Sunday, January 01, 2006

In Definition of: culture

Culturethe mold and form that shapes our understanding and outlook. 1. A collide-a-scope of actions, ideas, and thoughts direct from the inner wirings of the strange, the odd, the peculiar, the nut-job, the internerd, and the rest of the walking-breathing Adam species mixed with their polar opposite…math teachers; 2. Local structures of living influenced by local and global history; 3. Global structures of living influenced by many local and global histories; 4. An interesting and frightening colored sludge found in your typical goggle-tanned-fresh-out-of-high-school and slightly malnourished snowboard bum’s refrigerator; 5. What began as perfect in a garden, became a twisted and assorted mess of rubbish in desperate need of fixing, and ends as perfect in a city.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is culture a matter of the heart?
Or is it actually a social thing?
OR are they intertwined?

There are arguements to support both.

What's the general opinion?
-Steve

Dan Richardson said...

Could it possibly be that culture being a matter of heart is affected by society?

*cough* cheers for lunch *cough*

Xthebuilder said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jeremy Postal said...

Steve, I suppose before I could give any thought to and respond to what you are saying I would need to know what the arguments for each is.

Anonymous said...

Well, I don't want to spoil your answer.

And to be honest, I can't really explain them.. I just tried writing it out and they sound like the same thing, hhaa. But, I know they differ because of the conversations I've heard...

jeffro said...

culture.

very interesting.. i really have been pondering the idea of how to change a culture. often christian's want to be a culture all of their own - however.. we often fail to realize that much like jer's def. #1 of culture --> we are PART of culture.. therefore to contructively change culture we must change ourselves...

i know this isnt like some epiphany BUT.... for me anyways its required a shift in thinking.

Jeremy Postal said...

Steve - spoil my answer??!! lol Hmmm.....I'm not going to suppose that I have the answer > and neither should you!! Let's get this convo going!

Jeff - that is a really good point in that we must effectively be apart of the change if change is going to happen. It is interesting though, that if we do not change, the culture around us still will. So what does that mean? I think it means that we MUST change not only so that we can be apart of shaping and molding where culture goes...but also so that we don't become that disgusting leftover sludge that nobody wants to be apart of.

Isolation from culture is too strong a position to take...such as the Pharisee's or Essenes of 1st century Palestine. Jesus rebukes it.

Complete amalgamation with culture is also too strong a position to take...such as the Zealots or Sadducces of 1st century Palestine. Jesus rebukes it.

Xthebuilder said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Xthebuilder said...

I have to ask, as I have pondered this all day..........is it that you wish to have a "church" that people look at and say, yea, thats it, they got it, thats where I want to go! they know something, have something, look at them!
i know you have said that we should not be seperate or seperate ourselves from the world, so my question is thus: if we are not to seperate ourselves from teh world/the current culture, are we then the world?

Jeremy Postal said...

In response to what you think my idea of church might be:

No.

And I should give some warning here; I think as Christian leaders we must be very careful as to how we "present" Jesus. I don't think it would be wise or beneficial, in large, to assume that we can dismantel and deconstruct people's idea of life and show that it isn't congruent so that then we can blindside them with the "Jesus-fits-whatever-hole-you've-got-gospel". It's unfair.

And yes.

I would love to be, and enjoy being, apart of a church that is attractive to outside of church people.

As to your comment on seperation:

I'm just saying what I see. Amalgamation and isolation are both not good options...at least according to Jesus. So, I would respectfully submit that Jesus lived somewhere in the middle of these two options. The religious elite often critizised Jesus for being far too "worldly". Demons, common people, non-Jews, and naked or dead people often recognized Jesus as someone with incredible spiritual authority. Hmmmm.....we must think of these things.

What did Paul say about freedom? We are free! I'll use an example that is on tap with many people; the consumption of a fine micro-brewed ale.

Are we free to drink? Yes, certainly. Are we free not to drink? Yes, certainly. There are times when you, for the cause and name of Christ, must choose one option or the other. Why? Because you are representing Jesus.

A further note > which I will only state b/c I need to go to bed....but feel free to follow it up. It is not us who do the seperating; it is Jesus.

Steve said...

Is it safe to assume that Jesus hated religion- I know in James it talks about 'good religion' or something along those lines (in reference to deeds and faith)... and I actually kind of get flustered when people say I'm religious. I have a relationship with Jesus, and for the sake of not arguing, I just kind of 'accept' the title of religious- all the while rejecting it- hoping to see if what I feel is right.

I've heard it said mainy times- Christianity is relationship- not religion.
Religion is based on works.
Relationship on faith.
We are called to both- there inlying my confusion.

Now, that being said- when It comes to separation from the world, I think there's the whole aspect of us remember we're human. We're human- we're on earth.
We're called to be 'perfect'- or so Paul says.
From my understanding, we need to strive to be above the world and it's 'wrongs' (if you wish to call it that) but remember at the same time, and be humbled by the fact that God has left us on earth, and not pulled us into Heaven the moment we accepted Christ. Now, that being said, I don't want to convey that I think Christians are at all high and mighty- least of all myself, as Jer can attest, I screw up... a lot.
So, the separation is in not thinking of yourself as high and mighty, but not becoming entangled in things that would be, rather, displeasing in God's sight.
To sum it up-live as Christ did. Hang out with the 'screw ups' of society- but not become engrossed in thier ways. And remind the self-righteous of What Christ was like.

