All posts tagged: Culture

The Ongoing Intersection of the Gospel with Culture

By Dr. Michael L. Brown Three years ago, I conducted a poll on Facebook asking, “Should pastors and Christian leaders just preach the gospel, or should they also comment on relevant social and political issues?” Three years later to the day, I posted the same poll on Twitter. How did the results compare? Obviously, there is nothing scientific about these polls. They simply indicate how my Facebook and Twitter communities feel about the question. As for these two social media communities, although they have much in common, in many ways they disparate in their viewpoints and beliefs. How did the results compare? In 2018 on Facebook, out of roughly 1,900, 84 percent said “Gospel & culture” with only 16 percent saying “Gospel only.” In 2021 on Twitter, out of 889 responses, 79.2 percent said “Gospel and culture too” with only 20.8 percent saying, “Gospel only.” The overall differences were fairly minor, especially given the fact that many Christians are still suffering burnout from the 2020 elections while many others have felt the need to draw back from both politics …

Forced Dysfunction

For those who are parents or for those who grew up in some type of family, you know that a family needs certain things to survive. Daily routines require someone to take charge and in normal families the one in charge takes into account what is necessary for the entire family. For example, if one child likes donuts for supper, it is unlikely that every supper will consist of only donuts. Surrendering the entire family to the needs of one of the children makes no sense. Yet this happens often. I know a few families with several kids but the one that shows promise in sports or academics gets the bulk of if not all the attention. The other children feel less then when compared to that child. I have also seen cases in which the dad or the mom puts their career or their needs first and the rest of the family has to adjust to their schedule or their desires.   In these cases, families don’t work well. There is division and strife, …

A lesson to learn from pornography in video games: What do we really want?

What does a rich man want after he has everything he needs? More. We humans need to know who we are, and pornography can teach us that. I learned a lesson recently, when I found a video on the Internet, about problems with video games. Apparently, there are censorship organizations that restrict excess behaviour in video games. READ: Video Game Censorship I don’t play video games, although there was a time when I enjoyed flinging Angry Birds across the computer screen at other little animals. It was addicting. I watched the information video, out of curiosity, and I learned something about us. We like to mix good and bad; we like to do the wrong thing to get us to the right place; and we lie to ourselves. Those are all different views of the same thing. I was surprised to learn one thing about video games. When we can do anything, when we can go bad without restraints, we like to kill each other. Sometimes we settle for injure and torture. I used to …

Culture Relevance and Christianity

There is so much confusion about truth these days. Our society is fighting among itself trying to convince the other side they are right and they are wrong. This feels and looks like war to me. Ideological and spiritual war. A well-known quote, many attribute to US Senator Hiram Johnson, claims that truth is the first casualty of war. Variations of this sentiment have been around for centuries and has its base in the notion that we vilify our enemies and romance our friends. The US and Canadian media do a great job of vilifying Conservative Christians and our beliefs in the Bible as the truth. The truth of God, even the inconvenient ones, are replaced with acquiesce to the cultural desires. Do what thou wilt has replaced the ten commandments. We see this shift taking place in many societies around the world. Here in Canada, our culture values sexual identity issues above religious freedom. Definitions change to exclude traditional families and Biblical values. The core of Christianity is being attacked as the Bible’s inspiration …

Credit: Bernard Blanc/Flickr/Creative Commons

So What is Cisgender?

I heard part of an argument recently, and one angry person accused others of being “cisgender.” I didn’t know the full meaning of the word, but I understood part of the argument, and I knew the words were spoken in anger. I think this word is new, and I know it is often used in anger, to identify people who are wrong and cruel to others. It’s like ‘fascist’ or ‘racist’ or ‘white male’, a description of people who discriminate and are politically incorrect. We should know this word. But first, I have a small detour. A few days ago, an instructor asked several of us an interesting question, referring to “Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.” You probably know the pattern, at the bottom are poor or unhealthy people who are fighting for survival, and as we become more secure in life, we focus on higher priorities like love, and self esteem. RELATED: Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs This was the question: If you were given a choice by your employer, which one would you choose? a) …

Credit: Rosa Lynn A/Flickr/Creative Commons

People Who Pet Dolphins

Recently, Oscar winning actress Brie Larson apologized. In 2004, when she was 14, she petted a dolphin. Now she is building a successful career in Hollywood, and she has tried very hard to clear herself of any controversy. In this case, controversy is animal cruelty. Brie Larson is a dolphin petter. More correctly, she was a petter, as a child. Now she has apologized. Movie stars with fabulous careers have corporate teams of managers, publicists, and stylists; and a public apology indicates some alarm. This dolphin petting accusation seems to be a serious threat to someone. We live in interesting times. Now, the eternal and universal moral principles that underpin everything in society seem to last about a week. Tourists used to enjoy petting dolphins, and I remember when we were not offended by oil in pipelines, and when good electricity did not always come from windmills. A few days ago someone asked me to explain the words behind the acronym LGBT. We were having a conversation about transgender access to public washrooms. It’s hard …

Christians must adjust to our rapidly changing culture

Over the last 10 years, we have witnessed a dramatic shift in Western culture. The question is how can Evangelical Christians adjust to this change. Foxnews interviews John S. Dickerson author of the book, The Great Evangelical Recession. Dickerson says over the past number of years, Christians have focussed on changing government policy — in some instances spending millions of dollars in pursuit of this goal. Dickerson says for the most part that has failed and Evangelicals are entering what he describes as a spiritual recession. To pull out of this recession, Dickerson says Evangelicals need to focus on changing our culture instead changing government policy.