Mission and Culture

 

 

Mission and the current cultural climate.

 

Contens

Foreword…………………………………………………………..…..3

  1.       Mission and the culture……………………………………..…3
    1.    Mission and communication…………………………….….....5
      1. Methods ……………………….………………………..….....5
      2. Recipients……………… …………….……………….….…..6
      3. Mediators………………… …….….………………….……..6
      4. The Scripture………………..…………….…………….…….7
    2.    Paul on Aeropagus…………………………………….….…...8
      1. Paul´s method………………………………………….……...8
      2. Paul´s recipients………………………………………….……8
      3. Paul as a mediators………………………………...……..……9
      4. Scripture……………….………….………………………..…..9

2.        Characteristics of our current cultural climate…………..……...9

  1. Current cultural climate in thought……………………….……10
  2. Current cultural climate in society………………………...…...11
  3. Current cultural climate in religion……………………….……12

3.        Mission in Postmodern time………………………..…….……13

3.1.     Respecting and dialogue mission……………………….……..13

3.2.     Post-logocentric  mission………………………………….…...14

3.3.     Post – racional mission………………………………….……..14

3.4.     Relationship and experience centered mission………….……..15

3.5.     Jesus-centered mission…………………………………………15

4.        Final conclusion………………………………………………..16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foreword

This essay is divided into three parts. In the first part I will try to answer the question if we can do mission without looking at the culture. We will see that culture plays an important role in mission and that one of its roles is to be a language we have to use in communication of God’ s truths. As I see the culture as a language, I will try to put together communication and culture with the mission. Then I will ask what is culturally conditioned in mission and what is not.

As I see the necessity of looking at the culture in our mission, in the second part I will ask what are some of the characteristics of the current cultural climate in thought,  society and religion. The reason why I decided just for these three areas is explained in the essay (pg.10).

In the third part I try to use relevant kind of mission which reflects the reality around us, to communicate and to expand the reign of God to the people around us.

It is necessary to mention that by  “mission” I don’t mean evangelism even if mission includes evangelism as one of its essential dimensions[1]. There are many definitions of mission but in this essay I will use mission as expansion of the reign of God[2]. It can be through Church planting, social action, evangelism, dialogue with other religions and so on.

 

1.  Mission and the culture

Probably we know the following question: “Do you think, that Christianity is the best religion on this world?” If we will answer NO – we will deny our Christian message. If we will answer YES people will say that every religion claims that is the best one.

On the background of that question is this basic idea: “Do I believe that Christianity has “absolute truth”?  Oxford Advanced Learner´s Dictionary defines absolute, like something, “which is regarded as existing independent of anything else”.[3] As a Christians we believe that Christianity exists independently of anything else. It is not us  nor our culture, but God, who is the source of our faith, who is independent.

Because we believe, that God is objective reality, we can say, that we don´t need to reflect on our mission in regard to the contemporary culture. But such a view comes from understanding that reality is somewhere “out there”. That reality is like the definition of absolute from the Oxford dictionary.

But…there is another view on reality.

“Reality we want to share is not “out there”, reality is mediated by meaning, a meaning we give it in the context of our culture or our historical period, interpreted from own particular horizon and in our own particular thought forms.

As our cultural and historical content plays a part in the construction of the reality in which we live, so our context influences our understanding of God and the expression of our faith.”[4]

In some way we should summarize this quote by saying that reality is not “something somewhere in a vacuum”.

We can still believe in the absolute real truth of the Christian message, but at the same time we have to take the context seriously in which we want to share our message.  The problem  with some  missionary efforts was in a wrong understanding of what it means “sharing Christianity independently with anything else or with any worldly reality”. The core of the Christian message is really independent of anything else, but the way we communicate it is dependent – on the culture – because our cultural context really plays a part in the construction of the reality in which we live, and also because our context influences our understanding of God and the expression of our faith.

I see a culture as a certain kind of language, mediating the reality we want to share. So reality stays, but expression of that reality is flexible.

