Christ, Culture & Church


Image by OkayCityNate via Flickr

The last two days I had the privilege of sitting under the teaching of some people who have spent a lot of time thinking about youth culture and the church, and how we can introduce young people to Christ. I have learnt a lot and still have a lot of things I need to process & work through, and I’m hoping to do some of that here and present some of the more formed thoughts here, too. I’ll start with the basics of what is going on in my head, mostly stolen from the much more impressive minds of the people who presented papers.

Jack Gabig presented a paper called Exceeding Human Culture. It was about how we can study human culture by it’s artifacts, language and behavior and then he points out that the Godhead has his own culture… Father, Son and Holy Spirit with shared meaning. The artifacts of God are his creation, the language is the Word and the behavior is his mission. He told us about that divine culture and how we can live in that, and help foster divine culture in our churches… and in doing so, engage with worldly culture.

Matt Brain (coolest last name ever, I think) talked to us about the church. He quoted Newbigin a lot, and one that stuck out was that the church is the hermeneutic of the gospel. That is, we interpret – or I’d rather say, display – the gospel to the world. He talked about the beauty of fragility, and ensuring that we understand that we are fragile vessels holding the greatest news in the world… and to not try to be shiny, glossy and loud… but to let God be the centre.

There were two more papers, but my brain is a bit mushy and I’m making pancakes for dinner… thus, we’ll continue this another day.


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