The Native Tourist
reformed/biblical observations on Christianity and culture

Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Its seems that I am running into the idea of our future life being lived on earth - with buildings and culture, etc. - more and more.

The idea was first powerfully introduced to me in Richard Mouw's When Kings Come Marching in and was reinforced by Anthony Hoekema's books. But this idea goes back (at least) to Kuyper and Bavinck and can be seen in many other reformed writers. The idea is prominant in my book Plowing in Hope, and is featured in other recently published books such as Nathan Bierma's Bringing Heaven Down to Earth and Michael Wittmer's Heaven is a Place on Earth.

Most recently I saw this in a book excerpt published by Christianity Today by NT Wright:

Thus the church that takes sacred space seriously (not as a retreat from the world but as a bridgehead into it) will go straight from worshiping in the sanctuary to debating in the council chamber; to discussing matters of town planning, of harmonizing and humanizing beauty in architecture, green spaces, and road traffic schemes; and to environmental work, creative and healthy farming methods, and proper use of resources. If it is true, as I have argued, that the whole world is now God's holy land, we must not rest as long as that land is spoiled and defaced. This is not an extra to the church's mission. It is central.

This is a very powerful idea. I think it is key to healthy Christian cultural activity - in addition to the restorative work that Wright discusses in his essay.