Geochristian has expressed much of my views on current culture wars. Cultural war is an ongoing presence in every culture and country. Much of the time we simply do not recognize that it is happening. Ignoring this lets us remain certain that our own culture is the proper and “ordained” view. After all, what we have and do must be what is best. I, too, have bought into these view from time to time. I do not know anyone who has not.
Ronald Reagan was the antichrist.
Barack Obama is conducting a war against Christianity.
Anyone who believes humans are causing global warming is a left-wing, socialist, environmental wacko.
Anyone who doesn’t believe humans are causing global warming is an ignoramus.
Christians who accept an old Earth or evolution are either dangerous compromisors, or maybe not Christians at all.
Young-Earth creationists are just plain stupid.
I’ve heard all of these, and much more, from Christians.
I get weary of the “culture wars” that pervade much of our society and the Christian church, whether in politics, the environment, origins (creation and evolution), or even theology.
What I get tired of is not the debate—I have strong thoughts on some of these issues—but the level of acrimony and demonization that characterizes much of the debate, even among Christians.
It is good to be passionate and zealous, as long as we are passionate and zealous about things that are primary, rather than secondary or tertiary in importance, and that we play by Biblical rules of integrity, love, and humility.
C. John Collins has a good section on “culture wars” in Chapter 20 of Science & Faith: Friends or Foes:
It’s pretty common to hear that we’re in a culture war—the traditionalists and the secularists are fighting over who will control the culture. There is a sense in which the image is right: as we will see in the next chapter, there are worldviews that are at odds with each other, and therefore it’s no surprise that we find conflict. The image is a dangerous one, though, because it can lead us to look at everything in combatant terms: people who disagree with us become our enemies, and we have to defeat them. If you are my enemy, and I am a Christian, then—even if you’re a Christian too—you must be morally defective.
Three further dangers follow from this warfare imagery. The first is that we can forget that worldviews involve not just philosophical positions but also moral commitments; and that back behind unbelief there lies a demonic enslaver. As Paul put it in Ephesians 6,
12For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm… 18[Pray] at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints…
There is a spiritual component to this battle; and therefore, all our intellectual efforts must express our faithfulness to Christ and must be bathed in prayer. We must never use the weapons of unbelief—dishonesty, slander……………
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