I recently saw a Louie Giglio video called, “How Great Is Our God.” Someone had shared it with me saying, “It’s the most powerful message I’ve ever heard.” So I was curious. In the beginning of the video Louie explains how small we are compared to the largest stars known to man. He then spends a good deal of time talking about ‘Laminin,’ an essential protein that holds the human body together. Warning: spoiler ahead. The climax of all of this is to point out that laminin is in the shape of the cross. That’s it. Were you impressed? I guess I didn’t set it up well. Don’t worry, I wasn’t impressed when I saw the video myself.
A few observations. First of all, no one is questioning Louie Giglio’s passion. He is one of the most profound communicators I have ever heard. His charisma is overwhelming. He’s like a rock star without the music. It’s no wonder that he draws crowds of thousands of young people. Secondly, his purpose is to get people passionate. I can agree with that. But what is he trying to get them passionate about? According to his website, it’s about knowing God. Last week we discussed the prerequisites of knowing God require reasoning, faith, and trust. This week we’ve been talking about passion and motivation to knowing God which requires a desire for truth, a desire for God, and today, a desire for His Word.
Here is where I have a minor problem with the “How Great Is Our God” speech – it’s attempting to get people excited about knowing God without using any of the prerequisites or properly founding their pursuit on solid ground. Yes, there was a verse loosely tied in to the biology lesson, but if the purpose was to motivate people to know God it didn’t bate them with the only source we have for truly knowing Him. You’re not going to convince a child that fish is good when you start feeding them frozen fish sticks. We have to ask the question, what are you saying that the world can’t say to themselves?
So what is everyone so excited about? I call this the campfire experience. It’s when you make a decision based on a great deal of prodding and emotionally charged rhetoric that quickly fades off. If everyone was still living for the LORD who went to a Louie Giglio or even Billy Graham concert, then why is the church in such disrepair? Where are all of those believers today? Their should be thousands of them in every church, but their aren’t.
I submit, that although these methods are attempting to motivate people to be passionate about pursuing God, they are failing to offer a firm foundation in which they can do so without their burning out and hardening their hearts. If anything, it only creates a inferior faith that has no direct connections with truth found in God’s Word.
I’m not saying that arguments and speeches like this one aren’t encouraging. They are. But shouldn’t we want more? Peter tells us to desire the Word like a new born baby desires milk. We’re supposed to cry when we don’t get it. We’re supposed to tantrum when we don’t get the nutrients we need. Instead, we have substituted divine revelation for general revelation. It’s no wonder that spiritual babies are not growing up to be spirit filled adults.
Now, I’m not advocating for the opposite extreme where the pastors make their preaching extra dry like a bitter martini. When pastors do that and people don’t see the beauty and power in Scripture, there is nothing to inspire them to seek after God. Too many Christians that have spent a great deal of time studying the Bible walk around like they’ve been sucking on lemons most of their life. The Bible is the most lively text in the world, and those who read it should emanate with the brightest light, not look like an old shriveled up seminary professor.
Perhaps, one of the reasons why young adults aren’t attracted to the gospel is because they are only given two flavors. You either get the emotionally charged side that appeals to nature and science, which the world debunks, or you get the sad sorry lot which don’t get out much. Out of those two options, I’m not surprised the Christian faith is losing ground.
Cultivating an atmosphere where people develop a real desire to seek after God does not happen over night, or at a rally for that matter. Perhaps that’s why we don’t do it. It takes too much time. To really motivate pure passion for God requires something called discipleship. It demands that someone invest a good chuck of their life and time into another person’s life. That doesn’t happen at large rallies, on podcasts, or youtube videos. That only happens in the flesh, one on one, and no smoke and mirrors.
So, what about you? What motivates you to get into the Word. I know I got off course a bit today, but do you have a desire to know God through His Word? What keeps your quiet time going three weeks after the campfire service, church rally, or concert? Who’s life are you pouring yourself into?
Here’s a much more thorough argument for why Louie Giglio’s message lacks substance from the guys at Answers in Genesis.