Christ / College / Culture / January 26, 2006

What are You Known For?

John 13:33-34 says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

Jesus says that believers will be known as His disciples by their love for one another. Is this how most college students recognize the Christians on their campus? Why is it that believers are better known for what they’re against than what they are for?

Facebook is a great example. There are 224 groups on facebook that are against something. On top of that, there are 464 groups that have been established on facebook because of the common hate shared by their members for a particular person, idea or thing. Not to mention, those who hate facebook itself. Why is it so common for university students in general, and college Christians in particular, to take a stand on things they hate?

  1. It’s fun. Let’s be honest, there’s something enjoyable about banding together against a common enemy (the popped collar). Sometimes, there’s nothing like sharing a good laugh at things that don’t make sense (ugg boots).
  2. It’s shocking. Shock value is at a premium these days. Everyone is trying to push the limit, and one quick and easy way to do that is take stands on things you don’t like.
  3. It’s easy. The bottom line is that it’s much simpler to declare what you’re against than to defend what you are for. Why? Because bringing things down is easier than building things up.

When I think about this startling truth in college Christianity, I am reminded of one of Derek Webb’s songs, “T-shirts (What We Should Be Known For)”. In a world full of hate and anger, Jesus calls Christians in John 13:33-34 to be set apart from the world by their love.



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Jan 26, 2007

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