Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Cultural transformation

The overarching reason we are in Uganda doing what we do is to make Jesus Christ well known. We are working to translate the New Testament into the Ik language so the Ik can read or listen to the primary sources on the life of Christ. We don't want to destroy Ik culture; we want it to be preserved yet beneficially transformed. Justin Martyr, one of the early Christian leaders or 'fathers', had this to say about how Jesus changed the lives of the pagan Romans:

“Those who formerly delighted in fornication now embrace chastity alone; those who formerly made use of magical arts have dedicated themselves to the good and unbegotten God; we who once valued above everything the gaining of wealth and possessions now bring what we have into a common stock, and share with everyone in need; we who hated and destroyed one another, and would not share the same hearth with people of a different tribe on account of their different customs, now since the coming of Christ, live familiarly with them, and pray for our enemies, and try to persuade those who unjustly hate us to live according to the good advice of Christ, to the end that they may share with us the same joyful hope of a reward from God the Master of all.”

And that's what we want and are working for: that the Ik will share our joyful hope in God.

4 comments:

Notinthewild said...

Based on Justin Martyr's description of the pagan culture, I would say the West shares such a need for conversion!

The Reeds said...

Awesome reminder.

rln said...

Amen!

Teatree said...

Thanks for highlighting this wise statement. We can only wish that Christians through history had overwhelmingly continued to live up to the values found in it. Regardless, such an impact on culture can still be our desire individually as believers.