Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Myth of Postmodernism

All the rage since the 1990’s regarding cultural analysis has been the birth of postmodernism. Books have been written and sermons have been preached ad nauseam about how Christians can minister effectively in a postmodern culture. The call was to transform the church’s methodology. We were to let go of systematic, expository preaching and replace it with stories if the Church was to be effective; so says the postmodern prophets of the emergent church.

I think that William Lane Craig was right when he said that the idea of a postmodern culture is one of Satan’s most brilliant achievements. The first attempt to dethrone God’s truth took place in the Garden and Satan has attempted similar feats throughout human history.The development of the postmodern myth is yet another attempt.

The stage of history, what we recognize as modernism, is the stage that precedes postmodernism. Modernism finds its genesis in the Enlightenment which carries with it a commitment to objective truth apart from God that could be accessed by reason alone. This commitment is coupled with another commitment, namely an epistemology rooted in science. Therefore, to minister effectively in this culture one had to logically and systmatically proclaim God's truth.

Postmodernism was supposedly a decisive move away from modernism. It was thought by many that the Western world now had adopted a new paradigm that believed that “all apparent realities are only social constructs, as they are subject to change inherent to time and place.” While this might be partly true, it certainly doesn’t tell the whole truth. You see, true postmodernism is philosophically unsustainable. People still have to use things like reason and logic to arrive at conclusions. This is precisely why we must not give in to the call to acquiesce to a relativistic bent. Craig believes that if the Church endorses this “suicidal course of action, the consequences for the church in the next generation will be catastrophic. Christianity will be reduced to but another voice in a cacophony of competing voices, each sharing its own narrative and none commending itself as the objective truth about reality...” (p. 18-19). May we not succumb to the move towards relativism and humbly live out and proclaim God’s truth.

Wikipedia Postmodernism