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  • Writer's pictureMcYoung Y. Yang

The Mission of C3 Blog Site: Revamping to Fuel the Mind and Strengthen the Heart

Updated: Apr 9



Faithfully Riding the Wave of Technology

 

Technological advancements have played an enormous part in God’s providential work in bringing forth His redemptive aim. Technology is not merely a secular endeavor. It is tied to common grace through the cultural mandate in humanity’s responsibility to image forth His glory by working and keeping the creational order (cf. Gen. 2:15). With that being said, we have seen how technological developments served the early church through the advancement of the codex, i.e., moving from scrolls to book form, which helped shape the New Testament canon, especially the four Gospels.[1] Additionally, the Reformation’s effectiveness was coupled with the development of the printing press. Luther and the Reformers’ influence was inherently tied to their ability to disseminate Protestant thought to the masses. Eric Metaxas notes this phenomenon in his biography on the German Reformer, Martin Luther: The Man Who Rediscovered God and the Changed World, when he said, “The speed with which Luther’s theses spread was simply unprecedented in the history of the world. The advent of printing had changed everything, but no one understood that yet, so what happened now stunned everyone, and it certainly concerned Luther.”[2]

 

How, then, do we—the church—take advantage of our current societal developments and use them for kingdom advancement? How can we utilize these platforms to disseminate faithful, biblical content for the sake of growing the local church’s understanding, and revitalizing her affection for the Gospel of Jesus Christ? How do we assist in advancing Hmong evangelicalism and her unique context toward greater clarity for Gospel ministry?[3]

 

Through the Eyes of Christ

 

Providing faithfully charged, biblically saturated content is one of the driving forces of Covenant City Church. Consequently, let’s convey the purpose statement of our ministry which is the following: Covenant City Church Content Team exist, primarily, to provide a theological/philosophical examination of C3’s approach to local church ministry and, secondarily, to assist others with engaging the Christian life through the Gospel Lens. Therefore, the purpose of this blog article is to parse out our social media aim and to communicate the development of our local church ministry. We will break this down into three main components: (1) providing biblical categories, (2) establishing culture through shared theological language, and (3) demonstrating faithful application to biblical principles. 

 

Biblical Theological Categories. In his newly published systematic work, Stephen J. Wellum states, “apart from sound theology, we do not think rightly about God, the self, or the world.”[4] If this is true (which I believe biblically and historically it is), discipling the people of God toward faithful living cannot be divorced from theologically rich, biblically saturated worldview formation (for more click here). This is because worldview formation is dependent upon biblical categories that are steeped in theological revelation. Or simply put, if God is the Creator and Designer, it logically follows that His design become the basis and frame by which image bearers think, build, and act within the created world—especially believers (cf. Rom. 1:20). We must, then, think in accords with His self-revelation given through Scripture. This is what Craig A. Carter calls theological metaphysics. He goes on to define it as “the account of the ontological nature of reality that emerges from the theological descriptions of God and the world found in the Bible.”[5] Reality is what God deems as such. To live outside those bounds is to live foolishly, rather than in covenantal wisdom. 

 

Consequently, shepherding the covenant community, in part, is to provide mechanisms to see and live within the biblical view of reality. Implementing a social media leg to our local church ministry is part and parcel to our attempt in providing biblical categories for a sanctifying journey to renewing minds for the glory of God (cf. Rom. 12:2; Col. 3:10). For example, if we want to see God’s covenant people take on their God-given mantel in local church ministries, she must also understand her priest/king identity in and through the greater Adam, Christ Jesus Himself. Understanding and applying this priest/king theme throughout the biblical narrative and, in turn, amid God’s salvific work in Christ Jesus will be the bedrock in understanding her identity as the church—“the pillar and buttress of truth” (1 Tim. 3:15).[6] This, in turn, will train the people of God to see her identity within biblical terms and categories, rather than through the cultural mirage of shallow nominalism. 

 

As our purpose statement articulates, we want “to provide a theological/philosophical examination.” This examination, then, is a plea and appeal for our approach to local church ministry; that is, we want to train our people to understand the why and how of our church’s movements with Scriptural foundations. Or simply put, the primacy of our social media content is to support members of Covenant City Church with biblical categories to live faithfully to the glory of God. 

