This all got me thinking some more about postmodernity.
My good friend Rielly loves to point out to me (and I think rightfully so) that modernity was no more friendly to Christianity or to biblical Christian thought than postmodernity is. Both are inherently secular philosophies with positives and negatives which must be sorted through and accordingly either accepted or rejected.
Even with Rielly’s voice floating around in the back of my head, I started thinking… perhaps postmodernity is more inherently opposed to Christianity. Off the top of my head I came up with four reasons to think this is so:
- Declaration of ethical absolutes. Scripture declares moral absolutes based on the character and revealed will of God. These are true regardless of time and / or culture. North American postmodernity, based on existentialism, rejects this notion out of hand.
- The centrality of metanarrative. Central to Christianity is the God of Christianity. He is one who transcends time and all creation. He has providentially ordered all things according to his good and perfect will. All of history, then, is one story, centred on the revelation of his Son–the image of his glory–who redeems his people for himself. Metanarrative is what holds our whole worldview together.
- The necessity of truth and intent contained in words and phrases. If there is no objective meaning contained within a text which can be determined through proper hermeneutical method, then again, our whole worldview crashes. Biblical Christianity cannot be sustained if it is impossible to derive meaning from a text apart from the biases of the reader.
- The concept of truth and its ‘knowability.’ This is the element of postmodernity that most Christians love to write about and pick on, so I’ll leave it with only one comment here. The person of Jesus Christ is Truth Incarnate. Truth is knowable, because Truth became man. If we cannot accept that proposition, the whole faith is meaningless.