Analog Church: Why We Need Real People, Places, and Things in the Digital Age

Reviewed by:

G. Connor Salter, Professional Writing alumnus from Taylor University, Upland, IN.

Title:

Analog Church: Why We Need Real People, Places, and Things in the Digital Age

Author:

Jay Y. Kim (foreword by Scot McKnight)

Publisher:

InterVarsity Press

https://www.ivpress.com

Publication Date:

March 31, 2020

Format:

Paperback

Length:

192 pages

OVERVIEW

Digital technology is changing the way we do everything. In many cases, churches have excelled at adapting to digital methods, creating everything from virtual church services to online resources that people can access all over the globe. But while digital technology has value, there are certain things it cannot replace. Pastor Jay Y. Kim of Vintage Faith Church considers how “going analog,” emphasizing physical presence over digital methods, provides particular things that individual Christians and church communities need to grow and mature. He particularly highlights:

  • The need to see worship as an all-encompassing and full-body endeavor
  • The need for physical meetings and communal events
  • The need to read Scripture the way people read physical books

This could have easily been a book griping about how technology is changing too much and nostalgia for how the church used to be. However, those kind of books usually end up being built on opinions and nostalgia rather than careful analysis. Kim aims for something more honest: the reality that even though technology changes many things for good (and for ill), there are some key things that healthy churches have always done. This approach allows him to take an honest look at what digital technology has helped the Christians do and what it usually hinders. He also does a great job of building on ideas that computer scientists and other tech experts have been emphasizing for a long time (the way format change what information you can give, the reality that technology is never neutral, and how quicker isn’t always faster).

Sound teaching on a vital topic.

ASSESSMENT

Rating (1 to 5 stars)

5 stars

Suggested Audience

Christians interested in the benefits and downsides of digital media and what it can (and cannot) provide churches.

Christian Impact

Kim touches on a variety of themes that Western Christians have often neglected – things like the need for community even when it’s messy, and the general fact that the church is most vibrant when it’s counter-cultural and a bit uncomfortable. These emphases make his central idea easier to understand and open readers up to a way of living that promotes great spiritual growth.

Analog Church: Why We Need Real People, Places, and Things in the Digital Age


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