In the Old Testament when God was bringing the Israelites into the Promised Land, he required them NOT to believe what the culture of the Canaanites was believing.
He commanded them NOT to mingle with the nations and NOT to adopt their customs.
But they did not follow His instructions; they mingled and went along with the customs of the Canaanites who were living in the Promised Land.
The Israelites worshiped their idols, and it did not go well with the Israelites from then on.
“They did not destroy the peoples as the LORD had commanded them, but they mingled with the nations and adopted their customs. They worshiped their idols which became a snare to them.” ( Psalm 106:34-36)
What does this have to do with us in our modern culture today? How have we mingled with our culture? How have we adopted the customs of the world?
Well, the New Testament also warns us about mingling with our current culture:
Galatians 1:4 says that Jesus died to deliver us from this present evil world.
And Romans 12:2 says “ Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Let me give you just a few examples of ways we might be mingling with our current culture. I am sure that after I offer these ideas, you might be able to see how you could be going along with your culture’s customs. I trust that with the help of the Lord you will realize how you have been snared into believing what the world says and not what the Word of God says.
*How about the deceitfulness of riches? Has the search for more and more money and stuff drowned out your love for God’s Word? If so you might be adopting the world’s customs.
*How about our boast about our busyness? I have lost count how many people have boasted to me that their life is a zoo! Are we doing too much of nothing and not spending time with what matters most?
*What about enabling? Are you giving into your kids’ demands and wants and not training them to take responsibility? If so, you might be mingling with the enemy.
Is your child’s room a pig’s sty? If so, realize that describes how the world operates. If you are training your children by the Word, their room should express the Word and not the world.
Has your iPhone become your idol? Are you spending more time on your IPhone rather than seeking God’s Throne? Just sayin’.
Remember what Psalms says: “They mingled with the nations and adopted their customs. They worshiped their idols which became a snare to them.” (Psalms 106:34-36)
These previous examples are just a few examples of what I see or hear almost on a daily basis. They are cases in point of how we have mingled with our culture and adopted its customs.
John Eldredge says in his book, Get Your Life Back: Everyday Practices for a World Gone Mad:
” Sincere followers of Jesus in every age have faced very difficult decisions—usually at that point of tension where their life with and for God ran straight against the prevailing cultural norm… We have always been “strangers and aliens” in the world, insofar as our values seemed so strange and bizarre to those around us. We are now faced with a series of decisions that are going to make us look like freaks—choices like fasting from social media, never bringing our smartphones to any meal, conversation, or Bible study, cutting off our media intake so we can practice stillness every day. The good news is that we actually have a choice. Unlike persecution, the things currently assaulting us are things we can choose not to participate in.”
So, in closing, I say don’t be married to your culture. You are already married. For after all, the Lord God is your Husband. “For your Maker is your Husband, the Lord Almighty is His Name” Isaiah 54:5