Jesus Saves
Jesus Saves
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The term “Bible Belt” is used informally by journalists and by its detractors, who suggest that religious conservatives allow their religion to influence politics, science, and education. And living here in the good ‘ol US of A for the best part of a decade now (I really should be heading home before I loose the brogue), I’ve come to think of it not so much as a belt but more of a cummerbund.


And with the proliferation of mega-churches and TV evangelists in the US, religion is big business and all about money. A lot of money. A serious lot of money, as in: “God is urging you all viewing to send Pastor Billy Bob your credit card number now…” And being a lifelong atheist, even I know what Jesus thought of money changers being brought into the temple – he drove out all who were buying and selling there.


It’s a lesson that could well have been useful for Mark Driscoll and his Seattle-based mega-church, Mars Hill, after “financial problems” led to a meltdown at church headquarters here in town. Lots of pastors and staff have lost their jobs, along with the closure of some of the church’s 15 “campuses”, all of which has resulted in a very bad press leading to a mass exodus of the flock.


Perhaps they shouldn’t have been hiring expensive marketing companies to further inflate the ego of Mr. Driscoll, and instead be paying more attention to the superb late 1950s standing “Jesus Saves” neon crucifix sign, that now sits rather forlornly outside the entrance to the Mars Hill downtown church, closed off by a wire-mesh fence?


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