Every reality needs to be in some way communicated. In the English or the Czech language as well communications (plural) means the roads, the railways, telephone lines between places or radio, TV[5]. The idea is, that communication doesn´t mean just to say something, it means to connect something, someone. (other connotations of that word are communion, community, comrade and so on. All these words have a common meaning – to share something together, to be connected). Because of that, we should ask a “missiological question” – “Do we start this connection in the sense of the word communication?”

The question is then, “How communication of the reality (I believe, that the goal of missiology is to communicate the reality of God, Scripture and so on) is connected with the culture?”

There are many views on culture but I will use Luzbetak´s idea, that culture is a set of norms, standards, notions and beliefs. It is a kind of map for living. These norms are basic for the contextualization of the Gospel. Culture is a set of socially shared ideas but also ideas affecting thought patterns and knowledge.[6]

If I want to start a connection with someone – and I believe it is for mission necessary - and if I want to really follow the original meaning of the word communication, than I must not find simply proper words, but also their meaning, referring again to Luzbetak – how it fits into recipient´s map for living – (and how it is possible through the culture). If  I want to communicate any reality, I can´t avoid that.

 

1.1.   Mission and communication

It is clear that mission is related with the communication of the reality about God and with  the culture. Those two areas are tightly tied.   There are three culturally conditioned and one culturally unconditioned elements of communication which are absolutely necessary for the mission.

 

1.1.1.  Methods

The first culturally conditioned element of communication is methodology – the question how. As soon as we do any human act, we have to use some kind of methods.

F. Schaeffer wrote that what we should notice is the method. It is rather like trying to find the right key to fit a particular lock. We try the first key, then the next, and the next until finally, if we are fortunate, one of them fits. Here are the phenomena. What key unlocks their meaning? What explanation is correct?[7]  Every culture has some sensitive key or string. And our goal is to find it. But the problem arises, when the key is more important than – using Schaeffer´s words - the phenomena, than the core of message.

As W. Schenk claims, in some circles evangelism has become synonymous with certain methods and techniques – evangelistic meetings, evangelistic methods, evangelistic literature. This variety has made it difficult to enter deeply and empathetically into another culture. Since culture is viewed through hostile eyes, it is treated as transitory and therefore not of primary worth, and is believed to be in opposition to the spiritual.[8]

Schenk writes about evangelism, however it could be said about mission of some evangelistic circles. We can´t do anything without methodology, but if there is too strong of a methodological emphasis, it can be – using Schenk´s words – “in opposition to the spiritual”. We have to see methods then only as a tool remaining subject not only to Scripture but the culture as well. The problem starts, when ‘know-how’ is almost on the same level as the Bible. When we see examples of the mission in the Bible, we see many ways of sharing truth, but we see just one principle – to share the truth.

 

1.1.2. Recipients

The second culturally conditioned element of communication is the recipient – to whom do we communicate. We have to respect (respect is not the same as a agreement) social, educational, religious, behavioral and many other cultural aspects of the people we are communicating to. If  communication is connection (see above), then we have to use proper “rail ways”. For example, I don´t think that the average teenager is concerned about the law of causality or about the relationship between will, faith and emotion. In his sub-culture, it is important if one of his heroes can be a Christian.

F. Schaeffer wrote that if a man goes overseas for any length of time, we would expect him to learn the language of the country to which he is going. More than this is needed, however, if he is really to communicate with the people among whom he is living. He must learn another language –that of the thought-forms of the people to whom he speaks. Only so will he have real communication with them and to them. So it is with the Christian Church. Her responsibility is not only to hold the basis, scriptural principles of the Christian faith, but to communicate these unchanging truths “into” the generation in which it is living.[9]

Schaeffer´s emphasis is on “another language” – saying by our words – on the language of the recipients.

