I’m all in favor of communicating the Christian gospel as intelligibly as possible in cultures where the gospel may appear exceedingly foreign. We certainly do not want the gospel to come across that way at the cultural level. However, the rush and push to be “relevant” may possess a counter-productive force to it we’re overlooking.

Much of this is rooted in fear. We have a fear the people we’re trying to reach will think we’re strange or weirdos. So we work hard to show them we’re not wacko. We dress in similar clothes. Eat the same food. Listen to the same music and watch the same movies. But there is a danger in this pursuit of relevance.

​If we begin to reflect the culture too much, we will have nothing unique to offer it. “If church is just like the culture, why would I want to be a part of it? The culture already gives me what I’m looking for and the church doesn’t offer anything unique.” If the church is going to offer something the culture doesn’t, it needs to be distinguishable from it. The church can become so relevant it actually becomes irrelevant.

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