In set 16 of the That the World May Know series, titled “Cultures in Conflict,” Bible teacher Ray Vander Laan leads viewers on a journey with the Apostle Paul as he preaches in Athens, Greece on Mars Hill and founds the church in Corinth.
Along the way, Ray highlights Paul’s tremendous ability to share God’s truth in a way the culture of his day could understand.
In Corinth, for example, one of the most important structures was a temple dedicated to Asclepius, the god of healing. Paul took advantage of a popular custom at the time to communicate God’s truth.
If a person attributed their healing to Asclepius, a model of the healed body part would be formed and left in the temple as a testimony to Asclepius’ healing power. Body parts by the thousands – arms, legs, eyes, ears, and feet – would accumulate.
Piles of body parts, but not one unified body.
Affix that image in your mind as you read Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 12:14-21, where, after confronting the church’s divisions, he says:
For the body does not consist of one member but of many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.”
Paul understood the culture and communicated God’s truth in a way that transformed it. Ray Vander Laan knows how to communicate the Bible in a way that will transform you. Join us for our conversation with him on “Engaging Hearts and Minds in a Broken Culture” on your local radio station, online, on iTunes, via Podcast, or on our free phone app, or watch the full program on our YouTube channel.
As you may know, Ray Vander Laan has been doing tours in Israel and other locations from the Old and New Testaments for many years with Focus on the Family. With him, we have produced the newest addition to the That the World May Know series. Set number 16 is titled, “Cultures in Conflict,” and was filmed on location in Israel and Greece.
For a gift of any amount, we’ll send you a copy. And if you help Focus on the Family today with a gift, your donation will be for doubled for twice the impact in helping others through this ministry. Our thanks to generous donors who’ve made that possible. (For more information, visit our website.)