 

1.1.3. Mediators

The third culturally conditioned element of communication is mediators – or the question of, “Who is communicating?” H. Küng shows six subdivisions or six periods in Christian´s history, which reveal a peculiar understanding of the Christian faith. In each of these periods Christians, from within their own context, wrestled with the question of what the Christian faith and, by implication, the Christian mission meant for them.[10]

Bosch´s comment is, that our views are always only an interpretation of what we consider to be divine revelation, not divine revelation itself (and these interpretations are profoundly shaped by our self-understanding)[11].

Küng and Bosch show that it is an illusion to think that we are able to share the pure Gospel without any cultural influence.  As the German theologian Karl Barth often wrote – “we are children of our time”. Six periods in Christian history does not show that Christian truth is relative. It shows that the Church – mediator and communicator of the message - had certain emphases, or using Thomas Kuhn´s terminology, certain “paradigms”. These were determined by the time and the culture the Church lived in.

Another important emphasis of that sub-chapter could be summarized by the following saying: “Who you are communicates more loudly, than what you say.” People will see God and Christianity first of all not according to the Bible, but according to the Christians. We can see it from the history.

For example the French changed the calendar  and called 1792 the “year one”, and destroyed many things of the past, even suggesting the destruction of the cathedral at Chartres. They proclaimed the goodness of reason on Nortre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.[12] It is one side of the truth. But it is important to ask why it happened. Probably one of the main reason was the “example” of the Church. The Church of that time was the symbol of corruption. The leaders of the French revolution connected the Church with Christianity…

 

1.1.4. Scripture

The main difference between Scripture – the source of communication -  from the three elements of communication we mentioned before, is cultural independence. The question of who, what and how are questions of outward forms. The question of what…we communicate is the principle. Kirk writes about necessity of inculturation, contextualization, connections[13]. All those emphases are necessary for the mission, but no one should displace the ground – the Scripture. The sad example is the theological liberalism of the nineteenth century. These theologians accepted the presuppositions of rationalism and very soon they saw that the Bible,   in the area of reason, has mistakes, but nonetheless can provide  religious experience in the area of non-reason.[14]

The mistake of the Liberals was to put the Bible into the category of human reason. For the western mindset is “truth”  often which is only what man is able to measure, to give a name to or to understand. As soon as it is no longer possible, he denies it. But God who revealed himself in the Bible remains over these categories. What enables us to understand the Scripture is first of all God´s Spirit – not reason.

It is the Spirit who enables us to know the Word of God, the Scripture and, of course, to know that it is Word of God. We need some categories remaining over the culture for understanding and receiving Scripture as an authoritative source of communication.  These are  revelation, inspiration and illumination. 

Without revelation there would be no Word of God, without inspiration there would be no Word of God, and without illumination there would be no true understanding of the Word of God.[15]

 

 

1.2.  Paul on Aeropagus

In the following chapters I´d like to give a brief example from the Bible. I think, that one of the best example of using all four elements of communication is the example of the apostle Paul and his speech on Areopagus.

 

1.2.1.  Paul´s methods

Paul´s message was communicated by the vocabulary of contemporary philosophy at the “worldly place” -   on the Areopagus in Athens.  From the context we see that followers of Epicuros and Zeno brought Paul to the Areopagus asking Paul for an explanation of his teaching. Paul accepted it.

We read that Paul did not refer to Jewish history or quote a fulfillment of prophecy. To the Athenian philosophers he proclaimed the ‘Unknown God’ - an inscription that he had seen on one of many altars in the city.[16] Also Paul quotes some verses from Athenian´s poets. Such method would be impossible for discussion with Jews (speaking on gentile place about an unknown god and quoting from pagan poets). But for Athenians it was appropriate. Using Schaeffer’s word (1.1.1.), Paul used the ‘right key’.

