Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Checking our presuppositions 2 of 2

I hadn’t planned on a part 2, but then I read this in Serious Times by James Emery White:

“Henry May captures the spirit of the Enlightenment as the belief in two propositions: first, that the present age is more enlightened than the past, and, second, that we understand nature and humanity best through the use of our natural faculties. (25)… The challenge this brought to the Christian faith was profound. … It was first sympathetically argued that the beliefs of Christianity were rational and thus able to stand up under any amount of intellectual scrutiny. It was then argued that the basic ideas of Christianity, being rational, could be derived from reason itself, independent of divine revelation. Then came the final step, the idea that reason was able to stand over revelation as judge.” (26-7)

The error of the Christians in that age was that they allowed the base assumption that reason was the ultimate form of knowledge. Once they allowed that, the progression to full blown naturalism was probably inescapable. Today we are at a similar point; though we still battle modernism, the new battle with postmodernism is in its formative years.

So we have to decide now – are we going to allow the presupposition that absolutely true knowledge is impossible? Fortunately, many Christians today have already answered “no.” But they are fighting an uphill battle as postmodernism has moved from the academy to the streets. This means that the average Christian in the pew can be a bystander no longer.

You ask, “So what can I do?” The book I mentioned above is a good place to start.

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