therapeutic deism is kind of unfortunate. It might be better, to say moralistic therapeutic theism, actually, because people get confused a little bit when with that term deism because they think, oh, I don’t know is that like, you know, sort of come from the Enlightenment is this, the founding fathers is as Voltaire is, is people like here, you know, like them that were deists. And when I think of deism I think of this clock maker God that sort of winds up the universe and just goes off to lunch or something and never comes back. Right. And the universe just sort of just keeps on going along by this natural laws. And what it looks like these these, these kids believe is at least a God that, you know, you can listen and he’ll come back from lunch. Not too far away. So you know, he’s sort of at your beck and call kind of divine Butler. I’ve heard God called them Right, right. So we’re in genie of sorts, yeah, or cosmic ATM. There’s all kinds of ways you can talk about that, right? But in some ways, though, I guess, you know, I’m speaking as a historian here, but there there is some little connection, I guess, with the deism because what most enlightenment rationalist and I think you can say some of the founding fathers who had deistic tendencies, and believed is that God not only like order the natural laws of the universe, but God sort of encoded moral law to the universe to and so these are not relativists, you know, moral relativists at all and you can sort of see that little bit in this God wants you to be good, there’s good and evil, right right now and so there may be a little bit more of a connection with old time deism than then might appear at first. Anyway,

I think that’s a good distinction. Jackson, I we’re kind of talking about the when you think deism and if you think it’s a view of God being so far away, that he’s no longer present. You might think, Oh, well, then Wouldn’t that lead us to be less moral? Right, right. The cat’s away, the mice will play like, and and it is helpful thinking that even the deism of the enlightenment and that was was more of a God who instilled right laws and part of those laws were moral law. There was right or wrong. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And and with that, and so Jackson, we kind of we brought you on as an expert. In the first time ever. Yeah. First. Tell that to your parents. Yeah. That’s a resume booster. Yeah, it is out there. And we have it on tape. Yeah. I mean, it is on record. Check out Jessup think I am an expert. Boom. There you go. There you go. Mom and Dad. Yeah. And maybe even wife, although I would encourage you not to. Don’t call that. Yeah, don’t call it because there’s a lot of areas. You’re probably not an expert. Yes. And those will be brought comparison. But you’re in youth ministry right now. How long have you been working with youth?

I’ve been working with youth for a while. I mean, longer. Yeah, yes. But I’ve been working with the youth group for literally a year to today.

Oh, sorry. Today, we seem Wow, we’re gonna get you flowers. Yeah, we didn’t know this. Hope that after today. You don’t get fired?

Yeah. Yeah, right. Yeah, we want to keep it all for many more years

to come. So like junior high in high school, in a church setting for that time, but then I’ve been working with I was I started as a junior high youth pastor at my church, my senior year of high school. So I’ve been working with youth kind of ever since then then worked at summer camps and stuff like that. So it’s been a while that I’ve kind of been in youth ministry at this point. So so we just got Jackson here because he was available but looks like we struggle. He’s actually an expert.

Yeah, but he is a little bit of time. And that definitely is longer than Rex and I have been in youth ministry over the last four years. We you know, we both we both did our time. rite of passage today,

although as I like to say in it’s actually not an exaggeration, I was the world’s worth youth pastor, but I sort of didn’t know what I was doing and I didn’t go to Jessup and so you know, they don’t have the foundation. Yeah, the foundation so,

but we can get t shirts the world’s worst worst. That would be great. It would be good irony to you. I like Yeah, I’d like to wear it currently, you know? Yeah, that would set the bar low heavy expert then on the back Yeah, exactly. Exactly. come and go. Yeah, that’s right. But with with kind of working with youth, yeah, these kind of four years. When you hear something like this, right, when you hear moralistic therapeutic deism, what are you kind of seeing in students right now? Or do do these five things kind of maybe capture where students are at now? I know, we got about 14 years. Yeah, study?

Yeah, it’s kind of it’s odd, because I almost feel like the reason why this is such a perfect or maybe core belief for junior high or high school students right now, and especially high school students is they’re at the stage, where they’re still at home. And probably many of them, their parents are still like forcing them to come to church. And so they’re at the stage where they, they have this, like, parental influence, that there is a God and that like, we’re, you know, whatever church we go to, you know, like, this is kind of what we’re associated with. But they might not have actually had a, like, legitimate experience with God. And I. And that being said, they’re like, yeah, like, there is a God, but I don’t know that much about him. And he seems kind of distant, and he seems kind of far off. And, and a lot of that, I think has to do with the fact that like, even with how youth ministry has been set up for so long, which is something I’ve really been like, pondering and trying to kind of alter in how we’re doing youth ministry now at my church. But youth ministry has been like, catered so specifically to the student for fear that the student would be bored or, you know, whatever it is fill in the blank. But then you’re not preparing a kid to like actually go to actual church when they graduate. Yes, churches never catered to you. Yeah. So um,

yeah, we were like, that’s big church. Exactly. Yeah.