 

1.2.2.  Paul´s  recipients

We see that the initiators of Paul´s speech were Stoic and Epicurean philosophers. Paul is seen preaching to a group not only of Gentiles, but to some of the intellectual elite of the city. He does not seem to appeal to the Scriptures but to the evidence in nature,  of a supernatural Creator and the natural need of man to worship, the things that point to God.  Paul uses the abstract terminology and illustrations of their authors. He did step into their intellectual world. Using Schaeffers words (1.1.2.), ‘Paul spoke by another language’ – that of the thought-forms of the people to whom he spokes. Only then  could he communicate (in the exact meaning of the word communication) with them and to them.

 

 

1.2.3.   Paul as a  mediator

The mediator is a Roman citizen and a Jew, Paul, who very naturally uses the Greek culture for the Christo-centric mission. We see four thought systems here. If we will use Bosch´s words that interpretation is profoundly shaped by our self-understanding  (1.1.3.), then Paul knew who he was. From his life we can see that  he understood himself as God´s servant and at the same, time as His messenger.

 

 

1.2.4.   Scripture

It is clear that even Paul uses “another language“, for whom he believes in and for what is the source of his belief. He clearly speaks about the resurrection. He is not afraid it will be the end of the discussion for some philosophers.  The lesson we can learn is, that Paul – using Kirk´s words (1.1.4.) - does inculturation, contextualization and connections, but at the same time these three aspects are not his final goal. His goal is to share Gospel. Paul doesn´t try to put the Bible into the category of philosophical reason. If Paul would do that, he would have made his listeners happy but he would deny the core of his message.

 

2. Characteristics of our current cultural climate

As we enter the twenty-first century, it seems clear that Western culture is entering a new phase, which scholars are calling “postmodern.” What is less clear is whether the change is good or bad…[17]

Peter Druckner claims that every few hundred years in Western history there occurs a sharp transformation. Within a few short decades, society rearranges itself – its world view, its basic values, its social and political structures, its arts, its key institutions. And fifty years later there is a new world. And the people born then cannot even imagine the world in which their grandparents lived and into which their own parents were born. We are currently living through just such a transformation.[18]

From Veith’s and Druckner’s quotes we can see that our world is going through big changes. What are some of the main characteristics of the postmodern cultural climate? I present the current cultural climate in thought, society and religion. It is because I follow Luzbetak´s definition of the culture as a set of norms, standards, beliefs and kind of map for living. I believe that such set is given through thought (as a man thinketh, so is he[19]), religion (every religion has some kind of norms, standards) and society (culture tells us how a society is to behave[20]).

 

 

2.1.     Current cultural climate in thought

F. Schaeffer wrote: “People are unique in the inner life of the mind – what they are in their thought world system determines how they act. As a man thinketh, so is he.”[21]

I´d like to show three important thought system of our culture - anti-foundationalism, the deconstruction of language, limits of reason

 

Most of the great intellectual systems of the past have had some kind of foundations (belief in linear progress, absolute truths, the rational planning of ideal social orders[22]). They were called “objective”. Postmodernism  speaks against such foundations. The main stream of  Western culture rejects all meta-narratives (objective systems of thoughts). Postmodern philosophers claim, that every culture has its own system of thought, its own foundations. But at the same time, there is no system with capital S nor any foundation with a capital F.

One of the fundaments was assumption that language can explain about the world. But postmodernism theories begin with the assumption that language cannot render truths about the world in an objective way. Since language is a cultural creation, meaning is ultimately a social construction.[23] This theory attacks one of the fundamental truths of Judeo-Christian Western tradition – logocentrism.   We believed that through words we are able to explain reality. According to deconstructivists, our language is not able to reach any objective Truth or Reality.

