Contours of Culture
On Earth As It Is in Heaven
by Ken Myers
For most of my adult life, I've been trying to understand why it is so easy for American Christians to compartmentalize their faith, keeping piety and spirituality separate from matters of culture and the practices of life in the body. I knew that Gnosticism was an early heresy—that very early, under the influence of Greek forms of dualism, the Church was infected with suspicion about the material world.
That suspicion has continued to haunt the intuitions of Christians, and has repeatedly nurtured an etherealized and sometimes wholly otherworldly faith, according to which salvation has interior and eternal consequences but need not make a significant difference in life here and now. So, when in 2002 I read an essay by theologian David Schindler about dualism in American Christianity, I underlined this sentence enthusiastically:
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Ken Myers is the host and producer of the Mars Hill Audio Journal. Formerly an arts editor with National Public Radio, he also served as editor of Eternity, the Evangelical monthly magazine, and This World, the quarterly predecessor to First Things. He also serves as music director at All Saints Anglican Church in Ivy, Virginia. He is a contributing editor for Touchstone.
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