I recently saw the movie monument men. It was about saving important cultural icons so that after the war culture could be saved or rebuilt. The theory being that when Hitler knew he had lost he wanted to destroy culture.
In the movie some show an initial distrust of the motives of these men. The men need a show of power to take back these cultural icons. However when allies start ‘liberating’ the icons and giving them back to the original owners, where possible, there is a great thankfulness for what these monument men are doing. The truly liberated people don’t need to see the force, they serve willingly.
The story of Babel is about God creating many cultures from one people. The reason God created these cultures is because of sin. The people wanted to work together against God’s plan for them to fill the world. Sin is a part of all cultures. However the flip side is that culture was a tool God used to get people to do his will. Therefore there is good in all cultures.
When we move from the kingdom of this world, to the kingdom of God, a battle is won. However we bring our culture. Some of it is good and can be celebrated. Some of it needs redeeming. We need to rebuild a redeemed culture in the ruins of sin.
People rebuilding within the kingdom of God shouldn’t need more and more demonstrations of God’s power. We know God is real. We know that the future fullness of the kingdom is good.
It makes me wonder if I am willing to serve despite living in a world that is affected by sin. Am I expecting the ruins to be magically restored? Do I need the ruins completely restored in order to continue serving?