The Culturally Savvy Christian (2007)

Dick Staub chose to subtitle his book, the Culturally Savvy Christian, “a manifesto for deepening faith and enriching popular culture in an age of Christianity-lite.” These are heady claims, to put it mildly. While the idea of judging a book by its cover is universally reviled, it can be healthy to judge books worth by gauging whether the content accomplishes the claims made on the cover.

What Staub does accomplish is laying out what has become the typical critique leveled at contemporary American culture by thoughtful Christians. He accuses it of being shallow, artificial and soulless. His manifesto outlining our response to this shallowness is also less than earth-shattering. He pleads with Christians to create art that is truly art — not just “Christian” art — and advocates relating to culture on a deeper level than merely rejecting or acclaiming a cultural artifact based on external and moralistic criteria like its sexual content or the amount of obscenity it contains.

This framework is appealingly packaged in this volume, and laid out with a clarity and succinctness that makes it an excellent choice for readers unacquainted with the aforementioned ideas and wishing to gain a fuller understanding of how Christians can and should interact with culture.

-Nate Campbell

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