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Welcome to Fire On Your Head, the podcast designed to "kick you out of the upper room". We're a discussion and interview-styled show hosted by me, Steve Bremner, a blogger, author, and missionary to Peru. Join me as I interview authors and other interesting people, and sometimes post shows just by myself getting something out of my system. Sometimes I'm funny, sometimes serious, but hopefully you'll find it always worthwhile.

Apr 24, 2024

The picture used for this episode's publicity image or cover, depending on where you're seeing it, comes from an attempt to use AI to generate an image for me.

Using a photograph of a matapalo, or strangler fig in English, known for its distinctive characteristic of enveloping and ultimately overpowering its host, as a metaphorical foundation, I asked DALL-E 3 to craft an image with the following prompt:

Create an image of a strangler fig where the main tree is depicted by or symbolic of the church, being constricted by representations of entertainment, stardom, money, and fame chocking it out.

The result is compelling visual metaphor—a tree at once vibrant yet ensnared by the very elements meant to augment its growth. Incidentally, that's also the main theme of today's episode, but let's back up.

Does entertainment even belong in the church?

In this episode of the podcast, I share some of the deep sense of disillusionment that arises when respected spiritual leaders fall from grace, citing examples a couple of high profile example figures who've irreparably ruined their earthly legacies. Listen to find out, who, besides Mark Driscoll, I'm referring to.

Driscoll's recent controversies serve as a reminder of the ongoing challenges within the Christian community about leadership, integrity, and accountability as well as… what role, if any does entertainment even have in the church? Does it belong, or is the fact we're even debating this indicate other graver issues?

We also discuss the dangers of distractions and idolatry, and how "killing sticks," can hinder our spiritual growth and relationship with God. I hope to challenge listeners to reflect on any aspects of their lives that may be taking precedence over their faith.

Amid reflections on personal and collective failures, this episode's overarching message remains one of hope, redemption, and the transformative power of returning to the core of our faith in Jesus and an organic approach to Christianity free from the matapalo of the American Gospel Enterprise.

Books and Links Mentioned in the Podcast

The Imperishable Seed of Christ: Understanding the Believer's Spiritual D.N.A. by Steve Bremner

Screwtape Proposes a Toast by C.S. Lewis

Gospel Houses by Art Thomas

The Beast of Revelation by J.D. King

Mesmerize by David W. Edwards

Opinion: The Irony! Mark Driscoll Gets ‘Matthew 18ed’ for Slamming ‘Strip’ Act at Men’s Conference