Much of my writing on my blog, The Worldview of Jesus, has been centered around maintaining of a Christian worldview in a secular culture. That’s why I felt privileged to write a book review for A Practical Guide to Culture: Helping the Next Generation Navigate Today’s World authored by reliable Christian thinkers Brett Kunkle and John Stonestreet. My review is intended to give my readers a grasp of why this book speaks clearly on the relationship between worldview and culture and how all Christians need to have an understanding of both in order to be effective ambassadors for Christ.
While there are sections in the book that specifically deal with the difficult topics of our culture (part three and four), I felt that the most impactful parts of the book (part one and two) defined the concept of a worldview and succinctly described the adverse nature of secular culture. As obvious as it is to many Christian apologists, many lay-Christians may not bother to ask, ‘what is a worldview?’ The authors definition of a worldview and the subsequent examples they use to help facilitate a comprehensive understanding of it, provide the reader with a renewed outlook of how they view the world (i.e. worldview.) For a lay-Christian who is disconnected from the thinking matters of Christianity, the insights laid out about worldview and culture contained within this book will help them see these topics in an entirely new way. That’s why this book needs to be read by them!
The authors made obvious efforts to write at a lay-level, which will hopefully speak to many and prayerfully influence many more. This book has the potential to develop a resistance against the dumbing-down of the God’s church. While the modern Christian church does have the occasional pocket of devoted Christian thinkers, the church is sadly failing in this task; which is why Christianity is losing the culture. Part one and two beautifully articulate the importance of affirming and spreading our Christian worldview in a secular culture while intuitively introducing the idea of a worldview to the uninitiated and describing elements of secularisms effect on the culture that are the most adverse to Christianity.
Part three and four of this book deal specifically with modern cultural challenges that have warped our Christian understanding of reality and therefore negatively altered our worldview. Some examples of these topics are pornography, sexual orientation, gender identity, and entertainment to name some big ones. The authors conclude with wise words on how to read your bible, why it’s true, and the importance of taking your biblical based worldview led by the gospel to the culture.
While I’ve read similar content of part three and four in this book in other books throughout the years of study, I felt the authors set a brilliant foundation within part one and two in explaining culture and Christian worldview. The message is focused on how we must always ensure that our Christian worldview is guiding how we view our culture and not how our culture guides us to view our Christian worldview. I found myself seeing many of my own thoughts I have towards our Western secular culture and how Christianity has attempted to tackle it.
I’ve read hundreds of Christian apologetics books over the years. That’s why I was familiar with the content of part three and four, but I can say with confidence that the material presented within these parts are communicated in a fashion that is of the highest caliber. Over the years and the many books I’ve read, I’ve never encountered such a persuasively communicated Christian manifesto on modern culture. This book should be in the hands of anyone who calls themselves a Christian, so they can benefit from it and gift it to someone else for them to benefit as well.
I wholeheartedly recommend this book and the message it communicates. As with any review of an excellent book, I cannot provide it justice in a mere review. However, I assure you, this book would have saved me a ton of time and effort if I had read something like this when I was 19.