Thursday, November 05, 2009

Postmodernism 2.0?

If you don' understand postmodernism please visit and read the article here. Even if you think you do understand postmodernism, please visit the article. While the read may take 10-15 minutes, I highly recommend it for a good synopsis of post-modernism from an evangelical point of view. In it, the author of the article, Albert Moehler sums up and nicely criticizes this book by a Christian minister who argues for post-modernism in a Christian context. John Franke (the author of the book that is reviewed) essentially argues that
"Christian faith 'is inherently and irreducibly pluralist.' As he explains, 'The diversity of the Christian faith is not, as some approaches to church and theology might seem to suggest, a problem that needs to be overcome. Instead, this diversity is part of the divine design and intention for the Church as the image of God and the body of Christ in the world. Christian plurality is a good thing, not something that needs to be struggled against and overturned.'".....

Seems like an interesting short, our understanding of Christianity is incredibly finite and small. Christianity in it's essence is the sum of all it's parts (thank you Maya Angelou). Or to put it as Carl Jung would have it, the human conscious (or in this case Christianity) should not be deduced through the individual, but rather should be viewed through the collective unconscious of the different Christian beliefs as a whole.

Which means if Franke were to critique Apostolics it would probably look something like this, "Thank you for your inspiring view of Christianity. While you are right to maintain your beliefs in your form of a salvation formula derived from Acts 2:38. However, you must keep the bigger view of other Christian denominations and their beliefs that they think are just as true as yours as part of the bigger redeeming process of Christ" (or maybe I just put a bunch of words in his mouth)......

Which if true is really weird, because if there is one mode of salvation, then you are obligated to deduce that the other offered forms of salvation are incorrect and salvation cannot be achieved through them. In this regards post-modernism may be the absolute enemy of the absolute declarations of salvation of apostolics and similar denominations.

I myself will raise my hand and say the postmodern academic environment definitely left it's imprint on me and much of my worldview....I especially agree with this Franke quote:

"Christians committed to the Lordship of Jesus Christ should not acquiesce to the cultural relativism that gives up on the notion of ultimate or transcendent truth. But we must also resist the temptation of espousing a notion of truth that makes an idol out of our own conceptions, assumptions, and desires as though they are not subject to critique."

However, Franke does not and cannot (in his dogmatic post-modern belief) resolve the fact that many differing Christian beliefs are in direct contradiction in each other, and both cannot be right. If beliefs are in contradiction, it is an either/or conclusion we must make.

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