 

Culture through Shared Theological Language: As biblical categories are being formulated, theological language centering amid sound doctrine creates a shared culture for the purpose of moving forward in unison. This culture is manifested, in part, by shared theological language embodied through shared definition.[7] Again, shared language provides shared definition which has potential in producing rich culture for Gospel growth. For example, when the church proclaims a clear biblical Gospel, that Gospel is centered upon the substitutionary atoning work of Christ (cf. Rom. 3:24–26; 1 Cor. 15:3–11; 2 Cor. 5:14–15, 21; Gal. 3:10; Heb. 9:1–10:18). By having shared terminology and shared definition, the covenant community is better equipped to disciple one another as well as "outsiders" who God calls into the fold. Practically speaking, the congregation is armed with an ability to sniff out false “gospels” because each member understands, articulates, and functions within a shared theological greenhouse (cf. Gal. 1:6). Therefore, biblical categories provide theological language that captures shared definition in producing a greenhouse effect of a biblically-saturated, biblically-rich culture.[8]

 

It is to this end that we desire to establish a social media leg for our covenant community. That is, we want to attack discipleship from differing angles in order to provide opportunity for our members to marinate in the Word of Truth and, in turn, obtain corresponding language to make sense of their organic context (ex. family, workplace, social circles, etc.). Or said differently, the social media platform operates to flank the world's corrupting attempts by informing minds and growing hearts through doctrinal language in seeing the glory of God in the face of Christ (cf. 2 Cor. 4:4). Though the pulpit drives the church, the writing ministry of C3 provides supplemental content for members who are striving to connect the dots of the biblical narrative to their daily lives. In a biblically illiterate age, it is foundational to provide avenues to disciple the people of God.[9] Or said another way, it serves to fill in the gaps where the pulpit (due to time and capacity) is unable to fill. 

 

The social media ministry, according to the purpose statement, parses out C3’s philosophy of ministry by “[examining] C3’s approach.” This, then, is meant to articulate our aim in providing theological language to understand and grasp biblical categories for the purpose of everyday application. Again, we hope to build and help expand our people’s understanding of biblical truth which is to govern the life and vitality of the church. 

 

Biblical Application. As biblical categories are formed and theological language furnished, the drama of doctrine can be demonstrated through the life of the church. Practical implications can be teased out by covenantal wisdom which is fused through theological counsel in God’s abiding Word. Or as the Apostle Paul exhorts, “present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Rom. 12:1a-2; italics mine). That is to say, the renewing of the mind informs the sacrificial life which is performed as a spiritual act of worship to the living God of the universe. For example, as the Gospel shapes the minds and hearts of our people through shared biblical categories and theological language, marriages are transformed in seeing their existence not as an end toward selfish gain, but by imagining and reflecting the relationship between Christ and the church through the Gospel (cf. Eph. 5:31). This type of rendering of biblical categories and theological language serve to help our people see the reality of God’s creation and walk in accordance with its call (cf. Eph. 4:1). Or said differently, marriages do not terminate upon themselves, but rather become vehicles by which the Gospel is put on display for the world to see. That means, Covenant City Church member's marriage are sign post to see and savor the covenantal God Himself.

 

The social media leg of Covenant City Church, then, serves to produce content that will help our members think with a biblical lens—with the Gospel lens—through the myriad ways that face their sacred and God-ordained lives. In an age where morality, sexuality, and the family unit are placed on their heads, it is imperative that the church come alongside her members to inform them of these attacks through the Word of Life.[10] It must be evident that the Gospel not only informs our eternal destination but, likewise, illuminate our daily activities in the here and now. 

 

It is to this end that the purpose statement campaigns to say, “to assist others in engaging the Christian life through the Gospel Lens.” Our aim is not merely to convey theological prose or doctrinal propositions. Rather, we want to help our people know orthodox truth, so that they may walk in accordance with its wisdom. We hope to create biblical categories that will provide theological language in order to fuel the drama of doctrine in the life of our members and beyond. 

