Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The post-modern push

The post-modern era has brought a radical shift within some of the churches in the west today. We do live in a time that is after the modern age. Modernism in many ways sprang from the enlightenment period where much emphasis was put on reason and empirical science. Perhaps the biggest shift dealt with the field of epistemology (how we obtain knowledge). From the modern point of view knowledge could be grounded in absolute or objective truth. In a modern framework, truth could be known. However, those who hold to a post-modern view see truth as being subjective in many ways.

Deconstructionism has played a major role in post-modern thinking. Jacques Derrida, is commonly refereed to as the author of deconstructive thought. Deconstructionism [1] could be simplified as follows, "There is no grand metanarrative." To boil this down further, truth is not objective or absolute. A grand metanarrtive, would therefore, be objective or absolute, which the post-modern's would deny. It is this aspect of post-modernism that scares many Christians today. For when the grand metanarrative (objective truth) is called into question, the whole nature of Scripture and reality becomes incredibly fuzzy.

The post-modern push within the Church today has been explored and will continue to be explored in how it relates to orthodoxy. There are several points to be addressed in the coming blogs. What are the effects of post-modernism in the church today, specifically the "Emergent Church" movement? What views are espoused by the "Emergent Church" movement? Finally, How should the Christian community handle itself in a post-modern society?

1 Jacques Derrida and his views of Deconstructionism

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