I hope this made sense.
-Steve

Xthebuilder said...

A culture of entitlement! This is how the Gomrey (sp)report identified our current culture in Canada. Thus, the "officials" felt they were due what they took, or mis-appropriated from our tax money.
It is a sad statement, but we do live in that culture, the North AMerican attitude is that of I am owed, or self worship of some form.
Look I agree that we need to be part of the culture, I do not think music effects our relationship with God, I think we can dress how we want, as long as it is modest, and I believe taht the church, the body, has a purpose, and that purpose is to preach the gospel, and the gospel is Jesus Christ. We must call sin sin, and at times it will make us unpopular, as it did Christ, and I think in a perfect world people will draw to us because of who we have in us, not what we are on the outside.
My bottom line is culture, and todays culture is summed up pretty nicely in that report, "a culture of entitlement"

Steve said...

The music you listen to, and other various things, do have an effect on you though. Whether you like it or not, music does effect you. I know some people have an ability to sheild what the music says- but, I know most people don't. Mainly because I have seen it, and heard about it from peopl who have experienced it. So, it can effect your relationship with God. Music is so influential because people let thier gaurds down when listening to it-because think it's JUST music, when really, it is an amazing tool that has been used for so many things of evil, and good. Whether it be used for propoganda or God's praise. Talk about the devil or the sweater you own...

Xthebuilder said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jeremy Postal said...

XtheBuilder said,
"Jeremy said earlier we should not be to Holy, or too Wordly, (paraphrase I know) yet here is the deal for me-what is too Holy?"

This is certainly more then a paraphrase >> it is a blatant misquote!! I never ever mentioned that we should not be holy. Just wanted to set the record straight....

The question that is raised from the last few posts seems to be: Are there degree's of holiness?

Xthebuilder said...

you are right, my apologies, i mis-read what you said. thanks for the correction

Xthebuilder said...

and yes, i think the question raised is there degree's of holiness. but wouldn't that fall into more of a work in progress situation? as i wrote earlier, what is right for some is not for others, and vice versa..........if it is not issues that are direct salvation issues, do we have a right to say what is or is not allowed?

R

PS again sorry for the misquote, i was reading several items at once and a paper i was going over had that quote

Steve said...

If holiness is based on us, "what is right for some is not for others", says that holiness is not an absolute, meaning Jesus couldn't have been the son of God. Jesus was Holy. Jesus, because he IS God, is the standard of Holiness.
God said, "Be Holy because I am Holy." Meaning there is only ONE. BE HOLY. Not, "Don't CHOOSE how holy you wish to be- BE IT!"

That all being said, we're human, we're going to screw up. God wants a willing heart, so us being holy, will, in essence, be, let's say for previous words sake,'degree's' of holiness. We will all never be at the same 'degree' of holiness as someone else. But, there is only ONE standard of holiness and that would be God. We're all at different points in our walks with God.

Jeremy Postal said...

There seems to be many places in Scripture where holiness is talked about as a lifestyle and something to be attained.....

however....

What do we make of the many OT reference's calling Israel a "holy nation" or small obscure NT ones like Col. 3:12 that suggest we already are holy?

?

Jeremy Postal said...

Oh, I should also mention...
Deleting posts is generally considered faux pas :)

Steve said...

What does faux pas mean?

Holy means "set apart".
From my understanding though, and looking at was being said, I was thinking of holiness as 'perfection'- it seemed like that was the context.
So yes, holiness is a lifestyle.
And I do understand how it is something to be attained, but cannot put it into words...

Jeremy Postal said...

In Definition of Faux Pas: a socially embarrassing action or mistake.

Ok.....maybe faux pas is too strong!

Xthebuilder said...

nah faux pas works, i am new to this stuff and learning
thanks brother

Xthebuilder said...

Steve,
That is the definition of Xian, at least as best as I have been able to discover. Ones set apart by God.
Xians are ones who have been seperated by God from thier life of sin and rebellion to one of service and devotion to him.
"we are also called saints or hagois (greek) , which is an adjective which means holy. when it describes a person and no noun is used, it means holy one or saint. it derives from the verb hagiazo, whose basic meaning is to seperate."

Steve said...

So then are the two not supposed to be intimately intwined?

Xthebuilder said...

yes they should be intertwined, yet are we all the same age, same build, are we all working the sam ejobs, do we all like the same music?
see i think as we get to know God more, as we spend time with Him, we start to get what He wants, which is for us to love Him freely no matter what, and as we start to do this we start to still be part of the world, yet seperate in thought and ideas. as we grow, we mature, we become what God wants us to become. As we become closer and closer to what God wants us to be, we will become perfect, maybe not in this lifetime, but we have eternity to work on that. Paul is an incredible example of this, of how he started this process, and the steps it took and continued to take until teh day he was martyred.......