You will see that crossing cultures is nothing new. Characters in the Bible were frequently confronted by value systems that were in direct conflict with their own. One of the most apparent issues for those who manage globally is learning to respond to differences in cultural values. This refers to philosophies and practices that derive from a long standing practice in a society, as well as thought and behavior that is acceptable or unacceptable because of societal consensus. Such values can be externalized (intellectually accepted because they are normative) or internalized (fully embraced intellectually and emotionally as my own).
Read the following passages in your Bible:
Matthew 5:21–22, 27–28, 31–32, 33–37, 38–42, and 43–48
Matthew 6:20–21 and 31–33
2 Corinthians 6:14–18
After reading, think about how you would answer the following questions:
In the Matthew passages, you see just a few ways that Christ says the values of believers will be internalized as compared to the external norms established by societies. What are some of these differences?
In 2 Corinthian 6:14–18, Paul tells those who have believed in Christ that they are different. In what ways? What is his point?
1 Corinthians 8 is a challenge for those who live in other cultures who have expectations of Christians (that may not even be correct). Why?