Summary: Does your church have the culture of Jesus? Our modern culture is shifting but to adapt too much destroys the mission of winning souls to Jesus..
Culture Shifts: Good vs Evil Kelly Durant
I Corinthians1:22 For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; 23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks[b] foolishness, 24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.
2. Today is Cultural Day celebrated by the Salvation Army in the Southern Territory! Here in Hialeah we are authentically culturally diverse with people from over 10 nations in our midst! We are atypical! The typical with most churches is they are predominately 90% white, black, Latino, or something else! Church, across the nation, is the most segregated day of the week! But you cannot stop people wanting to meet with those with whom they feel comfortable. It is natural for birds of a feather to flock together but a wealth of knowledge can be gained from mixing with those different from you and even better is living years immersed in another culture. I feel privileged by God to have gained 14 years of wealth in South America in 5 different countries that are not similar in culture, music, food, or political pasts.
Cultural events are an opportunity to get to know people from other experiences in life other than yours. I grew up in your typical mid-west American setting where 90% are white and I only met a foreigner, a Chilean, for the first time when my best friend had an exchange student live in his house. We experienced many funny situations because Fernando arrived not knowing any English and everyone had a laugh and a hard time communicating with him in the beginning. Many youth today go to schools surrounded by hundreds of others who are different and from other countries. But different is often either accepted and embraced or protested and mocked. Reality checks need to be done on the motives of either. Movies influence attitudes.
Have you ever noticed how jokes about another culture shape how many people may view that other culture? When I was young people use to tell Pollock jokes; How many Pollocks do you need to change a lightbulb? Five, 1 to hold the bulb and 4 to spin the ladder! The impression I had a long time ago I recall was that they must be pretty dumb, but I have read articles on the intelligence of different nations and they actually rate quite high in intelligence. Read about their fight for solidarity! One deduction I make concerning these jokes is that those of another culture concocted these jokes to counter the influence of them and to diminish their influence as new immigrants.
3. Today I want you to think about how you see other cultures, how others see your culture, and then determine what you think God’s view is concerning your culture. How is your culture influencing you for good or for bad? Are you aware of the strengths and weaknesses, the historical and current influences which overtly or subliminally influence and control your decisions, habits, and attitudes? How Biblical is your personal culture? To be counter-culture is often a positive, have you ever thought of that?
Today we are extrapolating the implications of the cultures using the example of what Paul said from his time: “For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom; 23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks[b] foolishness”,
Basically, the attitudes from his time still remain today! Paul was criticizing his own race! Today the people of the humanist secular type mentality who are resistant to the things of the spirit and the miraculous and think of themselves as logical and scientific, are basically the same as the Jews who wanted a sign to believe. We might compare this mentality to certain European or communist atheistic influenced cultures. There have been and there will always be people who are doubtful, unbelieving, unspiritual, and unwilling to accept that more realities exist in the world than what their limited experiences offer them as a reference. In other words, these types of people thinking they are smarter than those who believe in signs are actually dumber and they are “fools”. Faith is real whether it is backed up by a sign or not!
4. The Jews, and all cultures around Jesus in his time, were given many miraculous signs of healings, demon liberations, and even the one of the raising of the dead (Lazarus). But the sign that Jesus came out of the grave is the one that is most important to notice! If a person will not accept this amazing feat by the Son of God, then they by their unbelief cannot be saved into eternity. If you doubt that Jesus holds the keys to life hereafter, then God honors your choice; the hereafter and resurrection will simply not be there for you after you die. You chose it, but..