Why the Digital Age Needs an Analog Church - Jay Kim - Episode 41

Jay Kim is a graduate of Fuller Seminary and serves on staff at Vintage Faith Church in Silicon Valley, overseeing leadership and teaching. He's on the leadership team at The ReGeneration Project and also co-hosts The ReGeneration Podcast. His work has been featured in Christianity Today, The Gospel Coalition, and Relevant Magazine. He and his wife Jenny live in California with their two kids.

You can find Jay on:

 

Or check out his work at jaykimthinks.com.

Resources

Analog Church by Jay Kim

When the Church Was a Family by Joseph Hellerman

Letters to the Church by Francis Chan

Taking Church Online in a Coronavirus Age by Jay Kim (article)

The Christian Response to the Coronavirus: Stay Home by Esau McCaulley (article)

 

Episode Audio:

Bonus Episode - Is Digital Church the Right Response to COVID-19?

In this special bonus episode, you get a sneak peak at our conversation with Jay Kim, author of the book Analog Church and a pastor in Silicon Valley. In the middle of a culture filled with technology, Jay writes about the need for close relationships in the body of Christ. But in light of the coronavirus pandemic, how can the Church be maintain analog relationships when digital is the only option?

Chapter 1 - Why the Digital Age Needs an Analog Church

We live in a culture that is largely driven by technological development. The digital age is here, and it has brought us unprecedented access to information and to people. The values that drive this culture are speed, choices, and individualism. We want what we want now and in our own way. And for the most part, many of the technological breakthroughs we enjoy are great. Social media allows us to connect with friends and families across the world. The internet and podcasting platforms have allowed us to bring education and opportunities to learn to those who otherwise wouldn’t have the chance. But have we stoped to ask if all this technology is benefiting the church? Have we let the values of the digital age erode the Mission and values of the Church? Is our technology keeping us from connecting with others and doing the deep work that is required for discipleship? This is why we wanted to Jay Kim about his new book, Analog Church.

Chapter 2 - Can Churches Worship Online?

Worship is a response to the goodness of God in our lives. We can express that response in times when we're alone. But there's something about the gathering together of people that can't be replaced with a digital experience. The problem comes from our tendency to treat worship as something meant to make us feel good. If we view worship as something for us, listening to or watching a worship service digitally becomes just as good as worshiping together. But could it be that true worship is something each of us are called to create and participate in rather than something we consume? In this chapter, Jay gets to the heart of what worship is and the reason we were made to be disciples worshiping together side by side.

Chapter 3 - Can a Digital Church Create an Analog Community?

Why do you go to church? Are looking for something specific like a deeper life in Christ or a good environment for your kids? As difficult as it might be to hear, both of these reasons are rooted in a consumeristic mindset. The focus is on what the church can do for you. Or maybe you haven’t given it much thought at all. Perhaps going to church is simply engrained into your cultural identity and it has become part of your normal rhythm of life. Both of these approaches miss out on the purpose of gathering together as the Body of Christ. That’s why Jay Kim explains in this chapter, why we need to be intentional about creating analog community. This approach to church challenges us to be active participants in the community rather than passive partakers.

Chapter 4 - Is It Bad to Read Scripture on My Phone?

Step 2 in creating a lifestyle of discipleship involves practicing the basics, like reading the Bible. Throughout Church history, this meant listening to a person in front of us read or recite Scripture or reading a physical printed copy of the text ourselves. The digital age has changed that though. It's given us the opportunity to consume more information at a faster rate than ever before. So it's worth taking the time to evaluate how our reading of Scripture has been affected by these changes in technology. If we're called to have analog relationships in community and to worship in an analog way, how can we read Scripture in a way that fosters those analog relationships and produces transformation rather than just a transfer of information? In this chapter, Jay unpacks the value of a slower and more intentional approach to our reading of Scripture. In an age of twitter-sized bites of information, it's important to take time to read a longer work like the Bible not just for information but for transformation.

Chapter 5 - The Need for Analog Relationships

We need analog relationships. One of the first things God observed about Adam after creation was that it wasn't good for him to be alone. In this chapter, Josh and Chris reflect on what they've taken from the conversation with Jay Kim and the need for these embodied, tactile relationships that Jay describes. In the end though, it's one thing to know we need these relationships; it's another to put them into practice.