Thursday, May 20, 2010

Talk Tuesday-Culture's Wide Gate

"Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." Matthew 7:13-14

Culture plays an important part in shaping our perception of reality-it is the lens through which we view the world. It helps form our sense of morality and determines what is acceptable by society's standard. Media is the medium by which cultural norms are shaped and spread. Today there are many cultural 'norms' that are contrary to God's word. What we once knew as sin, we now applaud as courage. Those who declare God's Biblical truths are ridiculed as the 'shamefully small minded'. Yet in fact what popular culture refers to as 'liberation' is actually spiritual 'bondage'. The Prophet Isaiah warns us,

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter. Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight. Isaiah 5:20-21

Jesus cautions us to enter through the Narrow Gate, to walk on the Narrow Road and to keep our eyes focused on the Kingdom of God. This is contrary to popular culture. You may suffer ridicule and alienation but keep Jesus, the WAY, the TRUTH and the LIFE, always before you. Remember, He prayed for us:

I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one." John 17:14-15

As we journey, may we encourage you to keep your eyes on Christ, submitting your heart to Him and praying for His will to be done in your lives. Pray for your loved ones, both near and far. If you are eating food that is unhealthy, it will destroy your body. If you are watching, listening to or spending your time on things that are contrary to God's teaching, it will negatively impact you spiritually. Let us enter through the narrow gate and walk the narrow road together in Christ. Remember:

"There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it only leads to death." Proverbs 16:25

Do you feel overwhelmed by the cultural perception of today's society? How has popular culture affected your walk with the Lord? Click on the comments link below to share with us. And may God bless you abundantly!


Anonymous said...

I have been noticing alot lately, that the buddha is everywhere. It's in decor in magazines and in retail stores. There's talk about achieving nirvana...even the 'you doctors' in the toronto star recommend that you meditate - even so far as telling you how to do it.

But Christianity is shunned. Why? I was reading a catalogue, and there were at least 5 buddhas featured - without explaining why they were there...but one shot had crosses - WITH the explanation that crosses are a 'hot new decorating trend'??!!!

It really makes me sad.

I haven't given up movies yet...but it's getting harder and harder to find anything that doesn't offend...there's violence, sexuality, infidelity, and immorality in general. I watched a movie that won an oscar, and to this day cannot erase the most awful imagery from my mind.

How does our culture affect our spiritual walk? It brings to mind that we are a part of this world, but not of this world. We need to protect ourselves from the onslaught of the enemy. We need to be more vigilant of what goes IN because there are ramifications.

Natasha said...

Hi Anonymous,

I agree with you. I find myself struggling to understand why I am hearing some Christians oscillating between accepting the world's cultural moral code over the Bible's when God explicitly instructs us in His will. It makes me think that I have to be very vigilant as to what I allow myself to partake in as it can negatively impact us spiritually. Oh, and I know that that's like when you watch something that is so repulsive, yet the image remains in your mind when all you want to do is permanently erase it. It also is sobering to see the way society is changing and how God's words are coming to pass.

You raise some pretty poignant questions. Why is Christianity shunned while other eastern religions made popular?

Jesus repeatedly warns us that; "All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved" Matthew 10:22

Thank you for your post! Greatly appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the topic 'Culture's Wide Gate." It has set me thinking in so many, many ways. I really needed to read that. It is time for introspection.
GThanks again