And you’re in like this, like little like fun church, right to play games and like a 15 Minute Message, you know, and so we like, divvy it up that way. And the message is always gonna be hyper relevant to your life and what you’re in right now. But then you like actually show up to church, and the pastor’s, you know, talking about something specific to young families or marriage, and you’re single, and you’re in college, and then it’s like, oh, this doesn’t apply to me at all right? And you have the tendency to be like, well, if it doesn’t apply to me, then it’s not good for me, because that’s kind of what we’re instilling. So, you know, there’s a lot you can say about that. Yeah, there really is. Yeah, so I’m a big shift for us. And kind of like our mission, youth, group wise, where I’m at right now has been to this idea of meeting Jesus, because I’m kind of I’m working on the premise that a lot of our students are yet to meet Jesus actually in their life, just because they know things about Jesus, you see Jesus encounter a lot of people in the gospels who know some things about who he supposed to be as a Messiah, and knowing things does not quantify the effect of actually meeting Jesus. And writing Jesus is the life altering experience. It’s not like, knowing things about Jesus. So you, you see, like kids who have grown up in church or been around the Bible enough to like, know things about Jesus, or even to say, like, yeah, I believe, like, God’s creator. And he’s, like, pretty, like he’s there sometimes. And he shows up, and he cares. And he, like, wants me to be a good person. But it’s actually in meeting Jesus, that not only the conviction of like, I need him is there, but like, the experience of His love is there as well. And so then the person of God and the person of Jesus become very, very specific. But a lot of the way that we do youth ministry isn’t catered to meeting Jesus. It’s catered to facts, and you knowing more and growing in your knowledge, not in your experience.

So another thing actually, that kind of dovetails with that. And Mark and I were talking about that before the podcast is sort of trying to answer the question of where does this come from? It’s like, if folks actually think this about God, it’s not what they’re hearing from the pulpit. Really? Usually. Yeah. Right. But But somehow, you know, they’ve got this idea. And, you know, so we look at the, you know, the villains in culture or whatever. I think there is some of that, but it kind of struck both of us that actually, probably, and I think you already mentioned this, Jackson, that this is kind of what all other parents believe, actually. Yeah. And so the, you know, it’s not just a youth of America thing. It’s sort of, you know, it’s more widespread than that.

Yeah. Yeah. And maybe you could say about, not just teenagers in the church, but also a lot of people who go to church and know facts about God. Maybe have get to meet Jesus. And I think that is a really good distinction to make, like this isn’t you can go to church, you kind of know about God, you obviously have a sense that you should be a good person and kind and, and we see that all throughout culture, right? When and that’s, and that in some level is a good thing, right? It would be way different if we were in a culture where it was like, you should be mean everyone. And like, we would be like in a bard room right now, you know, like, maybe the studio is protecting us. But it’s like, so there’s a general moralism like within within our culture, and a general concept of God. And so I could have that and go to church. And no matter what the pastor is saying, in, in the sermon, I could have this disconnect,

and what the pastor probably is saying, and we talked about that, too, is sort of the therapeutic part of the moral therapeutic deism. Yes, we are. So you know, that into that as a culture, but also in our churches. You know, I remember being taught, I guess, in seminary, and maybe some books I read that, you know, we have to preach to felt needs, you know, so so it’s like, you try to figure out what your congregation feels they need and you cater to them? Well, it’s like, you know, nobody seems to actually like need Jesus, they just need to feel better. And so you make them feel, right, yeah. And you know, nothing wrong with being happy at all. But it’s like, it’s not exactly the gospel.

Yeah. And it would be super easy to turn nearly any sermon to a Oh, like, you know, you can like filter out the need for Jesus in a sermon and be like, well, that’s what it looks like to be a good person. So I’m walking away with a better understanding of what it looks like to be a good person. And all of a sudden church just becomes class on being a good person. Yeah. Which then feeds this mentality all the more

and then you you come to the conclusion that well, if that’s all it is, then I actually I can be a good person without going to church. Yeah. There you go.