Postmodernism also shows that not only language but human reason as well is limited. We can recognize or understand our world not only through reason but through our emotion and intuition as well. The Truth necessary doesn´t need to be improved by human reason. Postmodern thinking doesn´t see human reason as the only judge of objectivity.  Postmoderns literally “feel” their way through life.[24]

 

 

 

2.2.   Current cultural climate in society

Probably most people have never read any postmodern philosophers, but they behave according to the ideas of these philosophers. Why? Because those philosophers teach at the universities, the schools and they write books. Their students will write more books and articles for newspapers, and they will teach, they will work in multi-media and so on. So they will be in the social structures where they will meet "normal people" and where they will communicate the postmodern message. I have choose three characteristics of contemporary culture – segmentation, multi-media-culturalism and multi-culturalism

 

Our society is divided into many subcultures: fashions, ideas, opinions, life-styles. Postmodernism tries to support the right of many subcultures and ethnic groups to exist. Christianity, like any other religion, is seen only as a segment of society, rather than the integral part of society.[25] All segments has the same right to exist.

One of the herald of segmentation are multimedia. I see two main goals of multimedia. To inform and to entertain us. Probably it is one of the main reasons, why multi-media have so strong an influence. We want to be informed and to be entertained.

Our society works because of a strong informational network. Multi-media tell us not only what happened, but what is good and wrong, what kind of fashion is appropriate.

Multimedia  - like a movie, a TV show is the unrealistic world of film. But this world is seen as realistic. So the result is that a lot of the time we “live” watching the lives  of other people. We “live” watching love, adventure, decisions of other people. Because of informational network I have heard that some people call our world ‘McWorld’.[26]

One of the result of “‘McWorld’ world” is that postmodernism tries to support the right of many subcultures and ethnic groups to exist. This leads to a kind of relativism, in the sense that since all cultures have the same rights then no culture has the final truth. So under this widespread umbrella there can co-exist homosexuals, lesbiens, ethnic groups, religious groups and many others.

 

2.3. Current cultural climate in religion

Postmoderns are not opposed to faith. They see themselves as spiritual people who are not religious (specifically in many cases non-practicing Catholics). They are very mystical and are attracted to the mystical aspects of spirituality.[27] Newsweek magazine reports that people are buying more books on meditation, prayers and spirituality than on sex or self-help. Of course, not all postmodernists are spiritual seekers, but many are. This bodes well for those who wish to preach the Gospel to them.[28] However, this spiritual search is a search for something experiential, personal and practical in nature. They are looking for their own personal spirituality. Thus we see the rise of Eastern religions in Western societies. New Age thinking, for example, is becoming more and more popular. We could think of New Age as an expression of postmodern spirituality because it is experiential, personal and from the practitioners’ point of view, practical.

Postmodernists changed religion  to spirituality and are open to whatever universal spiritual truth. I´d like to show a few important areas of postmodern spirituality – spirituality without truth, without God and experience focused spirituality.

As we already seen, postmodernism rejected any universal truth reality as a social construct. Because of that, for the postmodern man it is more important to believe in something than to reveal the truth. What I believe is depending on my own choice or on the choice of the community I belong to. A belief system can´t be improved by reason. No one has the right to criticize my belief and I don´t have the right to persuade others about my belief system. Postmodernism places a high value on subjectivity. That is the reason why is there is a tendency to view truth as personal and specific. Everyone can have his or her own truth.

In the climate I described the idea of God with capital G almost impossible. As I mentioned, one of the main emphasis is on spirituality, not on God. I can be spiritual through Eastern meditation, neo-paganistic practices or through silence in the Church or even through MY God or gods. It is question of my choice. Postmodernists are not against God. But they are against any view that God is a universal source of morality or Truth.

Because of that for postmodern people it is not so important to prove God or something above. To experience means more than to rationally describe it. Probably it is one of the reasons why Eastern religions are still popular in Europe.  The Eastern guru meditates with you instead of teaching you doctrine. Or put it another words – he will guide you in your tasting of spiritual experience. The one who is meditating is more important than the subject – to whom we are meditating. The subject can be a point, tree or god or whatever.

