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The Native Tourist
reformed/biblical observations on Christianity and culture

Friday, July 22, 2005
Cultural Algebra
I came across this engaging post on the possible interface between Reformed theology and the "emergent" church movement via Mark Horne. which in turn led me to this article by Mark Driscoll who has written an "emergent" book Radical Reformation. Driscoll is on the staff of Mars Hill church in Seattle which is very large and hip. The subtile says it all:

Reaching Out without Selling Out

Reformed folk have much to learn (or better we need to take notice and emulate) from the "emergent's" real concern for the hurting souls that are all around us - especially those in the inner city. But do we need to totally redesign our liturgy and even our theology to reach these people? Or do we need to simply REACH OUT to them, period.

Anyway, one thing in Driscoll's article I really liked was his algebraic analysis of the church:

Gospel + Culture - Church = Parachurch

Culture + Church - Gospel = Liberalism

Church + Gospel - Culture - Fundamentalism

I think we need to be careful to define culture as "cultural involvement in culture making" rather that "engagement" with the existing increasingly post-Christian culture. I also wonder if the is any real way that the gospel can be abstracted from the institutional church. But this is really good stuff.