A Much Needed Rebuke
The goal of your life must not be a scheme to gain popularity so that you can use it for God. The goal of your life must be to know God better, that you might serve Him more faithfully. – Voddie Baucham
Voddie Baucham has delivered here a message that is a tremendously needed, loving rebuke, particularly within the young and reformed, Calvinist camp – and also a rebuke to wayward leaders of new Calvinism and others who’ve adopted ‘holy’ hip-hop as a human path to gain popularity in order to expand their platform.
The sermon, entitled Adapting to the Culture….Or Not, puts the biblical smackdown on what I believe is a primary cause for sorrow when examining the current status and activity of young Calvinists in the entertainment business. Athletics, ‘holy’ hip-hop, whatever.
This is an exceedingly helpful message, and one for which I am grateful to God. May its message spread far and wide and pierce many a heart with conviction.
I’ve transcribed a portion of the video for you who may not have time to hear the entire sermon, but, if at all possible, I highly encourage you to set apart some time for a most important message from God, through Voddie Baucham.
“Many of us, when we look at the cultures idols, we don’t say “It sickens me!” We say, “How can I be one of those?” “How can I get that kind of attention?” “How can I get that kind of worship?” “How can I get that kind of juice?”
It doesn’t bother us! We will often embrace these very idols as opposed to coming to a place where we simply cannot stand it and feel as though we have to do and say something….
Some go to this place and argue that what we need to do is, when we’re in the culture, don’t be too overtly Christian because, after all, we don’t want to turn off ‘the culture’. After all, if you are an artist or a writer or a musician or whatever, you don’t want to go out and offend the culture immediately. See, you gotta sort of have a different strategy; you gotta be on the down-low with your Christianity until you get to the right place. Again, is that what Paul does?
They [the Epicurean and Stoic Philosophers] did not think Paul was cool. He is about to go on his days Oprah Winfrey show, and it is not because he hid his Christianity and talked, looked, acted and smelled like the culture. It is in spite of the fact that he refused to.
He is about to go on the biggest stage of his day, and it is not because he compromised. It is not because he won people over by becoming like them…He’s doing absolutely nothing to impress, nothing to embrace, nothing whatsoever…
Now all the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there would spend their time in nothing except telling or hearing something new. (Acts 17:21).
There’s his big break. Note that he did not get his big break because he looked like the world, acted like the world, smelled like the world tasted like the world, he got his big break in spite of the fact that he did not. …
Is it not amazing to you that people go here to Acts 17 and argue for cultural compromise? People go to Acts chapter 17 and look at Paul before the Aereopogus and basically make an argument for “look like the world, sound like the world, smell like the world, taste like the world, so that perchance you can get in there and get an opportunity with the world, then you can spring it on ’em!… That kind of thinking belittles God!
“I’m going to strive to make a name for myself so that through my name and my platform I can make much of God.” Read I Corinthians chapter 1. God uses the despised things, the things that are not to shame those things that are. He uses weak things of the world. You know what Christians should pray for? ‘Oh God, make me a weak thing!’…
The goal of your life must not be a scheme to gain popularity so that you can use it for God. The goal of your life must be to know God better, that you might serve Him more faithfully in whatever arena He opens up for you. That’s the goal of your life.”
- 5 Features of New Calvinism (5ptsalt.com)
- Rebuke and Correct Me – If I’m Wrong (5ptsalt.com)
I have not listened to the audio sermon yet, but the brief transcribed part is excellent.
Ok, now I’ve listened to it. I admit, I had a rather conventional understanding of the Acts text, and he pretty much demolished it. Most clear and helpful message I’ve heard in many moons, and caused me to do a 180. I am impressed, and I am thankful.
Exactly! I had a recent experience with a Christian art critic, who tried to sell Christians the idea that Paul really did appreciate the artwork of the idol sculpters and that should be our example as how to interact with the world, especially the modern art world. I pointed out to him that the opposite was true. Paul was actually provoked to anger and the Greek proves it.