Plugged In: Connecting Your Faith with What You Watch, Read, and Play
Daniel Strange (The Good Book Company, 2019) 191 pp.
Missionaries who want to seize the day will benefit greatly from Daniel Strange’s book on how to do cultural analysis as a Christian. The author is a college director and tutor in culture, religion, and public theology at Oak Hill College, London. In his book he shows how to identify a culture’s answers to the big questions of life. He demonstrates how to “both critique those answers and yet affirm the basic aspirations, and how to redirect people toward Christ as the true fulfillment of their quests and the true answer to their questions” (p. 8). In seven very readable chapters laced with humor and engaging examples, Strange explains what culture is and how we are to engage it as Christians. He looks at the role of culture within the Bible’s big storyline and shows that we are both culture builders and culture destroyers. Jesus is the one who rescues us from ruin and restores and renews culture. In the chapter, “Can I watch…?” Strange reminds us of the importance of holding biblical truths in tension and gives helpful filters through which to measure our cultural consumption and creation. The gospel both confronts and connects, and he shows how Paul does this in Acts 17 at Athens. Strange gives a helpful four-step model for how to engage with culture—enter, explore, expose, and evangelize. The book ends with examples of Christian cultural analysis, including ones on adult coloring books, birdwatching, and the Japanese domestic toilet. JH
Reviewer rating is 5 of 5 stars ★★★★★