Today, we just brushed the surface of Culture Theory. Basically, we talked about how our view of a culture will establish our strategy for reaching that culture. Let me just basically copy my notes because they say it better than I can.
The Scriptural Perspective on Culture:
God created Adam and Eve – all are created in the image of God. God ultimately started a culture. Sin affected all of human culture – God was grieved by culture and decided to wipe out all but a small group. God multiplied human languages and scattered speakers throughout the world – diversity of culture was part of God’s plan! Abraham moved cross-culturally with a new message – his moving out was the start of a new God-ordained culture. Jesus was born into a specific culture – God used a specific culture to orchestrate His plan of redemption; the virgin birth, the census, the Roman empire with roads and general world peace. The Great Commission is the mandate for us to go cross-culturally – Jesus did not command us to change the people groups, just to bring the Gospel to them; no particular method of obedience, just obedience to God. And lastly, Revelation assures us that one day, representatives from every human culture will be present among the redeemed of God before His holy throne – still worshiping God in their own language!
These quotes sum up everything:
“There is also a synergy of the church universal, across time and culture. A local assembly takes strength in a world full of local assemblies, diversified in practice, united in the Spirit. The cloud of witnesses in Hebrews 11 joins a storefront congregation in the South Bronx. The South Bronx communion unites itself, by faith and in mutual indwelling, with an underground church in China, one in Christ with the congregants in the National Presbyterian Church in Washington, D.C. Charismatics join with sacramentalists, grape juice mixes with wine, drum sets harmonize with pipe organs, formality links with informality, rich unite with poor, and so on throughout the past, present, and future world of the redeemed and the assembled. In each local gathering a synergy of son goes up to God through Christ. Corporate confession, corporate prayer, corporate hearing (both of Word and homily), coroporate grief, corporate praise, corporate Communion, corporate giving of gifts, corporate alleluias, and corporate hush – all of these combined into a not-to-be repeated whole by the work of the Spirit.” – Harold M. Best
“We are not called to reform the culture as such. We are called, rather, to transform the world by living out a radical altyernative that the world cannot know apart from the lives of God’s people. Certainly we will influence the culture. How, in view of the resurrection reality can we not do so? For God’s people, influence on the culture is a by-product of their transformed lives.” – Alice P. Matthew/M. Gay Hubbard
“…It’s interesting to note in Revelation how distinct languages are still used in heaven. Our bodies have changed – we don’t even know what we will look like when we enter heaven! Our marriages no longer exist. Our sin has been completely eradicated. But, our languages, our nationalities, our culture, if you will, remains the same. God created each people group for a distinct purpose. He rested after creation only after He created man and woman and said it was “very good.” Just like men and women use their differences to glorify God, so also do different cultures use their differences to glorify God in a way that some of us have never seen. Worship is expressed differently in every culture around the entire globe and God is glorified in all of it. Why would He change that in eternity? More importantly, why would we want to change that now?” – Me.