The Temptation of Cultural Influence

In We Are What We Behold, the editors of Christianity Today notes that the ability of Christians to influence their culture is a mixed blessing:

When in a position of influence (and in our better moments), we leverage power to better the lives of our neighbors. Cultural savvy enables us to successfully translate the gospel for a changing world. But it’s a double-edged sword—influence and savvy can also dull the gospel’s transcendence.

It offers this prescription for resisting the temptations that accompany cultural influence:

Scripture provides no systematic teaching for how we should relate to culture. But it does tell us what’s of first importance: “That Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Cor. 15:3-4). Scripture gives only one antidote for the temptation that cultural influence presents—worship of the living God. We are what we gaze at. “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another” (2 Cor. 3:18, ESV).

This seems about right to me.


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