Richard Dawkins, Lady Gaga, Amazon.com and the Bible - page2

 

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Richard Dawkins, Lady Gaga, Amazon.com and the Bible: Why understanding these rival stories is important for our present time
by Trevin Wax, Managing editor of “The Gospel Project”, a gospel-centered small group curriculum for all ages.

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We see this kind of discipleship—this understanding of the present time—on display in the sons of Issachar found in 1 Chronicles 12:32. These were men who understood the times and, therefore, knew what Israel should do. What were the times they understood? From a political standpoint, the sons of Issachar knew the future was with David, the shepherd-boy-turned-warrior, who had already been anointed king of Israel, but who had yet to ascend to his throne. Because they understood the times, they sided with David, not Saul. Eschatological discipleship is seen in the way the sons of Issachar plotted their reality on the timeline of biblical history. They could use wisdom in leading others to discover the right course of action.

This kind of discipleship is also on display in the New Testament. According to the apostles, holiness is not a timeless moral code, but rather a timely moral witness grounded in the reality of Christ’s resurrection and return. In Romans 13:11–14 (HCSB), the apostle Paul writes:

Besides this, knowing the time, it is already the hour for you to wake up from sleep, for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is nearly over, and the daylight is near, so let us discard the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us walk with decency, as in the daylight: not in carousing and drunkenness; not in sexual impurity and promiscuity; not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no plans to satisfy the fleshly desires.

Paul assumes his readers know “what time it is.” He is saying, “You know where we are in the sweep of biblical history. You know that the light has dawned with the resurrection of Jesus Christ. And we are, every day, getting closer to the time when the King returns.” The application of this text is simple. We are to know “what time it is” (Rom. 13:11), urgently pursue holiness as we live “honorably” as people of the day (13:12‒13), and display the glory of Jesus Christ, whom we represent (13:14).

As we live out of the Christian story, we will come into conflict with people who live out of other stories. So here I would like to help us understand our present time in light of three rival stories—represented by Richard Dawkins (the story of Enlightenment “progress”), Lady Gaga (the story of the sexual revolution’s “emancipation”), and Amazon.com (the story of consumeristic “fulfillment”).

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