As I have prepared for Sunday’s sermon in Hebrews 7:11-20 and the change being a Christian brought to those Jews who believed in the risen Christ, I wanted to share some thoughts on this topic as it relates to our time. Here we go:
1. We've been trying to emulate the culture in church services for 30 years now, and now we're surprised evangelicals share the world's values? When the church caters to a godless culture to keep it within the fold, the gospel is lost, God is not honored, & the culture goes to hell.
2. So-called cultural Christianity (that is, people claiming to be a “Christian” because they go to church, are expected to, their family did, heritage, share similar values, etc.) is dying, if not almost dead. Either you are a Christian or not. No faking it anymore.
3. Our culture is changing every day, leading to an endless list of new challenges and questions for the Church. But here’s the thing: God isn’t phased by it. He’s still the same, and His plan hasn’t changed.
4. Everything in this world is changing. Society is changing. Culture is changing. Values are changing. But the word of God never changes. Truth endures.
5. As our culture collapses under the weight of godless leadership, let the church arise upon the strength of people who speak the truth. More than ever, our society needs a clarion gospel witness, filled with grace and truth.
6. Those folks from church history we look to most took strong, prophetic, & biblical stands against cultural corruption outside & inside the church. If you find yourself attacked or alienated for speaking truth to power today, trust history to treat you kindly. Both the church and the culture may revile your unwillingness to bow the knee today, but the Lord will vindicate you.
7. The most counter-cultural thing you could do every Lord’s Day Sunday is to gather with the saints to praise the risen Jesus Christ.
8. If losing cultural perks silences your witness of the truth, then you must ask if it’s Jesus you’re actually following. We can be grateful for incentives, but we must not be loyal to anyone but Jesus. The greatest need is not for political commentary or cultural relevance, but for the power of the gospel to explode in the hearts of men and women.
9. There is no promise in the Bible that the holiness of the church will guarantee the transformation of culture. “What have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? God judges those outside” (1 Corinthians 5:12–13). On balance, be more passionate for promoting the purity of the church than preventing the putrefaction of the culture (see Hebrews 12).