What is Culture?

2014 Redeeming Work Conference - Denver

In this 43-minute session from the 2014 Redeeming Work Conference in Denver, Andy Crouch defines culture and explains how it is woven into the very character of who we are as image bearers. Andy Crouch is the Executive Editor of Christianity Today and the author of Playing God: Redeeming the Gift of Power and Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling. 

Andy described four postures of Christians toward culture:

  1. Condemning
  2. Critiquing
  3. Copying
  4. Consuming  

How would you describe your posture toward culture? What do you copy or consume from culture, and what do you critique or condemn?
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Andy quoted Ken Myers who defines culture as, “what humans make of the world—in both senses.” He meant that culture is both what we materially make and cognitively discern about the world. How does this definition shape your view of culture and your role in it?
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Andy said, “Image bearers are placed in the world so that all the possibilities of the world will be unfolded, flourished.” As an image bearer of God, what does this look like in your life? How do you cultivate creation and make or maintain material things that promote flourishing?
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Andy shared two truths he wants people to understand about Revelation 21 and 22: 

  1. Heaven is coming to earth.
  2. The new earth will be saturated with products of human activity.
Andy said, “God’s vision for the world is one that has been so thoroughly cared for that every part has been shaped by the activity of people who make stuff and meaning.”  

How does this impact your perspective on eternity? How does an understanding of a flourished, material earth influence your purpose for your own work today?
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You were made to cultivate and create. As mundane as it may look in your life, your work is part of the grand design for a flourished creation and a new heaven and earth.  

For more information about Redeeming Work and how you can attend the next event, click here.