 

 

3. Mission in Postmodern time

Francis A. Schaeffer once said if he had only one hour to share the gospel with a person, he would spend the first forty-five minutes finding out what the person believed about God and the last fifteen minutes presenting Christ from that basis. The first two parts of the essay have been “the first forty-five minutes. The third one is going to be about “ the last fifteen minutes”. It will come from some characteristics of contemporary culture that I mentioned earlier in chapter two. 

 

3.1. Respecting and dialogue mission

 

We cannot possibly witness to people if we resent their presence or the views they hold.[29] Sometimes the Church is seen as an anti-culture society. Sometimes Christians deal with the other communities or cultures arrogantly. Especially in current postmodern climate, such attitude is irritating. For us the contemporary situation means to listen and to try to understand. As Christians we use “one way direction” style of explaining the Gospel. One is preaching and the others are listening. It has worked for centuries. The problem is the style we communicate by our attitude to the other religions, communities. We think that we will speak and they will listen. But it doesn’t work this way any more. We will have to enter into open discussion. But it is much more difficult than just to have oneway monologue. One of the reasons why we are avoiding dialogue is the fear that we will loose our identity.

We really will loose our identity if we will lose the correct understanding of the difference between dialogue and claiming that all religions or opinions are leading towards one goal (It is situation we are facing today in the inter-religious dialogue).  We have to see the difference between dialogue and syncretism. But on the other hand, because of this danger of dialogue, we don’t need to avoid it or to ignore it. The non-Christian’s world will be more open to respectful dialogue that to one-way-monologue.

 

3.2.   Post-logocentric mission

Both the Old and New Testament start with an emphasis on the Word. The same emphasis is clear in most Evangelical churches. It is the well known phrase “sola scriptura”. In the middle of our worship we have the preaching – explanation of the Word of God. How should we deal with the new emphasis on the visual? I think that this will mean a new challenge for us. We should realize that man has other means of receiving input than just the ears. We still agree with sola scriptura but we should think about the context of our words.

Especially young people are sensitive to pictures, drama, movie and the other “eye channels”. Postmodern spirituality is “image based”.[30] It is understandable when we compare the influence of TV and broadcasting.

Another context for our words should be story telling. In a certain way Christianity is an abstract religion. It can be difficult to imagine “Jesus in us”, “power of Holy Spirit” and so on. Because of mass media our culture is not very abstract. So we should learn how to connect abstract principles with some concrete examples.

 

3.3. Post – rational mission

The “Magna charta” of rationalistic Christianity are the “Four Spiritual Laws” with well known diagram of the train pulling two cabooses. The train it named “facts”, one caboose is named “faith” and the second is “feeling”.  Following this illustration is the explanation  – “The train will run with or without the caboose. However, it would be useless to pull the train by the caboose. In the same way, we, as Christians do not depend on feelings or emotions, but we place our faith (trust) in the trustworthiness of God and the promises of His Word.[31]

I can agree with all of that, but I have one question. Why did the author of the “4 Spiritual Laws” not speak about another caboose – named reason? Our reason can be as misleading as emotions. For example, some liberals can’t receive Christ’s miracles – because it goes against our reason.  So they call it “the myth of the Early Church”.

We should realize that to become a Christian doesn´t necessary mean to put God into categories of some system, or to have an answer to all questions of our faith. Our message should reach more than just the intellectual part of man.   As Evangelicals we don´t need to be afraid to speak about God as Father, but at the same time as mystery. By mystery, I don´t mean something irrational. I mean to remind us that God transcends the ability of human reason.

 

 

3.4.  Relationship and experience centered mission

In modern mission, there are two basic scenarios of preaching the Gospel. The first scenario is personal, one on one evangelism. The object is to convince someone though a brief, logical presentation of the Gospel that they need to make a decision.

The second scenario of modern evangelism is public evangelism. This is usually some type of public proclamation of the Gospel to groups of people, often called Gospel meeting. There is a verbal explanation of the Gospel, a decision is called for and those who respond are "followed up" by being directed to a Bible teaching church. The postmodern model starts with "relationship". The postmodern sees spirituality lived out in the life of someone he trusts. He is invited by his friend to explore spirituality with him. He learns that spirituality is really a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.[32]

As I wrote earlier, postmodern man is looking for some spiritual experience, but unfortunately without God.

