Topic shift ahead...
This week on The Elephant Room our SS class is going to watch Mark Driscoll, Perry Noble, and James McDonald hash it out. The topic? Culture. Let's be honest. What they really mean is "the world" but in Christian circles "the world" is always and easily known to be negative so using a word like culture softens it a little bit and makes for a real discussion.
Ex: If I were to say, "How much of the world should we use in the church today?" Everyone would say none. BUT if I were to say, "How much of the culture should we use in the church today?" We would get a wide range of feedback. Thus, the reason why The Elephant Room used the word culture.
So, how should we answer that question?
The tricky thing about this question is that most of us want to answer it from the negative...or to put it another way. We have a better idea of what we are UNcomfortable with than what we are simply comfortable with. If I were to list a set of specific examples, then, we could say yes or no pretty easily. Still a wide range of answers but it would be relatively easy. Now, if I were to give a list of broad categories the answers would instantly get harder.
Ex: Should we use movie clips in church? Allow skits? Allow modern instruments? Allow songs other than hymns? Use books as starting points for sermons? Allow poems? etc.
If those were the questions I was asking, everyone would say....well what kind of_______? which______? etc.
See, we like specifics because we can up or down vote them based on our preference, conviction, or personal history. What we don't like is broad categories.
With all that said, I think we have it all backwards. We should start with Scripture, right? I mean, right? Shouldn't that dictate what kind of things we are or are not going to use from the "culture"? But that would take a lot of work! Yep. It would. It should. See, once again, we need to rise to the occasion. We have to stop getting together with our friends, our SS classes, our church leaders and simply saying yes or no to specifics and instead start with a foundational, Biblical understanding of what God says.
So, this entry will be a work in progress. As I have time, I will begin to compile a list of Scriptural understandings. I will start at the beginning (Genesis). It would be great to have some help. So, if you want to join this type of heavy duty work then please do. If you just want to say, I think this or that...well you can, but I've already said it: We need to do better.
Because of His Kindness,