Right. And then once I graduate from class, you know, yeah, exactly. Right. from church once I learned this, yeah. And, and it does seem to be there’s, there’s this connection, maybe between the, like, moralistic view of I need to be good. And then that therapeutic, I think it is really important that they brought that in to the right. Happy, good and happy and yeah, that they are different. Right? And right, and we’re supposed to be good. We’re happy because you’re good. Like me? Yeah. It’s like, the idea is like, my happiness stems from being in and if the, if the church then becomes a place where that’s reinforced. Right, then then you do have you got God kind of slapped on top of of that. Goodness. And, and one of the things that I’ve found in in ministry, both the youth ministry way back in the day while this study was happening, before it was a very successful youth pass. That’s right. Yeah, I was. My, my first, my first position in youth ministry was janitor of the youth center. Yeah, nice. So I have that shouldn’t make you an expert. Right? That is, well, here’s what I’m an expert in. I’m an expert in the way Skittles get crushed down into carpet. And then you have to integrate it out and get it out. You have to scrape it out. So I have sure prepared you for parenting. did help, you know, and that’s where I you know, maybe speak that into some youth ministry classes here. Just like hey, what you need to do is crunch a bunch of Skittles down on this carpet and classroom and the whole class. They just have to get it out. And they have to clean everything. Yeah, stack the chairs. unstack them. Yes. And then set up the sound one more time. Yeah. And then that’s you’re ready, you’re prepared. The things they don’t teach you. That’s true is really true. We could have a whole separate class on the things you HAVE to code. Yes, ministry practical, the loving with that you’ve been sure and even being in the church. One thing that I’ve realized is you can like off all of these five, you can hold these things outside of the church. There’s so many families that I connected with that are good, and they’re relatively happy. And they don’t have God in their life. And so, if this has if this in any way has been a message that has been even just caught from the church, maybe not taught, you know, like, or sermons are probably more specific, but if it’s just caught from us in our in our normal lives, then it really does come down to like, Okay, then what, what do we have to offer them right? Like, if they’re like, wait, I am good. You know, I’m generally kind and I’m trying to be nice to my neighbors and relatively happy with my life and my family. Show me how show me where this God who Yeah, I think God exists. But, you know, not a part of my daily life and maybe when I get that crisis, right, I will come to church and oh, yeah, right. And yeah, I think I think it then does, it’s helpful for us, within a church to start thinking about that, because I often had to think about that with my, with friends, and maybe parents of my children’s friends being like, and actually they’re good, and they’re pretty happy. Okay, what, how is the gospel different than this?

Sort of what what they call it the kind of 911 phenomena, you know, after 911 for, you know, a few months, you know, church attendance went up and stuff, but Brexit kind of knew what was going on knew that that probably wouldn’t last, actually, because it was just a reaction to crisis. And then you just sort of get back to, you know, this therapeutic deism. Yeah,

that’s part of the tension too, I think is the question of is what we’re doing in the church feeding this? Like, is it something that we’re doing? Or is it that it’s like, it’s in the intention of people who are coming to church with this mindset already, that God almost becomes this puppet for why they’re being good? You know, they’re like, I feel like I needed to be better in my life, but I need a reason to be better because I can’t just like, you know, I can’t just like rally myself to be better. That’d be like, a weird thing. Right? Right. So instead, like, I’m gonna, like, show up to church for a couple weeks, and that’s going to like your, your, your, you know, your appointment with your therapist. Yeah, yeah. Yeah.

Are you like, trying to rally to eat healthy? Yeah, man, you know, I just have ice cream. Exactly. Like, yeah, you need,

you need a reason to be good. And God made it plays that role becomes this, like, you know, this, like stringed puppet that’s like, Oh, he’s the reason but he it’s really like, you know, I’m pulling all the strings and running God who I want God to be. But you know, it gives me a reason to be good.

