Last night at our REACH group, we studied 1 Corinthians 6:12-20, where I taught on “What Slogans Say About Our Worldview.” In 6:12-13, the Corinthians church bandied about two sayings that summed up their thinking:
- “All things are lawful for me”;
- “Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food.”
The Roman culture believed that our desires and cravings should be indulged and gratified. If one is thirsty, you get something to drink to the limit. If one is hungry, gluttony is permissible! If one has a certain sexual appetite, then gratify that desire ASAP.
The advertising slogans and common sayings of our day speak much about how we view life. Consider this website which gives their top ten advertising slogans of all time:
- “A diamond is forever” (DeBeers, debuted 1938);
- “Just do it” (Nike, debuted 1988);
- “Got milk?” (California Milk Processor Board, 1993);
- “Where’s the Beef?” (Wendy’s, 1984);
- “Great Taste, Less Filling” (Miller Brewing Company, 1975);
- “Don’t Leave Home Without It” (American Express, 1975);
- “Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hands” (M&M, 1954);
- “Does She … Or Doesn’t She?” (Clairol, 1957)
- “You’re in Good Hands with Allstate” (1956);
- “We Try Harder” (Avis, 1963)
These slogans speak to various mindsets in our culture that may or may not be valid. For instance, the Wendy’s insanely popular commercial “Where’s the Beef?” Check out the original advertisement:
Now what does this speak to? A common problem with burgers back was the fact that they were advertising hamburgers, but giving very little … hamburger. It was unfair and unjust, speaking to a deep-seeded notion that we have as image-bearers of God for honesty and fair play—yet in a sinful world, we recognize this doesn’t always happen.
What about the Miller Lite commercial? “Great Taste, Less Filling.” Does this speak to where we want all the great effects of this beverage without the consequences of that side effect of ‘beer belly-itis’? Could be. It’s the same effect as diet drinks, which provide the caffeine without all the sugar. This does speak to the notion of how we do want to indulge in whatever behavior we like but without the consequences of that sin.
What about the Clairol commercial?
We all fight aging, even if we do not externally act on it or not. Through clothing, exercise, dieting, or other methods such as this, we have been taught that aging should be fought, not embraced. Proverbs 16:31 says, “Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life.” Proverbs 20:29 says, “The glory of young men is their strength, but the splendor of old men is their gray hair.” Our culture says, “Age bad.” Scripture says it’s a glory. Let’s beware the subtle messages.
Any other slogans come to mind that speak to how our culture thinks?