Living Under the Reign of God: Gospel, Church & Culture in a Postmodern Context Baptist Bible Seminary December 2004
Current Major Theological Issues • The Openness of God • New Covenant Theology • The New Perspective of N. T. Wright Concerning Paul and Justification • The Redemptive Movement Hermeneutic • Post Foundational Theology • The Emerging Church
The Enlightenment: 17th to the Middle of the 20th Century • Immanence takes precedence over transcendence... • Light of reason dethroned the church as the source of authority… • Revolution in philosophy - Bacon, Descartes, Kant… • Revolution in science - Aristotle overturned, Copernicus, Galileo, Newton...
Modernity/Enlightenment 1. Era of conquest and control 2. Age of the machine 3. Age of reason/analysis 4. Age of secular science – process and progress • Aspired for absolute of objectivity
Modernity/Enlightenment 6.Age of critical evaluation 7. Modern nation-state organization • Age of individualism/autonomy • Age of Protestantism institutional religion 10. Age of capitalism/consumerism
The Gospel and ModernityReflection/Discussion • Identify the different ways that we have accommodated the Gospel to Modernity! • What forms were adopted in order to present theology & Gospel to Modernity? • What have we accomplished by means of this adaptation? • “The Church is In an Enlightenment Captivity and Needs a New Reformation!”
Postmodernity Early Nineteen Sixties to the Present 1. Universe Not Self-Contained * 2. No Basis for Morality and Values 3. Progress Not Inevitable * 4. No Basis for Truth * 5. Language of Public Debate Lost * 6. Meaning of Written Texts Lost 7. Limited Autonomy/Process
Multiculturalism - Pluralism 1. Diversity - Tower of Babel to the final rebellion under the lawless man... 2. Tolerance - aspect of common grace that renders community/society possible… 3. Postmodern - rejection of standards to make truth judgments about culture, religion, values...
Crisis in America’s Worldview • The Death of Modernity – the death of the positive dynamic of the Enlightenment has been in process since the mid 1960ies • The Rise of Postmodernity – the impact of the new worldview taking over the soul of America • The Present Crisis of Terrorism & Moral Disintegration
Impact of Terrorism & Multiculturalism • September 11 – optimism lost • War in Iraq – circa 1,271 dead • San Francisco – circa 4,000 same sex marriages • Debate in Massachusetts, New York, Oregon –same sex marriage • Mayor Daily of Chicago, Mayor Bloomberg of New York • Gay Episcopal Bishop
The Issues in the Cultural Crisis • American culture has slipped both of its moorings: the Enlightenment and Christian Theism... 2. The ship of culture is listing badly – it is foundering: it is time to bail… • The right wants to save the ship by adding more weight in legislation… • The left wants to add more rights and entitlements to the liberal multicultural democratic society… • The irony is both want a culture of choice… • The issue is no longer what kind of culture? It is rather culture is collapsing…
Postmodernity • Multiculturalism - new agenda, social pragmatism... • Globalization - every culture has its story…no overarching story to bind all the cultural stories together… • Mass Media - agenda of the media elites… • University - ensconced at all levels... • Political Arena - agenda for education...
The Gospel and PostmodernityReflection/Discussion • What are the dangers in accommodating the Gospel to postmodern culture? • What new opportunities do you see for the advance of the Gospel given the collapse of the Enlightenment? • What would seem to be the most useful disciplines of theology to address the Gospel to Postmodernity?
Living Under the Reign of God: Gospel, Church & Culture in a Postmodern Context The End Session One