See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. (Colossians 2:8)

The Self-Refuting Philosophy Of Postmodernism

I continue on here at Apprising Ministries tracking this The New Downgrade And Its Apostles Of Unbelief and the spread of the sinfully ecumenical neo-liberal cult in the Emergent Church aka the Emerging Church still on their foolish Wild Goose Chase. As I do,  you’ll come to see that its postmodern version of Progressive Christian theology, under their spiritual circus “big tent” Emergence Christianity, depends upon philosophy and not Biblical theology.

For example, in order to advance his ear-tickling Love Wins mythology passé EC icon Rob Bell had to begin years ago with deconstructing questions about Holy Scripture designed to tear down your belief system a la his friend universalist EC pastor Doug Pagitt, one third of the unholy Emergent trinity along with Dr. Tony Jones, progressive/liberal “theologian in residence” at his Solomon’s Porch, and Living Spiritual Teacher and apostate EC guru Brian McLaren,

As you can see in Heretical Shane Hipps To Speak At Willow Creek this EC virus is no longer contained and is now breaking out within larger contemporary evangelicalism as well. Dr. Gene Veith, Culture Editor of World Magazine and former Associate Professor of English at Concordia University-Wisconsin, now tells us why the faulty philosophy postmodernism is a major cause of this syncretism and a perfect fit for our fickle times.

Veith points out that “postmodernism assumed [i.e. it’s philosophy] that there is no objective truth, that moral values are relative, and that reality is socially constructed” by various “communities.” He then explains:

Whereas modernism sought to rid the world of religion, postmodernism spawns new ones. Unconstrained by objectivity, tradition, reason, or morality, these new faiths differ radically from Christianity. They draw on strains of the most ancient and primitive paganism. Even the deconstructionists speak in mystical terms…

The deconstructionists dissolve every positive statement, every rational argument, every truth claim—destroying form, they say, so as to open up what lies beyond the possibilities of representation… The inadequacies of language will be left behind,…

Postmodernism, in its rejection of objective truth, have clear affinities with Hinduism and Buddhism, which teach that the external world is only an illusion spun by the human mind.[1]

Because of this, in his excellent sermon A Beginner’s Guide to Postmodernism Phil Johnson—executive director of John MacArthur’s fine Grace to You ministry and who blogs at the popular Pyromaniacs site—would say:

I am convinced that postmodernism is inherently incompatible with biblical Christianity; and in fact, the most essential elements of postmodernism are hostile to the fundamental truth claims of Scripture. And for that reason, I would argue that a postmodern mindset involves some positively sinful ways of thinking.[2]

However, there is that nagging feeling that I just can’t seem to shake; possibly the Creator of the universe, Who was walking upon the planet He had made, might have had an inkling that the Hebrew Scriptures have a few quite unsettling things to say about trusting in ourselves and following our own hearts. For you see, that kind of spiritual suicide is absolutely inherent in the false philosophy of postmodernism.

O yes, I know that it’s not fashionable today to use “proof texts” in our postmodern culture, which sees itself as so advanced in our thinking. Indeed just *ahem* think, now many right now will readily agree that there is no such thing as an absolute truth. The reason, EC philoso-theologians like John Franke tell us, is because no one can ever really know anything for sure because supposedly truth is an “irreducible plurality.”[3]

Well, unfortunately even the sophisticated postmoderns will eventually have to admit that maybe this really isn’t thinking very clearly at all. You see, the statement—truth is not absolute—is actually a self-refuting statement. The reason being, for you to even know that no one could ever really know anything for sure, you would already have to know everything that was true in order to evaluate the truth of this particular statement.

But then again, since you could never know anything for sure, no one could even believe what has just been said; because if no one could ever know anything for sure, then we couldn’t really know if that statement itself was true. Does your brain hurt; in a way that’s good. It means that you’re still using it and not shutting it off as these unknowing know-it-alls do as they go mentally off-loading through their postmodern Wonderland of Humpty Dumpty language.

You know, I realize that I’m hopelessly old-fashioned; but I think it would just be a whole lot easier for people to read the text of the Bible and then let it speak for itself. Work with me here, let us just suppose for a minute that those of us who are orthodox Christians are a little brighter than a growing number of leaders within the emerging/evangelical movement apparently think we are; in love as they appear with wisdom of men.