Yeah, like, helps feed that sometimes to maybe this. I’m good. Therefore, God better make me happy, right? Like, hey, God, I’ve done all these right things as transactional? Where’s Yeah, and oh, yeah, exactly. Now, kind of where maybe, so this was, you know, the study was 14 years ago. So, a lot has happened in 14 years. And, and I still can’t believe it’s been 14 years since 2005. Because 14 years ago, should be the 1970s in my life, right? Like I should know not 2005. But with time has passed, and this kind of my question for all of us to look at. I know, deism may not be may not be the best word, but even theism like I think of say, if we interchange that with theism. So moralistic therapeutic theism? Do you think that they did that study now? Would the theism part still be there? Or would they have to qualify it at all? In in America, do you? Do you feel a shift? Maybe with students, you’re reaching or friends of students? Is there a shift even away from Yeah, God exists? to maybe a god exists? I don’t know if a god exists,

you know, the fastest growing and we’ve already talked about that the fastest, fastest growing religious persuasion, if you can even call it that right now are the nuns. It’s, it’s like, you have to actually, you actually have to think about God a lot to be an atheist in some sort of strange way. Right, right. I agree with that. I really, but it’s like, you know, I can’t even Rouse myself to think enough to be an atheist. So I’m just kind of nothing, you know? Yeah. And, of course, the big question is, you know, what has happened if something has happened in the past, you know, 14 years to make that, you know, to make this change into sort of something else? I, you know, I’m not sure. But then I actually, you know, don’t work with youth right now. So it’s been a while, even when I was pastoring years ago, I still did some, you had lot more, you know, connection with that. But, um, I think probably most kids would still sort of have a vague theism right now. You know, I think it may change once you go to college. I think that that, you know, right, is, you know, to where the vague theism becomes a vague agnosticism. And I think everything’s vague right now. Right? Yeah. It’s, it’s vague on both sides. You know? Yeah.

Yeah. And you see that Jackson, do you see that in maybe youth or especially then even in college, right. Yeah. Even Heaven forbid at a Christian College.

Yeah. I mean, I would say if this study was applying to, you know, people in their 20 somethings then you would have to qualify the deism or theism and say like, This is kind of what we’re meaning by this. And it’s very loose. And but I mean, I think it’s, it’s hard to avoid, like, it’s almost like Rex is saying, like, as a high schooler, who’s growing up in a home that either you’re Christian, you’re like, parents are Christians, and they are a church for some reason. Yeah. And they like hold this or you show up to church with your friend every now and again, or your parents don’t show up to church, but they still hold this kind of a view, then you just have to think about God a lot to begin to question it. And I have a student right now, who, when I first showed up to the church was like, really questioning, doubting her faith was like thinking about rejecting it, and is like, deeply into philosophy. So she, like really cares about this. And and then she like, it ultimately led her to like, No, I think I actually believe this stronger than I ever have, which is cool. But then she had this whole issue that she keeps talking to me about that every time. She’s like a very deep thinker. And every time her parents are like, What are you thinking about? She’ll tell them? And they’ll say, well, it’s something about her faith. Yeah. And then they say to her consistently, you are overthinking that, and she looks at them. And she goes, I think you’re under thinking it. And that’s like, the really interesting thing is like you’ve got parents who are under thinking it. And so I think the only way you would be able to qualify it in a high school setting is if you had a student who was, quote, overthinking it. And so you’re like, you really do have to care as a student a lot about gun to really start questioning that. But I think it’s more in your 20s when you’re like getting into college and things like that, that. And you’re starting to separate from your parents. I think that’s a big part of it, too. But then you’re becoming like this own identity religiously, as well. Yeah. And you look at this, and you might say, like, you know, my mom banked way too much on God to show up in these like different crises that we thought God was going to show up in and he didn’t. And so now I’m kind of like rejecting that. So then, like the theism deism starts to kind of lose way, I think, in that age range.

Yeah. And I think that is important to kind of know, that does seem to be within American culture in our 20s that we start even even growing up in the church, I think in your 20s, you start to to just even question like, Okay, what have I believed my whole life? What do I still believe? What do I know? And yeah,

I mean, it’s just sort of a natural. Yeah, making your own way, sort of thing.

Yeah. Which still brings me back to the youth ministry question to have, are we setting kids up in the way that we do youth ministry? Because we’re like, catering everything to them. And then things aren’t catered, and then they start? Yeah, you know, it’s really interesting that way, too.

Yeah, it really is. And I think that,

so I guess the solution is just really hit them with better apologetic arguments, right that way than they’ll never never, never doubt. Yes.