But the other side the perpetual openness to experience of postmodern is such that one can never underestimate it.[33] Experience can be a bridge. We can speak about Christian spirituality about experiencing of the living God. But such issues can be hardly explained from the pulpit. It is much better to share it – through relationships. Another need for relationship comes from the absence of it. Our world is a world of abandoned people. They are abandoned from others, and therefore so they don´t suppose that God will have any desire to take care for them. We can show that God is not “out there”, but that we can experience him not just by strong evidences but by feelings, emotions, life experiences.

 

3.5. Jesus-centered mission

In the midst of all diversity, however, there is a center: Jesus Christ.[34] Classical Christianity teaches that there is no salvation apart from the faith in the anointing work of Jesus Christ[35]. In the postmodern climate we have to be strongly Jesus-centered. We have to distinguish and expose the non-critical acceptance of the multi-religious umbrella.

As soon as we will loose the Jesus-centered focus, our mission will become human centered. The basic question will be what can God do for me? God will become just some kind of medicine.

Our goal will not be to share the Good News, but to accomplish peace, not to hurt anyone. Of course we want peace, but peace is not the goal of missiology. According to my observation, the main struggle in the future will proceed in this direction.

 

 

4. Final conclusion

When I think about Christianity in the contemporary world, then my starting point is that there in no dualism in the Bible between the realm of grace and the realm of nature, between the higher and lower world.

If our world is God´s creation, then all that He has created is good. As Christians we have a tendency to divide our world into the spiritual and non-spiritual, between “normal life and ministry”, between “Sunday and the rest of the week”. Unfortunately, we have tendency to label  “non-spiritual” those thinks which contemporary culture likes. But such a situation leads toward separation of Christians from non-Christians world and culture. Our mission becomes in that case more like science-fiction; one totally separated culture seeking to attract another culture. I think that the Bible has a different type of separation.  It is between the realm of Sin and God´s kingdom. Our culture itself is not Sin.  Most human´s deeds are not sinful – if it is done under God´s leadership. Work, sex, money, food, sport, free time, study, carrier and thousands of other areas people are living in are neutral. We can´t say if they are good or bad. Our first question must be whether they are done under God´s will or not.

Our problem is that some of these areas which are part of the culture we have apriory condemned. They are too unholy for us.

Or another extreme is that we lose control over some of these areas. But it is not the problem of…money, sex or study. It is our own failure.

Finally, another possible viewpoint is to bring God’s view into the world where people live, instead of ignoring the culture of the people we are speaking to with the Gospel. This is viewpoint I have tried to present in this essay.       

 

 

 

Bibliography:

Bosh, D.J.,  Transforming mission     (NY, Orbis   1994)

Oxford Advanced Learner´s Disctionary of Current English    (Great Britain, Oxford University Press  1989)

Bevans, S.B.,    Models of Contextual missiology     (NY, Orbis   1999)

Luzbetak, L.J.,    The Church and Cultures   (NY, Orbis   1998) 

Burson, S.R., Walls  L.J.,   S.C.Lewis & F. Schaeffer    (Illinois, IVP  1998)    

Schaeffer, F.A.,  Escape from Reason   (Illinois, Crossway books  1993)   

Schaeffer, F.A.,  How than we should live    (N.J.,   Fleming H. Revell comp.  1976)

Kirk, J.A.,   What is Mission?   (London,   Darton, Longman and Todd. Ltd. 2000)  

Sproul,R.C., Gerstern, J.,  Lindsley A.,   Classical Apologetics  (Mi.,  Zondervan pbl.  1984)  

Veith, G.E.,    Postmodern times  (Illinois,  Crosway Books   1994)   

Engen, V.Ch.,   Mission on the Way   (Mi,  Baker Book house company   1996)  

