Howard Snyder in his book, The Community of the King, shares that the eternal
Church of Jesus Christ is a leavening influence on society. He says that the
Church is not to be misinterpreted as a primary means to the transforming of

He states, “This would be to trample over the uniqueness and infinite
worth to God of the Christian community. Besides, the amazing and profound fact
is that the Church most transforms society when it is itself growing and being
perfected in the love of Christ. In fact when the Church is taken merely as a
means to transform society, very little is accomplished. For in that case the
uniqueness of the Church is denied and we enter the battle on the same terms as
secular and godless forces. We assume the battle for right and justice can be
won by force, by technique, by doing. It can’t.” Snyder points to
Ephesians 6:10-20 as the weapons list of Christian warfare. Then he carefully
points out, “Truly Christian transformation of culture comes through
Christlike (and hence sacrificial love, community and being.”

This understanding does not suspend the responsibility either as a church or
individual has to do, act, and walk in manner of God. Righteousness and
holiness should lead us to become the yeast of society. We should work our way
naturally through the hurting, lost and outcast of society to make a difference
in life.

(Job and Shawchuck, A Guide to Prayer. Nashville: The Upper Room, 1983,
pp. 185-186)

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About The Author

Rev. Derl Keefer pastored in the Church of the Nazarene for over 30 years. He currently serves as the Adult Development Ministries Coordinator for the Sunday School Ministries department at the Church of the Nazarene Global Ministry Center. He received his B.A. in Religion from Southern Nazarene University and his M. Div from Nazarene Theological Seminary. His other books include Let's Get Committed, Wedding Sermons and Marriage Ceremonies, and Open Doors.

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