Well, no, yes, you’re right. Yeah. Take the phone go back to when we were kids. We had to be in big church where we are in town. And that’s where we drew. Yep. And that’s when you think, how is time moving so slow? How is it not 12? Yet, like, and then you get older? And you’re like, how is it already? 12? What is happening? How am I already at nine years old? Mike, this just flew by? Yeah. Well, but I think that’s a good place to kind of land to, in the sense of maybe thrown out some ways like, Okay, how, where do we go from here, like, this is? I think this does capture not only for teenagers, but it probably captures for a good portion of, of people in America, this idea that, okay, a vague theism that God exists. vague, he wants us to be good. And wants us to be happy. Yeah. And I’ll call him when I need him like, and so I think you’ve brought up some good points your accent of, of, Hey, how are we approaching this? Even in our youth ministry? And I love that idea of like, hey, let’s actually meet Jesus, like, and that’s maybe the difference too, like, you can have a vague theism. And then you have Jesus, here’s a very specific, yeah, a specific version of theism. And I think that shift is really,

really, if we make the goal not that God’s gonna make you happy and fulfill you and all of those things, but like, the goal is just for you to meet the person of Jesus.

What because it is just sort of, you know, teaching of atheism, then you really don’t need to go to church, which is historically I know, I’m going to push it back. Yeah, well, yeah, that’s why you’re here. But, you know, I, in my first church that I ever pastored, I noticed something really interesting after a while, so it was a small church in Oakland that had been founded in the late 50s and early 60s, sort of at the height or of the, of the 50s, revival of religion or whatever. And now those were the glory days. of the church, and obviously to hire someone like me, they were way past the glory days. And so when I first went there, you know, I mean, literally, the average age in the church I think was 80 or something. God did an amazing thing while I was there totally got not me. But when I got there, it was like that. And a lot of those folks had had started going to church in like the 50s and 60s, and now there were adults, and I’d noticed something after a while, it’s like I could I could talk about God. And that was cool. But once I started getting too much Jesus in there, people started getting nervous. And that just really surprised me. Yeah, it’s like, isn’t that why we’re here? Right. But I sort of noticed that actually, they kinda, you know, had been sort of what’s hot? Yeah, it’s sort of just a theism sort of thing, you know, and, and then I can see why, you know, the kids that went to Sunday school in the 50s, left the church in the 60s, in droves, because, you know, who needs a vague theism? Or at least who needs to go to church for vague theism? Because I can have that anywhere?

Yeah, yeah. And, and when you really start to focus on the person of Jesus, but I don’t want you to ever lose that thought, right? Because that’s another podcast episode right there. Because I’m fascinated by the transition from 50s and 60s, and the influence that still has on American culture. But as you focus on Jesus, I think it starts to maybe put into a better light, what the moralistic side is supposed to look like, right? Like that God does is calling us to be good and does have, but it’s positioned in a much different way with Jesus,

right? And it’s understood outside that when you look at Jesus, it’s so unattainable, right? moralistic standard. Yeah. It’s not like this, like super vague and loose. Good.

Yeah, I can kind of maybe do this. On my own is he even takes it to this level? Yeah, he takes it into a deeper level, when you learn it’s like and that you can’t actually meet? Yeah. Right. And unless you have you

thinking about when I was thinking about, well, what do you do about this? If this is a phenomenon, and what do you do about it, and I’m no expert on what you do about it. But the word that kept coming up, in my mind actually is very similar to what you guys have been talking about sort of incarnational Jesus is His incarnation of God in flesh and, and somehow, you know, incarnation in fleshman of God is, isn’t seems to me it is a good antidote to something as vague as moral therapeutic deism.

Yeah, that’s so good. Because he’s sure in the incarnation, he shows us how to be good. And as a different type of good or good, we can’t do on our own. He shows us maybe the difference between joy and happiness, right? that not everything is not everything is going to go as planned. And you might actually end up on a cross because he walks like, depressed all the time, too. And, and so it kind of puts a spin on that. And then obviously, the deism or fake or vague theism this idea that no God is here, right? I mean, he is, he’s literally here and moving among us. And I think that that is a great, great thing that the church can capture. And if we can become this our incarnational model, right of who God is, and I think is important. And again, coming back to Jesus in meeting

Jesus, right, which I think has to totally change or impact our gospel presentation. Yes. I think our gospel presentation right now is this very loose. Like, if you raise your hand, all of these promises are like coming to you, right? Yeah. And it’s like lineup? Yeah, this super vague, like theism that can come out of that. Yes. Our Gospel presentation is

Yeah, and loose. Actually, I’m thinking of I don’t know if this is actually gonna make into the podcast after the editing. But I was actually thinking of a quote that I, I actually have on a slide when I teach Christian perspective, somebody said, if, if, if you if you follow Jesus and don’t end up dead then then there’s something wrong. eventually be great is just it’s if you’re reading the book of Acts, it’s a serious thing. Yes. A serious thing. Yeah, it’s a serious thing.

