CEC LAUNCH

EQUIPPING YOU TO SPEAK GOD'S TRUTH TO OTHERS

WELCOME TO CHRISTIANS ENGAGING CULTURE

EQUIPPING YOU TO SPEAK GOD'S TRUTH TO OTHERS

Welcome to Christians Engaging Culture, a program to equip St Thomas' (and other Christians) to give a faithful answer in everyday cultural conversations and turn them to the gospel.

We will aim to bring together the best resources from around the Internet so that we can discuss them as a church and grow together in our ability to respond to the questions we're asked.

This week we listen to a podcast by Martyn Iles from Australian Christian Lobby which sets the scene for why we need to equip ourselves to speak with others about our faith and the challenges we all face from a Christian perspective. You can subscribe to the podcast here. Please help other church members to subscribe too.

Make sure you explore Digging Deeper further below. You'll find a podcast by John Lennox explaining the new cultural landscape using the Book of Daniel, and an article by Martyn Iles on why truth matters.

Duration: 15:57 (podcast); 35:29 (video).Publisher: Martyn Isles (Australian Christian Lobby), material in podcast used with permission.Accessed: 14/5/19.

CHURCH SURVEY

We have used the Church Survey conducted in August last year to determine topics we will cover and our approach to delivering this information. You can review the survey report here. In particular we have tried to develop a delivery format that will enable people to engage with the information at a time and place that suits them. We will conduct a survey at the end of the first topic, Evangelism, to ensure that our approach is the right one.

GETTING THE MOST OUT OF CEC DEPENDS ON HOW WELL YOU ENGAGE WITH IT

Christians Engaging Culture will bring you written information, videos and podcasts that have been carefully selected to equip you to think deeply about issues and develop the conversational skills and confidence to share your views with others.

We encourage you to engage with the issues by discussing the content with your Discipleship Group or a group of like-minded friends. Why not share your experiences with each other, and encourage each other by praying?

ENCOURAGEMENT FROM THE BIBLE

So justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter. Truth is nowhere to be found, and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey. Isaiah 59: 14-15

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. 1 Peter 3: 15-17

GROUP OR PERSONAL REFLECTION

      1. To what extent do you think Isaiah 59: 14 - 15 reflects our current Australian culture?
      2. Discuss to what extent Christians should speak with others from the perspective of the Christian worldview, based on scripture? If we are to speak what do you think should be our motivation? When do you think we should speak? When do you think we should remain silent? Refer to 1 Peter 3:15.

PRAYER

Heavenly Father,

We recognise you as the author of truth, justice and righteousness in our world. How it must grieve you to see how truth is twisted in our Australian society. Please help each of us to understand your truth and apply it to our lives. Help us to be ready to explain your truth to others clearly and wisely and lead them into a conversation about you and your sovereignty and your gift of salvation through Jesus.

In Jesus' name, Amen.

DIGGING DEEPER

John Lennox is Professor of Mathematics at Oxford University, internationally renowned speaker and author of several books on the interface of science, philosophy and religion.

In this podcast John Lennox compares the challenges Daniel and his friends faced in the Babylonian culture while they were in exile with the culture we as Christians now live in today in the western world. He explores concepts such as relativism in values, ethics and truth, social engineering and the desire for recognition. He challenges us as Christians to be ready to stand up for our faith, what that could mean and how we can prepare ourselves. This is an encouraging and challenging message, well worth listening to and reflecting on.


Duration: 50:19.Publisher: Living Word.Link accessed: 10/05/2019

This excellent article, What is Truth, by Martyn Iles reviews the current worldview on truth and its ramifications for society. He states that the post-modernists have reinvented truth and challenges us to reflect on how our approach as Christians has been to focus on affirming love and grace. We are now waking up to a new world order where truth has stumbled. He challenges us to think through what we should be saying.


Publisher: Martyn Iles, Australian Christian Lobby.Link accessed: 10/05/2019