Bren McLean

Archive for February, 2016

CREATING AND CHANGING CULTURE

by on Feb.23, 2016, under Personal

God created the heavens and the earth and everything in it. He said it was “very good”, but God’s masterpiece was mankind. Men and women are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27) and given the responsibility of ruling over all created things and caring for the world.

As a Christian, I therefore have a particular interest in culture and how we can and should interact with it.

But first, what is culture? In terms of social sciences and humanities, the Oxford Dictionary defines culture as:

The ideas, customs, and social behaviour of a particular people or society

E.B. Tylor says that culture is:

That complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society

Book

Andy Crouch has a lot to say about culture as well. He defines it simply as:

“What people make of the world”

Crouch has written a few books on the topic and I am particularly inspired by Culture Making (2008). It is an insightful view of culture and the various ways that people interact with it:

1. Condemning

2. Criticising

3. Copying

4. Consuming

All of these postures are reactive. None of them add something to culture.

5. Contributing

 

 

Crouch insists we should be ‘Contributing’ to culture. To add something that changes it in a positive way. This is our calling as Christians. To cultivate and advance the condition of God’s created world into something that will glorify Him.

Culture Making is a worthwhile read. And below is an interview with Andy Crouch, on the subject:

 

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