Breaking the Spiral


Charles Colson's Two-Minute Warnings are classic. The message above describes a passion of his before his death, namely calling attention and giving courage to those tho are defending the truths of a Biblical worldview. There is a growing movement of silence among Christian's regarding social issues which stand in opposition to God's image and are being purported as normal.

We have a strategy to break this spiral of silence, and it goes hand-in-hand with a movement in Christian apologetics. The strategy involves detailed apologetic training, using current issues in news and culture, and cultural engagement.

One of the pieces of this strategy involves students intentionally interacting with the world around them. An upcoming trip that will challenge students this way is the Chicago Study-and-Mission experience. Students will visit museums in the Chicago area while conducting surveys asking hard questions of patrons such as:

  • Where does life come from?
  • What do you think the purpose of life is?
  • What do you believe about God?
  • Does life have an intrinsic value?
  • Is mankind inherentely good, inherently evil or determined by their circumstances?
  • What makes up a healthy society?

To each of the above questions, students ask a follow-up question such as, "how do you know that to be true", "what do you mean by what you said", "what difference does what you're saying make in your life", and "what leads you to that conclusion".

The questions are challenging. Many adults are stumped, reverting to a "sunday-school" answer approach. However, the students aren't satisfied with mere cliche. Armed with the follow-up questions, students are encouraged to use their training at Hillcrest to ask questions which act as a pry-bar to open the minds of their interviewees and reveal the operating worldview.

At the end of each survey is a section where students ask the adults if the students can share their perspective. The students then use their Hillcrest education to explain what a Bible-based, God oriented world looks like.

Students bring the video interviews back to their fellow students where watching the videos creates a sharpening of character and intentional prayer occurs. In past sessions, students have thought of additional questions to ask, hoping to lead the conversation to a discussion of the Cross of Christ and the hope and purpose found in the Gospel.

The spiral of silence is a movement that has been noticed by Charles Colson and his contemporaries. We are excited at the movement of God within this generation to do hard things and engage in their culture for the purpose of leading Image bearers to understand the Creator.