No, and that’s good. And that’s a good good place to kind of land. Thank you guys for again, being on the show. Jackson. Thanks for being the first ever student. Yeah, be more. You know, boys are here. That’s right. Happy to have you back. As you know, we can celebrate your graduation. we all we all actually thought that Jackson had already graduated. Yeah, exactly. Yeah, we’re in that together. Remind yourself Oh, wait, I still have class still have class. All right. Well, I want to end today’s show with a new segment. And this segment has is made possible because you’re here Jackson, right? So we have we have a student and so this new stuff This new segment is called the student becomes the teacher. And we just want to give you a platform Jackson to teach us, you know, Rex Nye as as professors. We are lifelong learners, right? And we want to keep reading, keep knowing. So we’re also totally clueless as to exactly yeah, like most things, a little complicated culture. So we want to learn and we’re clueless. Perfect. That’s great Convo. We’re good. So maybe, maybe Yeah, like a phrase or something from youth culture or pop culture right now that that maybe we wouldn’t know that would be helpful for us to know. Okay,

well, well, one of the things that I was thinking about because even you and I were talking about, like maybe even like, what kind of reinforces moral therapeutic deism in culture for these and stuff like that. So there’s these things that happen on YouTube called vlogs. If you didn’t know that, okay, yeah. So a little familiar, a little familiar with YouTube so, so on YouTube, these vlogs happen, which is like a daily blog, but it’s a video so it’s blog and video How to like combination there in the name so it’s a vlog vlog. Yeah. And so the whole point of a vlog is like you splice your day together so that your day looks awesome. And you know, then you become this like social media influencer, because you are like, you’re like living in this moralistic therapeutic like lifestyle, where you’re being good, everything’s happy. And so like, people like really envy that because they want to live that kind of lifestyle. And these people don’t have jobs somehow, you know, and they travel the world. So sign me up. Yeah. So what do we how can we get a video camera? So um, so anyways, vlogs happen, but then on top of vlogs different people who like do these vlogs will do this thing called vlogmas, which happens around Christmas. And so then now it’s a video blog has now had a combination with Christmas and on vlogmas they will release a vlog every single day of December from December 1 to December 25. And on top of that, they will give away all of this like cool merch because another deal that these like, vlog people have is that they will, people will like companies will send them stuff for them to unbox on their vlogs. So then they just get a bunch of stars. Yeah, so they get a bunch of viewers like advertisement, but then they get free stuff. So they’ll give away all their free stuff for the month and so definitely got to get it free. So vlog vlogmas you splice your life together, you make it look awesome. People send you free stuff, then you are a good person and you give that difficulty that mark shouldn’t have much of a list for Hey, no, I

actually think your blog would be I would tune into your vlog. Right? Well, that’s that gives me actually insight into my 14 and 12 year old and what they’re doing all the time. And who they watch because I’m like, how did you even find this person? Like a random person with a video camera in Ohio? Never have to give them a Christmas present again. That’s true. Exactly. I get this tune in for vlogmas tune in for vlogmas Alright, so vlogmas you know this I think this episode is actually gonna be coming out in the summer so we’ll have to wait. Yeah, like six months before blobbies. Eager to maybe find someone to follow. Yeah. And then experienced for the first time in 2000. A lot of dedication that’s 20 blogs. That is that is that’s that’s amazing. Well, thank you. I feel I actually feel smarter. Yeah, you’re welcome. And maybe with my kids Tonight, I’ll throw it out like Hey, did you guys straight away? Yeah, no, I was thinking this year we could do some vlogs family vlogs family vlogging and they’ll be like, Dad, please don’t. Probably Yeah, probably. All right. Well, thank you for that. Thank you for listening to Jessup. Think Be sure to follow us on Twitter at Jessup think we would love to hear your thoughts on the episode and engage with any questions you have. Our aim is to provide a framework for further reflection and deeper exploration of these important topics. You can also help the show by leaving a review on iTunes these reviews help the podcast reach new listeners. Until next time, I’m Mark Moore and this is Jessup.

If you’re interested in learning more about Jessup, please visit us at William Jessup is the premier fully accredited four year Christian University in the Sacramento area offering over 60 academic programs in undergraduate and graduate studies designed to see every student equipped and transformed into the leader they are called to be as you go Don’t forget to hit subscribe and share so you never miss an episode. Thanks for joining us for Jessup Think.

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