Home > Uncategorized > Fors Clavigera: On Sportianity: Whence Our Assimilation?

Fors Clavigera: On Sportianity: Whence Our Assimilation?

I would like to focus on just one theme from his book and his talk tonight: the overwhelming and disheartening extent of evangelicalism’s accommodation and assimilation to the athletic-commercial-entertainment complex that has captivated sport all the way down to Little League…

The issue is the reductionistic, non-holistic understanding of salvation that is at the core of evangelical piety. If salvation is basically and ultimately about Jesus & me—about “my own personal relationship with Jesus”—then salvation is a kind of private commodity which (a) doesn’t really touch other spheres of life and practice and therefore (b) can also be accommodated to any other practice (Ultimate Fighting for Jesus!). In other words, this “Gospel” can instrumentalize all sorts of cultural practices without question as strategies to press for individual, private salvation. Most significantly, this yields a Christianity that is easily tethered to American civil religion…

In sum, what I think evangelicalism lacks is precisely an ecclesiology, a robust understanding of the church as that community, that “nation,” that is called to embody a way of life and instantiate a vision of flourishing that runs counter to the disordered kingdoms of this world (and surely contemporary sport is one of those kingdoms).

via Fors Clavigera: On Sportianity: Whence Our Assimilation?.

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