Let’s call him Titus Sung. When I met him, he was a young student who had already spent a year in prison in his native China because of his Christian witness. Yet his face showed peace and joy that is rare among American Christians.
I’ve thought much about Titus’s background. Why was his faith stronger and more effective than almost anybody I’ve ever met in church? Did he attend a better Bible college? Had he seen better Christian videos? Listened to more anointed cassettes? Owned better worship CDs? Attended more conferences? Sat under a more gifted singles minister?
It caused me to formulate a principle I’ll call “Sung’s Razor,” a subset of Occam’s Razor.
Means of sanctification should not be multiplied beyond necessity.
That is, if the Chinese Church doesn’t need it to be like Jesus, why do you need it? If it doesn’t make the Chinese Church more like Jesus, is it possible that it doesn’t make us more like Jesus?
As William of Occam is supposed to have said, “It is vain to do with more that which can be done with less.”
The typical American youth ministry of the baby boom generation resembled an animal feeder (or maybe an animal trap). It was attractive as long as the bait didn’t run out. It was assumed that youth wouldn’t follow God without bribery, and even then, that they wouldn’t follow God very far. In a youth-obsessed, youth-glorifying society, the youth ministry was a holding tank for large children, with the vague hope that they would grow up someday, probably, inexplicably. But not now.
The lesson of recent history, however, have shown that baby boomers do not necessarily grow up. They may become politicians or even parents, but that doesn’t mean they become disciples. After being taught to live for themselves, to give God his fair share, and to keep the rest, they continue to follow the teachings of their youth. The church has become an endless youth group.