Since posting my Rant earlier I remembered a quote about cultural engagement in Deep Church, by Jim Belcher, which I read recently. Guess I like the way he describes the tension of sacred and secular and how his church attempts to overcome it – fulfilling Jesus’ words to be in but not of the world..
“Sociologist Christian Smith argues that evangelicalism best thrives when it is simultaneously distinct from and engaged with the wider society. According to Smith, this distinction and engagement is the most effective way to remain vital as a church. This is exactly what Kuyper was describing when he said that church is both institution and organism.
This is our goal at Redeemer Presbyterian Church. We believe we are to be a distinctive counterculture and should live in an alternative way. At times we need to be critical towards the surrounding culture. But this countercultural attitude must not calcify. A posture of negativity can lead us to be insular and tribal. Critique-though necessary to keep us from being pushed into the world’s mold-is secondary to our posture as culture makers. We should be known as those who make culture for the common good, for all people and not just fellow believers, culture that makes life better, whole, for the entire city. While we are distinct from the surrounding culture, we also engage it.