“Derwin Gray doesn’t get it. In this article titled “This Can Happen in America, Part 1” America has been a “postChristian” nation for at least 25 years (if not much longer), following its “postChristian” period. We have truly moved into a generation who have no memory of the memory of a Christian mindset or presuppositions about reality. And it’s not just on the Coasts and metropolitan areas. Kids who go to church in Oklahoma know the Bible verses and attend Church, but there is no evidence that their hearts of brains grasp the basic tenants of our Christian faith. Many have a codependent faith-of-their-grandfathers. Yet the ancient idioms (1949) and expressions of our faith are still predicated on our ancient evangelical and/or fundamentalist anti-intellectualism. Add to that the observable reality that most Bible-believing Christians simply do not want to think about their faith…, or much else, for that matter.
Further evidence that this departure from even the memory of genuine Christian faith has already occurred in America might be found in these challenges–
1. Why are we still relying on a theological base constructed for the rationalistic/scientific era of modernism?
2. Who will construct a new theological basis to address the issues of a postChristian era?
3. Why do we insist that the Gospel can be summed up in four logical sequential statements that have long since ceased to have much effect on peoples’ hearts? One individual challenged me by responding, “It seems to me that if you can sum up the most important thing in your life in four sentences that it can’t be that deep.” He had me.
4. The Gospel is determined by many factors– 1) The Holy Scriptures, 2) The surrounding cultural influences, 3) The relationship between people, 4) Past experiences of the receiver, 5) Presuppositional knowledge of Christian faith by the receiver, 6) The work of the Holy Spirit of God in all individuals, etc, etc, etc. The Gospel, in our era, is no longer simple. Why? Because western culture is no longer simple.
5. The marginalization of the Church by our society. Of course, the Church first withdrew from the evil world God intended us to have sway over. Brilliant!
Nonetheless, we can reengage our society with the claims of Christ if we, who truly claim to be genuine followers of Jesus, make conscious decisions to reenter our society as vessels of Light, Truth, Heart, & Compassion. Leave the Judgment to our Father. And I don’t mean the Pope.”
Sorry for the rant,
One thought on “Already there..”
Most excellent post Gary. Would you mind if I used some of this in church this Sunday. I always find your words a good kick in the mental butt. Have a great resurrection day. Would love to come and have you preach in my humble 1770 church. Dave