Understanding the Postmodern Mind and the Emerging Church


This is a very helpful article if you haven’t read it. A couple interesting quotes to whet your appetite:

Again, it must be stressed—for this is where great misunderstanding exists—soft postmodernism is not built upon the denial of truth itself (a metaphysical concern), but with our ability to know the truth (an epistemological concern).

As well, soft postmodernism has brought focus back to our method of doing theology. With its distrust in tradition, it has made the church look with suspicion upon unfounded traditions. Fundamentalism started as a good thing and then became pharisaic with convictions preached from the mountain tops that are not found in Scripture. “Don’t drink,” “don’t go to movies,” “don’t smoke,” and “don’t dance” became what being Christian was all about. Postmodernism unmasked these negative aspects of the fundamentalist church. Postmodernism is in rebellion against traditionalism, and this is not such a bad thing.

In sum, hard postmodernism should be seen as a threat. It is not possible to be a hard postmodernist and be a Christian. Soft postmodernism on the other hand presents the church with many lost virtues of grace and irenics (theology done peaceably). For this we can be thankful. But we must guard the truths of Scripture with the conviction that the evidence has presented. Our traditions may or may not be wrong, but that is for the evidence to decide. There also are non-essentials that need to be spoken about with conviction, even if we might be wrong in the end. In short, let us be balanced in our understanding of the issues on the table and let us not lose the conviction that the truths of Scripture produce.

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