(Book Review) The Christian and the Culture


Christian and the CultureReviewed by: Kendra Smalley, professional writing at Taylor University

 


Introduction

Title: The Christian and the Culture: A Study of the Challenges Faced by the Twenty-First Century Christian

Author: Bishop Eric A. Lambert Jr.

Publisher: Westbow Press

Publication Date: Nov 2015

Format: Paperback

Length: 107 Pages

OVERVIEW

When we are immersed in a culture, it can be difficult to recognize the negative ideals and practices we uphold. However, we may risk compromising our core beliefs and values if we opt to take part more fully in the world around us. This is dangerous for Christians, and we need to be aware of the pitfalls of our modern American culture and determine how it deviates from God’s calling on our lives. In this book, Lambert examines what God most desires from us, the ways Satan uses our culture to draw us away from God, and the methods we (as believers) can use to distance ourselves from the sinful and harmful practices of this culture. He also uses the brief second section of the book to consider what God desires for marriage, parenting, and relationships.

The book begins by detailing the Christian calling to be in a personal relationship with God, living in a manner reflecting His holiness. Lambert next discusses the challenges faced by Christians and the ways Satan uses culture to manipulate believers. Also, he suggests some ways we can confront these issues. Each chapter in the first section begins with a Bible passage and ends with a short devotional-style prayer and a few review questions to help the reader better understand and apply the lessons of the chapter.

Whereas the idea of this book is intriguing, the overall delivery is lacking. Occasionally, Lambert would make somewhat big and controversial claims, and after detailing those, he would try making them more palatable (thereby causing some offense but afterward attempting to soften the blow). Also, he treats the altering of behaviors and ending of sins as something simple to do; he neglects to mention the difficulty of wrestling with sins before a holy God. Many of the issues he points out and the suggestions he makes to correct them are somewhat vague, and he lacks concrete examples of what is wrong in the culture and how we can correct these issues. Furthermore, he tends to beat around the bush when describing how to end certain sins in our lives. Another issue I had was with the second section of the book, which is short and lacking in detail and focus. I felt like he was growing tired of the book by the end and simply rushed to finish.

ASSESSMENT

Rating (1 to 5)

2 out of 5 stars

Suggested Audience

The suggested audience is Bible-believing adult Christians living in the midst of a materialistic Western culture, though some portions of the book are specifically addressed to church leadership.

Christian Impact

The author make some strong points in his argument for changing negative lifestyles in order to better reflect Christ, but some of his claims seem vague. In all, this book does a better job making Christians consider their relationships with God, others, and the world more than it does to help believers figure out the godliest way to live in this culture.

Kendra Smalley is studying English literature and professional writing at Taylor University in Indiana.


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