D.A. Carson’s latest book, Christ and Culture Revisited, will be released May 15. Tim Keller (an endorser) alluded to this book in a brief exchange awhile back. It should be very provocative and engaging. The publisher’s description:
Called to live in the world, but not to be of it, Christians must maintain a balancing act that becomes more precarious the further our culture departs from its Judeo-Christian roots. How should members of the church interact with such a culture, especially as deeply enmeshed as most of us have become?
D. A. Carson applies his masterful touch to this problem. He begins by exploring the classic typology of H. Richard Niebuhr and his five options for understanding culture. Carson proposes that these disparate options are in reality one still larger vision. Using the Bible’s own story line and the categories of biblical theology, he attempts to work out what that unifying vision is. Carson acknowledges the helpfulness of Niebuhr’s grid and other similar matrices but warns against giving them canonical force.
More than just theoretical, Christ and Culture Revisited is also designed practically to help Christians untangle current messy debates on living in the world. Carson emphasizes that the relation between Christ and culture is not limited to an either/or cultural paradigm— Christ against culture or Christ transforming culture. Instead Carson offers his own paradigm in which all the categories of biblical theology must be kept in mind simultaneously to inform the Christian worldview.
Though several other books on culture interact with Niebuhr, none of them takes anything like the biblical-theological approach adopted here. Ground-breaking and challenging, Christ and Culture Revisited is a tour de force.
I’m particularly intrigued by the thought of Carson bringing the categories of biblical theology to bear on Christian cultural engagement. I’ve heard him masterfully unpack the biblical story line several times (tracing major themes from Genesis to Revelation), so I’m really looking forward to this new work.