 

Built upon the Rock of Ages

 

The heart of our ministry endeavors is to see the Hmong sector of the universal church (our notably particular niche) grow not only in her practical expression, but in her worldview formation which is shaped by biblical truth. We long to see revival. We anticipate reformation. We desire renewal. And all of this is contingent upon the Spirit moving through His Word in shaping a people’s heart by illuminating minds to the Lordship of Christ. Therefore, we hope to play a small part in what God is doing in forming a generation for Himself. 

 

Covenant City Church is a small covenant community forged on the eastside of St. Paul, Minnesota. By human standard, we do not have much to offer. We are infants in the scheme and life of the universal church. However, the Lord has shown His faithfulness by sending men and women who have been trained, discipled, and empowered by His Spirit to serve tirelessly in seeing and savoring the Gospel of Christ with their lives through the local church. It is amid these humble beginnings that we offer our lives to the Lord and ask that He would use us in His ways “to stir up one another to love and good works” (Heb. 10:24). By thinking and articulating biblical truths, we hope to spur our generation and the next toward greater faithfulness in applying God’s Word to the life of the local church. Soli Deo Gloria


 

***footnote***


[1] See Michael J. Kruger, Canon Revisited: Establishing the Origins and Authority of the New Testament Books (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2012), 240-242. See also Michael J. Kruger, The Question of Canon: Challenging the Status Quo in the New Testament Debate (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2013), 100-103. Michael F. Bird, The Gospel of the Lord: How the Early Church Wrote the Story of Jesus (Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2014), 319-320, 322. 

 

[2] Metaxas, Martin Luther, 124. 

 

[3] See Carson, D. A. “‘This is My Father’s World’: Contextualization and Globalization” in The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996), 537-553. 


[4] Stephen J. Wellum, 𝑆𝑦𝑠𝑡𝑒𝑚𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑐 𝑇ℎ𝑒𝑜𝑙𝑜𝑔𝑦: 𝐹𝑟𝑜𝑚 𝐶𝑎𝑛𝑜𝑛 𝑡𝑜 𝐶𝑜𝑛𝑐𝑒𝑝𝑡, 𝑣𝑜𝑙. 1 (Brentwood, TN: B&H Academic, 2024), xv.

 

[5] Craig A. Carter, Interpreting Scripture with the Great Tradition: Recovering the Genius of Premodern Exegesis (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2018), 63. Italics original.

 

[6] See Leeman, Jonathan. Don’t Fire Your Church Members: The Case for Congregationalism. Nashville, TN; B&H Academic, 2016. 

 

[7] See Vanhoozer, Kevin J. Faith Seeking Understanding: Performing the Drama of Doctrine. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2014. 

 

[8] See Edgar, William. Created and Creating: A Biblical Theology of Culture. Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2017. 

 

[9] D. A. Carson, “On Heralding the Gospel in a Pluralistic Culture,” in The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1996), 491-514. 


[10] See Charles Taylor, A Secular Age (Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University, 2007), 270-295. Taylor attributes the rise of secularism to a shift from theism to deism which leads, ultimately, to the possibility of an atheistic societal existence. Trueman, similarly, comes to the same conclusion yet within the field of sexuality. Since deism is merely a system provided by a divine entity, humanity has the fortitude to change her course. There are no hard fixed laws, or rather those laws can be manipulated by technological developments. Thus, malleability is contingent upon human ingenuity rather than divine decree. This phenomenon, then, affirms Trueman’s thesis: how can a woman be trapped in man’s body? See also Carl R. Trueman, The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self: Cultural Amnesia, Expressive Individualism, and the Road to Sexual Revolution (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2020), 35-102.

 

McYoung Y. Yang (MDiv, SBTS; ThM, MBTS) is the husband to Debbie and a father to their four children. He is a Pastor of Preaching/Teaching at Covenant City Church in St. Paul, MN and the Executive Editor of Covenant City Church Content Team. Along with his ministerial duties, he is a homeschool dad. McYoung is continuing his doctoral studies at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City, MO, and his ambition is to use his training as a means to serve the local church in living life through the Gospel lens.


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