Aiming for Calm Results, No Matter What

“The first is the error of the man who insists we should ‘just preach the Gospel,’ but who also believes intensely that the Gospel can permeate an unbelieving society without throwing that society into cultural upheaval. In order to get the desired calm result, the Gospel that is preached has to be ethereal, otherworldly, and impotent.”

The Cultural Mind, p. 148

The Central Paradigm Shift

“The point of preaching is never to make Christ acceptable. But in a man-centered era, this is automatically thought to be the task of the preacher—somehow making God acceptable to man. The problem that confronts us in the Bible is actually quite different. The real problem is one of sin, and how to make sinful man acceptable to a holy God. The solution, which made holy angels stop their mouths, was the Incarnation, Cross, and Resurrection. That is how sinners are made acceptable to God.”

The Cultural Mind, pp. 145

When the Bland Lead the Bland, They Both Fall for a Pitch

“George Whitefield once said that the churches of his time were dead because dead men preached to them. We may expand the observation. The churches are effeminate because effeminate men with wireless mics stroll around platforms chatting with the congregants. The churches are leaderless because we are nervous about prophetic preaching and settle instead for bland and balanced leadership teams. The churches have no sense of the numinous because men refuse to preach the greatness and glory of the living God.”

The Cultural Mind, p. 144

Not Whether You Want, But What

“So a humble man and a proud man are not distinguished from one another because the latter does what he wants and the former does not. Rather, they are distinguished because they want different things. No creature ever desired anything from a base outside its own desires. So a humble man delights in God, and a proud man delights in that which is not God.”

The Cultural Mind, pp. 136-137

The Ur-Blur. Let Him With Wisdom Understand.

“In order to argue anything, a man has to be able to say this, not that; here, not there; A, not A. In short he has to be able to make distinctions. So argumentation depends on this, and distinctions in their turn depend on having an ultimate ground for making distinctions. In the historic Protestant view, the ultimate and greatest distinction that must be maintained at all times is the distinction between the Creator and the creature.”

The Cultural Mind, p. 132

Which the Horses Might Decline

“We, in the grip of a very bad idea, have thought to repeal some fundamental laws of the natural order of things. Good luck to us all, says I. Let us repeal the law of gravity to cut down on that frictional wear and tear. Let us herd cats. Let us sweep water uphill. Let us feed cheesecake to our horses.”

The Cultural Mind, p. 130