Item description for Why You Can't Stay Silent: A Biblical Mandate to Shape Our Culture (Focus on the Family) by Tom Minnery...
Overview Should Christians withdraw from the political arena and put their efforts solely into building up the church? Some leading evangelicals have suggested as much. Tom Minnery opposes an alternative view. In this book, the author challenges Christians to engage themselves in the culture and use their God-given gifts to be positive influences in an increasingly post-Christian world.
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Studio: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.42" Width: 6.28" Height: 0.88" Weight: 1.13 lbs.
Release Date Jan 31, 2002
Publisher Tyndale House Publishers
ISBN 1561799254 ISBN13 9781561799251
Reviews - What do customers think about Why You Can't Stay Silent: A Biblical Mandate to Shape Our Culture (Focus on the Family)?
Good foundation, not the best arguments to support Jun 26, 2007
The author Tom Minnery serves as the Vice President of Public Policy for Focus on the Family and the intent of this book is really to respond to a book from Cal Thomas that chastised Christians for putting too much of an emphasis on political action as a redeeming force for mankind. Minnery challenges Thomas' assertions by putting forth the argument that Christians have always been a redeeming force within culture - a change agent for the good of mankind - not in an attempt to bring people to salvation, but more of an agent of God's common grace on all men. Minnery begins by stating that there are just some things so wrong or so outrageous that as followers of Christ we just can't sit and do nothing - silence would be tacit endorsement!
The book continues with historical examples of Christians who have engaged their culture for the cause of Christ throughout history. Of course, some Christians believe that controversy should be avoided at all costs and Minnery directly confronts that position and explains that a biblically-informed worldview understands that controversy with the world system should actually be expected by followers of Christ.
Minnery stresses that as followers of Christ the way we engage the culture is of primary importance - we must not be ugly to people even when we disagree on issues. He then counters one of the greatest hurdles to so many who want to get involved, but don't know how - the feeling of inadequacy or the question of what can one person really do to make a difference? Minnery gives numerous examples where one person did make a difference...or could have if they had been available for the Lord's service!
The book was good, but not outstanding. The argument that Minnery uses is more of the populist approach to activism (if we all do something, we can make a difference) as opposed to the fundamental biblical approach (God has called us to engagement regardless of the results). However, for those questioning if Christians actually should be involved in cultural affairs, the book does give some compelling arguments and examples from history where followers of Christ made a significant difference for the betterment of all mankind!
Why You Can't Stay Silent Jul 13, 2006
Tom Minnery's intension in writing this book are clear: To convince Christians to stand up against the evils in society. This is undoubtedly a good and noble thing to do. We ought to encourage those in government to make good and wise decisions which promote justice and equality, and not neglect the care of our fellow man's physical needs while endevoring to meet the needs of his soul. But laws, though they may change people's actions, are powerless to change people's desires. Lets say we DO manage to get all the right laws. If in our effort to do so we have left off preaching the gospel and bringing our neighbors to repentance, we may find ourselves the keepers of a sanitary pig-stye (where men still want to be dirty but cannot be because of the restictions imposed on them). If mothers cannot get an abortion, praise God their unborn children are saved . . . but we want the mothers saved, too. And that is something only God's Word can accomplish.
faulty logic is built into the title Sep 14, 2005
The phrase which makes up the title, why you can't stay silent, has a flaw, IMHO. I have 0 problem with the exhortation by TM for us to speak out. I call your attention to what seems IMHO to be a fault in logic. The title phrase 'why you can't stay silent' appears to include an error in thinking. Let's say that it is true that one cannot stay silent. Fine. OK. I'm not silent. I'm speaking out. I claim that I cannot remain silent. True or not (that I must-not, ought-not, should-not stay silent), fact remains that I am not silent. The silence does not exist. It's not going on. What IS going on is the speaking out. You ask me (why) to give you a reason FOR SOMETHING THAT DOESN'T EXIST (my silence). There isn't any silence going on, and you're telling me to explain the WHY of the fact that it doesn't exist. ?How come there isn't any silence? Yes, I can say WHY speaking out makes sound/waves, since the sound exists, and since sound has a source (my mouth or typewriter). As to having to give the 'reason' (why) for something that doesn't EXIST (silence), I do not have a way to 'explain'/answer your why with a justification of the existence of something (silence) that does not exist. The word why presupposes that something exists (the silence, or the ability to remain silent), and that another ought to 'explain': why can't you (whatever), or why isn't there (silence/whatever). How can something that doesn't exist have a reason for it's NON- existence? Fine and dandy that you should tell me to shut up or that I ought to speak out, but for you to expect me to 'explain' (the cause behind something that never happened) is to ask me a real word 'why' in a phrase that has an equally real word 'not'. Why not? I could be there like Ralph Kramden all day. I cannot. Why not? Red flag. Instead of trying to answer/justify something that doesn't-exist/never-happened, the comment (not a reply to a faulty question) could either be an explanation of why there IS a speaking out or why one SHOULD remain-silent/continue-to-speak
I think that a more logical or suitable title for a revised book would be something like 'Why One Should/Must Speak Out', or else 'Why Remain Idle When There Is Work to be Done'. The WHY invites an explanation of something or some activity/condition that IS, not non-existent. Q.: Why didn't you? A.: What? Better that the challenge be YOU OUGHT TO or YOU SHOULD be able to (an opinion).
Satan tries to screw up logic by using the word IF about things that DON'T EXIST. When you then try to answer a question having IF as a presupposition, you talk about something nonexistent. It doesn't exist. Never did. Ain't gonna. And yet IF makes it real. Re-read Genesis 3, Matthew 4, Luke 4. IF 3x. Unreal like Why Not
Biblical, Balanced Approach to Witnessing Aug 20, 2004
This book broadens the Christian's view of witnessing, restoring it to a biblical perspective. For many years, believers have been misled to separate their influence upon souls from their influence upon society. The former has been encouraged, while the latter has been seen as undesirable. Minnery restores the biblical and historical balance by admonishing the church today to be both salt and light in a fallen world.
The author emphasizes that for too long the church has remained silent regarding the moral decay surrounding it. While political involvement and social action are not the only means to make a difference, they are important means that believers have neglected in the last several decades.
This book is a must-read for all Christians who desire to have a balanced, biblical approach to the society around them.
Worldly issues not witnessing Jan 19, 2004
The reason I bought this book was to inspire me to witness to other people. But this book does not do that at all- only because that is not its intentions. What this book is intended to do is convince people to speak up against government injustices and apocryphal issues (Ex. abortion). And that it does well. The author actually does convince you of reasons not to "stay silent". I believe these issues are very important in the community of Christians and I recommend this book if you want to stand up for what you believe in and take matters in your own hands. It even gives specifically examples of people who made a small protest against unapproved actions by the state/nation, not trying to make a controversy over it but ends ups gathering protesters around the nation to put an end to- what was in this case a very detestable magazine providing material of unhealthy sex talk for young girls. So it can not only show you why you should, but it also can help you lead protests (even over smaller issues) in your community/nation, when issues with bad values show up.