The Vanishing Word (the Veneration of Visual Imagery in the Postmodern World)
by Glen Jones
Christianity has lost its spiritual roots because of our diminishing interest in the written word. Television has virtually replaced personal Bible study and family devotions. That, according to Arthur Hunt, poses a troubling problem in this postmodern world.
The ancient Hebrews received the written word from God Himself. As long as they obeyed the words given by God, they fared well. But when they went after visual objects (idols) rather than the written word, they fell into misery and woe. In apostolic times it was the written word of God that taught early believers how to live. The masses being denied the Scriptures characterized the Dark Ages. The Reformation burst forth with a new freedom when the Bible was given to the common people.
In relatively modern times, the American Puritans emphasized hard work, education, and attention to the Word of God. That philosophy became the backbone of the genius of America. This ingenuity brought advances in non-print inventions. The telegraph, the telephone, radio, motion pictures, and computers diminished the emphasis on printed media. Attention to the written word was also a casualty.
In the book's final chapter, the author advises us to resist modern societal pressures to abandon the written word. We must work in home, church, and school to resist pressures that diminish the power of the written word-especially the Word of God.