Good Friday and good-ianity


This Easter you and I will come into contact with equinox Christians. That is, Christians who attend church twice a year: Chrissie and Easter.

It’s hard to communicate to these people the mind-blowing great exchange that is the gospel of Jesus Christ, isn’t it?

Why is it hard to get through to them?

Perhaps they are:

  • Fifth-generation members of Scots Church, Smithsville
  • Guilt-ridden to the core, and see the six-monthly trek to church as some sort of spiritual equivalent of QBE; that is ‘after-life insurance’.
  • Graduates of some prestigious denominational private school, where attending compulsory weekly chapel not only abdicated them of any responsibility for listening to any pastor for the next 50 years, but in fact made them spiritually superior to any pastor for the next 50 years.

Whatever the reason, I’m sure you and I will run into people on Good Friday who ‘don’t get it’.

I have an idea to help.

I have been using a phrase over the last couple of years and, by God’s grace, I have noticed that whenever I use the phrase, the equinoxers prick up their ears and listen.

How do I use the phrase in conversation? I’ll say stuff like:

“Yeah, I spent 19 years of my life thinking that Christianity was all about how high the mercury in my moral thermometer climbed… but a friend of mine helped me to see that what I was believing was not ‘CHRIST-ianity’ but rather ‘good-ianity’. He shocked me. I used to think that being ‘good’ was the goal. But being good is the goal of most world religions… most beliefs ‘good-ianity’. ‘Christ-ianity’, on the other hand, is completely different.”

I’ll throw that hook out there, wait a few seconds, pray, and see what happens.

The phrase ‘good-ianity’ does a few things:

  • It differentiates Christianity from the religion of ‘moral improvement’.
  • It stops people in their tracks. They have to take a few seconds to register this new word/phrase. It knocks them off guard. Most Abbotsleigh/Corowa School girls have heard all the Christian jargon, but not this one!
  • It gets a giggle; it is humourous for the simple fact it is unexpected. It swaps the word ‘Christ’ with ‘good’, which at face value should work, but after a little contemplation doesn’t.
  • It articulates very clearly the idol of the equinox (so-called) Christian: they want to be seen by others to be good. They don’t want to speak, think and act like Christ; they want to keep the goal malleable, loose, subjective. Good compared to who?

I don’t know what you’ll be doing this Good Friday, but throw out the phrase ‘good-ianity’ and see what happens.

Try it as you:

  • Travel home in the car with the extended family from church
  • Converse with other parents whilst watching the kids enjoy the Easter Egg Hunt
  • Sip tea on the lawns after the main gathering
  • Give the kids’ talk at Sunday school
  • Preach God’s word from a pulpit.

Come back to this blog after Easter and tell us all what happened. That’d be encouraging.

4 thoughts on “Good Friday and good-ianity

  1. Thanks Ben for the good suggestion!

    There haven’t been many comments so far, so let me throw in a relevant conundrum. 

    On Good Friday, the big well-known hotel straight across the road from our church is the venue for a community Easter event with things like face-painting for the kids etc.  Now our minister is suggesting we might go there after the service to be involved with the community.  But I’ve had one brother suggest to me that this would be quite inappropriate on Good Friday, which is such a “solemn” day for Christians. 

    Now as usual I can see both sides of this argument.  To the general public, Good Friday means about as much as the Queen’s Birthday holiday—it’s just a holiday.  So this would be a change maybe to mention to some what Easter really means.  But on Good Friday?

    Cheers,  Michael.

  2. Just in case anybody’s wondering, in the end I didn’t go.  The principle of marital harmony trumped everything else!!!!

    Cheers,  Michael.

  3. Good word… so true too. I think I’ll use ‘good-ianity’ myself. I’ve found that I try and communicate the same kind of theme, especially as Nurse I regularly have conversations with people who are close to the end of life, and rationalise how “good” they’ve been. Weigh it all up..

    I’m not really supposed to preach to patients but I do wind up discussing faith in God anyway in natural conversations…. I always say “you don’t get to heaven by being good… you get there by believing in Jesus and who he is…Christianity is not about behaviour, but a relationship..” however… I think Good-ianity might be another way to put it too.

    thanks for the idea.

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