Thursday, April 12, 2018

The American Church Is Mostly Powerless In Influencing American Culture

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Western Michigan shoreline
If I am conformed to the pattern of this world, then I will be rendered impotent when it comes to influencing culture. 

The American Church is mostly impotent when it comes to influencing culture ("the world"). Yes, there are pockets of Jesus-followers making a difference. But the American Church is not an issue for most people. We are not part of the discussion. 

Why not? Arguably, this is because the followers of Jesus are following the ways of the culture than they are following Jesus.

Consider this argument:

1. Only if the American Church is conformed to Christ will it influence (change) American culture.
2. The American Church is not influencing (changing) American culture.
3. Therefore, the American Church is not conformed to Christ. (Again, mostly.)

This is what writers like Os Guinness have been saying for some time. He writes:

"A striking symptom of the church’s problems in the West today is the fact that in a country such as the United States, Christians are still the overwhelming majority of citizens, but the American way of life has moved far from the way of life of Jesus—which means simply that the Christians who are the majority are living a way of life closer to the world than to the way of Jesus. In a word, they are worldly and therefore incapable of shaping their culture."

(Guinness, Os. Renaissance: The Power of the Gospel However Dark the Timesp. 60)

My proposal to change this is in Leading the Presence-Driven Church.

My other book is:

Praying: Reflections on 40 Years of Solitary Conversations with God

I'm working on:

How God Changes the Human Heart

Technology and Spiritual Formation