Sunday, April 03, 2005


Why? Why the preponderance on blogsites lately about "being counter-cultural?" Is it those statements in the Scriptures about "not of this world," "in the world but not of it," "the world says/does ____, but I say [insert opposite]"? PLEASE don't let it be the roots of the compound word "church" in Greek -- "out" - "called" - "ones"!!! Do people really think that this VERY, very common word with widely accepted usage, is suddenly a foundational concept based on a meaning that was completely lost to the original hearers/readers?!?!?!

Do those proof-texts (a derogatory phrase, when I use it) push us to be fully "counter-cultural?" How come these same bloggers don't go fully separatist? What does it really mean, then?

Should Jesus, having finally let go of the offer to the Jews (Matt. 13ff) encouraged his disciples to STOP going to Temple since Jesus was going to start a new, "counter-cultural" movement?

I am anti-sin, pro-piety. But COUNTER-cultural? It seems like a waste of time. Unless one actually does it. Separatist communities at least are consistent and fully committed to at least this value.

Or maybe this is all just another Western and/or American joke: as long as you believe it, that's enough // if you apply it to one or two small (and try to pick something unobtrusive) areas, you are a champion of the belief.

Are there other reasons to be counter-cultural? What else can the phrase mean? Now that I've barfed my woe, I am open to new intake.


Jimmy said...

The word does seem to imply "all or nothing" which is ridiculous. I want to be counter-cultural in that we live in community with another person and my family. Then we go out to Sam's Club and run mom and pop stores out of business. Inconsistent.

But what words would be useful to say, at least to other Christians, "we ought to engage in this practice here which seems more consistent with the Christian story than the prevailing practice in our current culture?"

David M said...

Wow! Yes, Jimmy! I like the way you word it because it is not COUNTER cultural, but rather intentional. AND it's specific to a situation, not just generally "unlike the heathen."

I like this better, at least in word. Now I have find out if I like the practice . . .