Reviving Sacred Words

Jonathan Merritt Discusses Talking About God in Times of Rapid Social Change

Jonathan Merritt

Jonathan Merritt, a television commentator and award-winning writer, spoke at Gardner-Webb University recently during Dimensions. He focused on ways that Christians can share their faith.

After moving from the Bible-belt to New York City, Merritt realized he could no longer assume his friends understood words like grace and gospel. His most recent book, “Learning to Speak God From Scratch: Why Sacred Words are Vanishing—and How We Can Revive Them,” was written from that experience.

“During times of rapid social change, many people, including Christians, don’t feel comfortable talking about God,” explained Dr. Tracy Jessup, GWU vice president for Christian Life and Service and senior minister to the University. “Jonathan hopes to ‘breathe new life into [our] spiritual conversations and lure [us] into the embrace of the God who inhabits them.’”

Merritt serves as a contributing writer for “The Atlantic,” contributing editor for “The Week,” and previously was a senior columnist for Religion News Service. He has published more than 3,500 articles in outlets such as “The New York Times,” “USA Today,” “Buzzfeed,” “The Washington Post” and “Christianity Today.” He regularly contributes commentary to television, print, and radio news outlets and has been interviewed by ABC World News, NPR, CNN, PBS, MSNBC, Fox News, and CBS’ “60 Minutes.”

Gardner-Webb’s Dimensions program seeks to enhance the spiritual, intellectual and cultural life at the University and to promote a sense of community.

Learn more about Dimensions