In an essay in the recent book Preach the Word (Crossway), edited by Leland Ryken and Todd Wilson, Bruce Winter argues, “Preaching that ‘simply exegetes’ the biblical text is not sufficient to secure God’s intention of personal transformation through the Word of God. Evangelists, pastors and teachers need to be able to understand how the secular culture has already programmed, and will continue to program, the mind-set of non-Christians as well as that of Christians on individual issues.
“To use contemporary terminology, a mental software package called ‘the spirit of this age’ and another called ‘the will of God’ or ‘the knowledge of God’ cannot operate in the same mind (Rom. 12:2). Paul sees these two programs as incompatible and therefore unable to be stored in the same databank…The secular world’s programming not only hinders the entrance of the gospel for the unbeliever, but it also presents a difficulty for Christians, because conversion to Christ does not automatically deprogram the ways of thinking and acting that have been driven by ‘the spirit of this age.’ If the argument and human arrogance mounted by the secular world, which are contrary to the will of God, are not exposed for what they are and subsequently demolished, then transformation by the renewing of the Christian mind will not occur.” (Click here to learn more about the book Preach the Word.)