What if we’ve read something in the Bible that they cannot refute no matter how many hours they sit over a mug of microbrew discussing ridiculous non-reasoning propositions such as I’ve just outlined above. What if Jesus knew just a little bit more about human nature than we do; what if He knows today in this ecumenical-seeker driven-emerging-word faith-postevangelical church that we have completely turned His mission and message backward?

Absolute Truth And The Mind Of Christ

Look it up for yourself and you will find that no where did our Lord ever preach, “God loves you just as you are.” It’s also true that Jesus taught God’s love was conditional—as in “repent, and surrender yourself to Me, because I Am your Creator and it was you who rebelled against Me.” You see, the whole illogical structure of those people-pleasing postmodern “Christ-followers” collapses when we look at the Bible like this: God is supernatural and by definition we just cannot assume that we will always have natural explanations for Who He is, etc.

It’s only by what the one true and living God has said in His revelation concerning Himself—given to mankind through the Holy Scripture in the Bible—that we may know what He wishes us to know about His nature and what He does. Now, once we understand that God is just a wee bit more powerful than we are we begin to see a little light, and then we can steer ourselves clear of philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

You need to know that what’s being missed amidst all of the navel-contemplating and “deep” maze-like philoso-theological musings, which so many caught in corrupt Contemplative Spirituality/Mysticism seem to get prefer to get involved in—is this: 

Yet among the mature we do impart wisdom, although it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are doomed to pass away. But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glory. None of the rulers of this age understood this, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”— these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God.

For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual. The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one. “For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:6-16)

Unfortunately, one who refuses to listen to sound Biblical reason will still prefer to do their little spiritual “soft-shoe” while they chase their spiritual tails in front of huge mirrors heavily obscured by satanic smoke. However, the words that we just read give us the refutation of the enemy’s pet line of illogic. The likes of which has been espoused by almost every Emergent Church person I have been involved with regarding absolute truth and whether or not we can know what Christ actually taught about how He wants us to approach the Christian faith.

The argument is summed up as this: “Yes, perhaps there is such a thing as absolute truth, but as humans the problem is that we are not able to fully perceive this truth as it is continually unfolding.” The first couple of times you are hit with this it really can stop you in your tracks. That’s how Satan works. He takes a little bit if truth and then forcefully twists it until its mangled beyond recognition; but this unregenrate line of reasoning actually fails to take into account the supernatural aspect of the Christian faith.

For Christ is God Himself in human flesh, and He taught us that we must be born again; and that once this happens, then God the Holy Spirit—the Spirit of Truth—comes to live within the Christian. And now consider that, uh-oh, God has revealed—to us this absolute Truth—to us through the Spirit, Who is the Spirit of Truth. So what we are seeing here is, despite how “nice” someone may be, in spite of how moral their religion might be, or even how serene, silent, and sincere their quest for communing with God might be — no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.

Looks like we’re getting into a realm here that is supernatural, and exclusive, because God also tells us that those who are not born again, who are not indwelt by God the Holy Spirit do — not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. However conversely, those of us who are in Christ can understand the things of God that are spiritually discerned because we have the mind of Christ.

Once we come to realize this, we can now understand that Christian faith is the only way to know God, which is what Jesus told us — “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). And emerging false teachers e.g. like Samir Selmanovic[4] and Shane Hipps[5] speculatulating unbelievers can know God apart from Christ and are already indwell by God are mistaken; unless…of course, the Bible is wrong. Ah, but now we’re right back again to Genesis 3:1, are we not: Yea, hath God said?

Do you recognize the work of Satan when it’s presented to you? Good. So, why don’t more evangelical leaders?

End Notes:

[1] Gene Veith, Jr., Postmodern Times: A Christian Guide to Contemporary Thought and Culture [Wheaton: Crossway, 1994] , 193, 198, 199.

[2] http://tinyurl.com/36o6ky8, accessed 5/1/12.

[3] John Franke, Manifold Witness: The Plurality of Truth [Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2009], 3.

[4] Samir Selmanovic, “The Sweet Problem of Inclusiveness – Finding Our God in the Other,” in An Emergent Manifesto of Hope, Doug Pagitt and Tony Jones editors [Grand Rapids: Baker, 2007], 196.

[5] See Shane Hipps Exposed.

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