In January of 2006, the National Coalition for the Protection of Children & Families generously agreed to establish and launch the Center for Christ & Culture. The goal was then and remains now, to equip Christians with an intelligent and thoroughly Christian approach to matters of culture. For the Christian, culture is not to be considered a “collateral” aspect of life for the Church—culture is the context into which we are called to press the Kingdom. Furthermore, “Culture can play a powerful prophetic role in the work of Christ’s kingdom, both by exposing the folly of contemporary life [rooted in false worldviews] and by pointing the way to renewal” as T.M. Moore so aptly states. This then becomes a powerful means of demonstrating the truth and relevance of biblical revelation that culminates in the person of Christ—He is the Truth to all of reality!
The present situation is one in which the Church in America finds itself largely shut out of the “commanding heights of culture” and this has only rendered the gospel less plausible. The public and moral consensus our cultural institutions have gone from largely Christian to secular. The net effect: formidable obstacles now exist to both the reception of the gospel and the pursuit of the Kingdom. Reversing these conditions is the purpose for which the Center for Christ & Culture exists.
From humble beginnings, the influence of the Center for Christ & Culture has, by God’s grace, expanded beyond anything we could have imagined. As of today, through online subscription and syndication, our weekly commentaries reach more than 3 million readers each week. More than 13,000 people have taken the online Cultural Apologetics Course through our website since last November. I am traveling from coast to coast, speaking and teaching at churches, seminaries and universities. Additionally, I have been making regular appearances on numerous national talk-radio programs. And two weeks ago, I received word that NavPress plans to publish my forthcoming book along with curriculum, study guide, leader’s guides and an online course. In all, the Lord is using the research, writing and teaching of this ministry to reach ever-increasing numbers of people and in many cases, provoke meaningful change.
None of this would have been possible were it not for the generous investment and support of the National Coalition. Their role in birthing this ministry cannot be overstated and I will always be grateful for their love and support. Given the evidence of God’s providential hand upon this ministry, we now believe that it is time to set the Center for Christ & Culture free, so to speak -- to go forth in the Lord as an independent ministry.
As of October 1st the Center for Christ & Culture is now a completely separate ministry that moves forward with the blessing and prayers of the National Coalition. In essence, it is a ministry that has been given to our friends, subscribers, readers and supporters. Many of you have been receiving my commentaries for years, some only recently, others of you have attended various classes that I have taught over the years or you have heard me speak at specific events. I have had the pleasure of meeting some of you; some of you are new friends while others of you are old friends. The vast majority of you I have never had the opportunity to meet. However, we do share one thing in common: we desire to see Christ exalted first in His Church and then in the culture.
I, along with our board earnestly believe God’s hand is upon this ministry. It is also our belief that cultural change is both complex and long-term. Unfortunately, there are no simple solutions to the many challenges the Church is facing in our postmodern, post-Christian culture. The conditions that we currently find ourselves in, both culturally as well as within the Church itself, did not occur overnight and the causes are myriad and complex. However, the genesis of these conditions began in the world of ideas—ideas that began in the minds of a few and then spread throughout numerous small networks and institutions until before we knew it, everything had changed.
While Christianity is certainly not reducible to an “idea,” it most assuredly produces ideas about every aspect of life and reality—true ideas! Without understanding these ideas as revealed in God’s Word, Christians find themselves ill-equipped to live out the Christian life, much less confront and correct the false and pernicious ideas of our day.
That is why we believe the mission of the Center for Christ & Culture is so critically needed in our culture today. As Christians committed to orthodoxy, we must counter bad ideas with “good ideas” that empower individual choices that lead to personal transformation.
I believe those of you familiar with this ministry are among the few who truly understand the depth of need for this change. If you would like to learn more about this ministry and what you can do to help, please visit our website. And, please keep me and this ministry in your prayers as we move forward by faith.
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S. Michael Craven is the President of the Center for Christ & Culture. The Center for Christ & Culture is dedicated to reformation and renewal within the Church and works to equip Christians with an intelligent and thoroughly Christian approach to matters of culture in order to recapture and demonstrate the relevance of Christianity to all of life. For more information on the Center for Christ & Culture, additional resources and other works by S. Michael Craven visit: www.battlefortruth.org
Michael lives in the Dallas area with his wife Carol and their three children.