A Surising Liberal Source
Tags: Church Growth, Church Growth Movement, political liberalism, theological liberalism, Charles Darwin, Peter Jones, Spirit Wars, Steven Davies, Modernist Movement, Religious Left, New Age Spirituality, Eastern Mysticism, Gnosticsm, Classical liberalsim, Christian Orthodoxy, Jesus Seminar, Roger Miller, Brave New World
Ironically, political liberalism found its original American roots in the Christian theological liberalism that rose up in the late 19th Century under the umbrella of Modernism. Modernism is a departure from historic Christian beliefs in order to submit to the will of rationalism as proposed by the Enlightenment. According to The Church in History, . .the Modernists place the mind of man above the Bible, and they place reason above faith. Because they denied the supernatural world, these materialists forsook the belief in the virgin birth or deity of Christ, miracles, and special revelation or the infallibility of Scriptures.
In an attempt to relate to society modernists sought to adapt Christianity to evolution. It was Charles Darwin who led these liberals to deny the truth of Scripture. Yet according to Peter Jones in Spirit Wars, ultimately the Darwinian evolutionary base of secular humanism that the entire Modernist movement was founded on collapsed. Even thought it is still being propagated in the schools, evolution among serious scientists has been discredited for the sham that it always was.
In the mean time, without a belief in the authority of Scripture, the modernists were left with nothing to talk about. As a result secular humanism eventually destroyed the liberal church that, while once experiencing growth during the 50s and 60s, found its congregations fleeing from its midst. And so the modernists lost interest in their liberal interpretations of the Bible. It was in the midst of this weakened church that the counterculture movement rose up to challenge the church that had departed from its first love.
The liberal church needed some where to go from there. Rather than returning to God they sunk to new lows as they turned to the hippies to get religion. But this was not a return to the biblical doctrine that they departed from. Once associated with a religious rationalism and social gospel activism, Jones writes, the Religious Left has discovered spirituality, not the spirituality of the Bible but that of paganism. In order to push their way back to the forefront these liberals discovered the wonders of New Age spirituality to save the planet and to meet the needs of a new post 60s culture thirsting after Hinduism. In this vein left-wing scholar Steven Davies wrote, Those seeking the place where Jesus is ought not to seek Jesus Himself, but will find what they seek in themselves. Classical liberalism, wrote Jones, denied the truth claims of Christian orthodoxy. Todays liberalism simply relativizes Christianity as one religious option among many so that it can participate in the coming unification of the planet and of religion, advancing mankind along its evolutionary path.
In order to propagate 60s Eastern Mysticism in the church, liberal religious groups such as the Jesus Seminar promote Gnosticism, which the church fathers of the first centuries fought against. While claiming that Gnosticism was an alternate, authentic expression of Christianity, they have dug up ancient Gnostic texts from that era to justify the creation of a new Gnostic bible.
The fact that the body of Christ was
purged of Gnosticism in
Therefore, in true pagan fashion, the liberal church of today has turned to envision a Brave New World where distinctions between the sexes, between right and wrong, between true and false are blurred. A tolerance for all with the exception of evangelicals has been instituted. Satan does not exist. Fundamentalist outsiders who deserve to be scorned have simply drummed him up. Hence we have the culture wars today that find the political left and right on opposite sides of the fence.
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