Harvey, D., The Condition of Postmodernity,  (Oxford,   Blackwell pbl. 1990)  

Sweet, L.,   Postmodern pilgrims   (Tenenessee, Broadman&Holman pbl. 2000)  

Dowell, J., Evidence that demans a verdict,   vol.1   (Nashville, Thomas Nelson PBL.  1972) 

 

Websides:

Rohde, P.R.,   www.newWway.org

http://www.mislinks.org/topics/context.htm

 



[1] Bosh, D.J.,  Transforming mission     (NY, Orbis   1994)   pg. 10.

[2] Bosh, D.J.,  Transforming mission   pg. 1.

[3] Oxford Advanced Learner´s Disctionary of Current English    (Great Britain, Oxford University Press  1989)  pg. 5.

[4] Bevans, S.B.,    Models of Contextual missiology     (NY, Orbis   1999)  pg. 2-3.

[5] Oxford Advanced Learner´s Disctionary of Current English   pg. 233.

[6]Luzbetak, L.J.,    The Church and Cultures   (NY, Orbis   1998)   pg. 157.

[7]Burson, S.R., Walls  L.J.,   S.C.Lewis & F. Schaeffer    (Illinois, IVP  1998)     pg.  141.

[8]Schenk, W.,  The relevance of a Messianic Missiology for mission today  reader 6.  pg. 26.

[9]Schaeffer, F.A.,  Escape from Reason   (Illinois, Crossway books  1993)   pg.  207.

[10]Bosh, D,J.,    Transforming mission    pg.  182.

[11]Bosh, D.J.,    Transforming mission    pg.  182.

[12]Schaeffer, F.A.,  How than we should live    (N.J.,  Fleming H. Revell comp.  1976)    pg. 124.

[13] Kirk, J.A.,   What is Mission?   (London,  Darton, Longman and Todd Ltd.)   pg. 90-91.

[14] F.A. Schaeffer,   How than we should live   pg. 49.

[15]Sproul,R.C., Gerstern, J.,  Lindsley A.,   Classical Apologetics  (Mi., Zondervan pbl.  1984)   pg. 171.

[17]Veith, G.E.,    Postmodern times  (Illinois, Crosway Books   1994)    pg. 11.

[18] Engen, V.Ch.,   Mission on the Way   (Mi, Baker Book house company   1996)   pg. 207.

[19]Schaeffer, F.A.,    How than we should live   pg. 19.

[20] Luzbetak, L.J.,   The Church and Cultures   pg. 167.

[21]Schaeffer, F.A.,  How than we should live  pg. 19.

[22]Harvey, D., The Condition of Postmodernity,  (Oxford, Blackwell pbl. 1990)   pg. 9.

[23]Veith, G.E.,  Postmodern times  pg. 51.

[24]Sweet, L.,   Postmodern pilgrims   (Tenenessee, Broadman&Holman pbl. 2000)   pg. 43.

[25]Veith, G.E.,   Postmodern times  pg. 149.

[26] I found this term in the book  of S. Huntington „The clash of civilizations“

[27]Rohde, P.R.,  www.newWway.org    Bridges for Presenting the Gospel in a Postmodern World.  

[28]Rohde, P.R.,  www.newWway.org    The Gospel and Postmodernism

 

[29]Bosh, D.J., Transforming mission   pg. 483.

[30]Sweet, L.,   Postmodern pilgrims    pg.. 94.

[31]Dowell, J., Evidence that demans a verdict,   vol.1   (Nashville, Thomas Nelson PBL.  1972)  pg.  386.

[32]Rohde, P.R.,  www.newWway.org      Practical Considerations for Postmodern Sensitive Churches

[33]Sweet, D.,   Postmodern pilgrim   pg. 31.

[34]Bosch, D.J.,  Transforming   mission   pg. 464.

 

[35]Edwards, G.E.,  Postmodern times   pg. 214.