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Nashville, TN
USA

Speaking Louder Ministries is an evangelistic ministry founded by Jeremy Camp. Our central goal is seeing lives transformed by Jesus Christ through music, testimony, and service. 

Culture & Evangelism

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Culture & Evangelism

Daniel Williamson

            Cultural understanding is an extremely important aspect of evangelism. If we fail to comprehend the customs, dynamics, and cultural aspects of our target people group, we will fail to properly connect them with our Savior, Jesus Christ. As evangelists, we all have the responsibility to study the activity and culture of people, so we can win more people to Christ. As Paul states in 1 Cor 9:19 (NLT), “Even though I am a free man with no master, I have become a slave to all people to bring many to Christ.” This takes a greater level of patience, but when we connect with people inside the context of their culture, we can readily bring them within the context of the gospel proclamation. We are indeed called to have a certain level of cultural intelligence in evangelism, as we should learn how to operate in a capacity that brings the truth of Christ to every variety of culture we face. As David Livermore states, “Cultural intelligence is the capability to function effectively across national, ethnic, and organizational cultures.”[1] We are to simply have a spiritual, ethical, and intellectual awareness to the people we are seeking to reach with the gospel.

          Secondly, we find the evangelistic examples of Jesus display cross-cultural understanding as he interacted with the People of Israel.  Though he reached both Jew and Gentile with his truth and life, his primary focus during his earthly ministry was to the nation of Israel (ref. Matt 15:24). Thus, he intermingled with Jews (ref. John 2:1-12), observed their lawful customs (ref. Mark 1:21), attended their feasts (ref. John 2:13), and addressed cultural values (ref. Matt 15:1-20).  Even though he himself was the fulfillment of their promises from God and the very source of their livelihood, he humbled himself and dwelt among them with love, sincerity, and wisdom.  By Christ’s example to the Jews, we can learn how to represent the truth of the Gospel in every culture we walk into.  As disciples of Christ, we carry the hope of everlasting life within our mortal bodies (Col 1:27), and are asked by Jesus to bring this hope to every tribe, tongue, and nation (Matt 28-18-20). This can only be done by humbling ourselves within the cultures we find ourselves in, intermingling with the people in love, observing their customs and feasts (within biblical reason), and even addressing cultural values; all for the purpose of reaching them with the Kingdom message of Jesus Christ, the only way of hope for man.

 

[1] David Livermore, Leading With Cultural Intelligence – 2nd Edition (New York, NY: American Management Association, 2015), 4.