Cultural Encounters: A Journal For The Theology Of Culture Volume 11 Number 1 (Winter 2015) - Page 112

BOOK REVIEWS Part 1 of Joy for the World explores the founding of America with a brief history of these events as seen through the lens of a current-day political scientist. Forster then adds an ecclesiological view of the concurrent formation of the American church. Part 2 presents one chapter each on what Forster calls “three kinds of Christians” as he explores the sociological implications of those in the church who express extremes (both good and bad) in the offices of prophet (doctrine), priest (devotion), and king (stewardship). Part 3 finds Forster “exegeting culture” in a chapter each dedicated to three key societal intersections for the Evangelical church in America: sex and family, work and the economy, and citizenship and community. Regarding cultural engagement, Forster assures the reader of his commitment to biblical orthodoxy by asserting, “If you were afraid I was going to say we should reduce the level of conflict between the church and the world in order to have more impact on society, you can put your mind to rest. I’m not offering any of that” (62). For the reader who might find such declarations off-putting, Forster just a short time later reveals his paradigm for Christianity’s interface with society thus: The foundation of all sound cultural engagement is the integration of two things. First, we must begin with affirmation of the God-given goodness of civilizational activity. Second, the special transformation of our hearts by the Spirit must flow into our civilizational activity, so that we stand against all that is sinful and wrong in the world and pursue a more excellent way. We must integrate these two commissions into a single, unified civ ƗFƖfRFBW&W76W2FRbvBFRfW&FV"bF2&2Rbv2&6RBv6FЦWVƖfVB'FRfvsf'7Bf"F6Rv֖vBVW7F0Vr&Vv&FrFR( 6W&6( 2R&W2VFFW&7FvF66WGf'7FW"FVgW6W27V6F6F֖W2bf6&RBf6&RvFF0V&ǒ7FFVVC( FR7G'V7GW&RbF2&&VfV7G2ג6f7FFBN( 0W76VFFF67W72&F&v旦FB&v26&7FGbv^( &PvrFFƲ&WB6&7FGB66WG( 36V6BWR67W'0vV26FW"FV6rB&V6rf'7FW"VG2fbFR7&FVP66W&rvB26BfW'7W2rB26B'6FǒVFr( ĐFWF&FFfR&V6rB6WFW2&6r&RGv6FW2bFR6P6( #FRǒ6W6Rf"66W&g&F2&VFW.( 2fFvRB2֖BR6WFW2f'7FW.( 2v2&6RBv6F6VVFW'"FR6FR`