The Sacred/Secular Divide
You will continue the previous discussion by considering the sacred/secular divide that is often seen within society today. After watching the presentation titled The Sacred/Secular Divide (Transcript below), discuss the following questions:
• How does the tendency to push religion away from the public arena effect the Christian’s ability to engage culture?
• What are the areas within your own life that depict the sacred/secular divide?
• How can the sacred/secular divide be eliminated within your sphere of influence?
In your discussion, indicate to which of the points of the Sacred/Secular Divide you are responding throughout your post.
The Sacred/Secular Divide
I’m going to talk to you over the next few minutes about the sacred secular divide that individuals will talk about within society. Now start by saying, I think that that’s a false dichotomy. However, the argument goes that there are certain things that are sacred, There are certain things that are secular. And there’s a divide between those two. Sometimes we see this thinking it things like vocation, that a calling to be a pastor OR missionary is a sacred calling. And that calling to be a nurse or a doctor or lawyer or businessman or woman. That’s more of a secular calling. And there’s a divide between those two. I think according to Scripture, that’s a false dichotomy that we have because we know that God created all things and it God sustains all things. And we see God’s revelation both through his world and through his word. And so as Christians, we need to kind of bring our thinking together. Nancy PRC In the book Total truth talks about this apparent divide and pushes back on that understanding. But she describes it by saying it’s really looking like a two-story house. So picture two story house. And on that two-storey house, you have the top floor and you have the bottom floor. And the top floor would be more of your personal life, the bottom floor would be more of public life. The top floor would be more subjective elements. The bottom floor would be more objective elements. And what has happened a lot of times is that we will see that society around us, that there’s this driving force at times to say, you know what you are. Public life is more objective. It’s based more on facts. The, the top floor, the private life is based more on values, were based more on opinions. And as you can imagine, we have pushed as a society at times, religion, not into the facts or the scientific understanding, but to the top floor and push that into a values or someone’s subjective opinion. That creates certainly a problem as we tried to witness to others, as we tried to implement our Christian worldview or understanding. We get pushback at times as Christians to say, you know, that’s something that affects you at a private level. Don’t bring that into your secular workplace or don’t bring that into your public life. I think that we see that that’s an issue. Oftentimes as we would say, when it comes to leaders in our society, we often look to their private life to see how they will maybe govern or the different things that they will do within a society and what kind of laws they will maybe seek to put in place or the way in which they will interact with citizens. We understand, I think somewhat intuitively, that one’s private life and personal, private and personal life is very much affects their public life as well. So as you process through those concepts, when I want to challenge you with is to think in your own minds or maybe in your own sphere of influence times when you might lean towards that, thinking that there’s a divide between those two. I think it’s very common to do that and we have to recognize that thinking. The second thing to do is then after you’ve recognized that, to try to say how can I bring those together? Vocation again is how I started the illustration. I started with vocation. The cava pastors are very significant calling, but so is the call of a businessman or a business woman to use that industry. That calling that business for the glory of God. So correctly understood, we would say all of scriptures pointing to the fact that everything that we do should be done for God’s glory. Everything that exists should be existing for God’s glory. So our motivation, whether a missionary going overseas or walking across the street to talk with our neighbor. All of those things are under God’s sovereign row and under God’s eye. So as you kind of interact throughout the week, be thinking about the significance of God’s revelation to us through His creation and through his word. And be thinking of ways in which we can help bring that divide together in our minds.