In his famous sermon in Athens, recorded in Acts 17, the apostle Paul engages with the culture of the city – its religion (17:23) and poetry (17:28) – as he presents the gospel. Drawing out the truth and the error in the Athenians’ worldview, he points them to the one true God and calls them to repent in the light of coming judgement, of which Jesus’ resurrection is the evidence.
At Christ Church Central, we want to learn from Paul’s example as we present the same gospel to our own city, Sheffield. Like Paul, we believe that Jesus is Lord of all creation (Colossians 1:15-17) and that the gospel therefore has something to say to all of life, including those things we might group under the heading ‘Culture’ – that is, art, literature, music, film, television and the like.
Our culture ministry has the following three aims:
Understanding the culture. We want to equip Christians to understand what our culture is saying, discern truth from error, and evaluate things from a Christian perspective. We want Christian interaction with our culture to be thoughtful – neither swallowing it wholesale nor rejecting it as worthless.
Engaging the culture. We want, like Paul, to use culture in our presentation of the gospel – to talk about the issues it raises, and to explain how the gospel both subverts and fulfils its ideas and desires. We hope this will make our preaching and teaching more relevant and accessible as we seek to be a church for people who don’t go to church.
Transforming the culture. Ultimately, we want to see the flourishing of culture that acknowledges Jesus as Lord. At the moment, this mostly means supporting and equipping church members who are already involved in producing their own art, music etc. You can find examples here.
We regularly produce articles analysing particular items from our culture. You can read a selection of articles by clicking on the links below.
TV & Film:
For more information about Christ Church Central’s culture ministry, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.