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Part One The Postmodern View of Truth. Our nation was built upon principles of truth: We hold these truths to be self-evident… (Decl. of Indep.) Our postmodern.

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Presentation on theme: "Part One The Postmodern View of Truth. Our nation was built upon principles of truth: We hold these truths to be self-evident… (Decl. of Indep.) Our postmodern."— Presentation transcript:

1 Part One The Postmodern View of Truth

2 Our nation was built upon principles of truth: We hold these truths to be self-evident… (Decl. of Indep.) Our postmodern world is sadly suffering from truth decay … among many, truth is no longer 1) knowable, 2) absolute, 3) objective), or 4) universal Our modern way of thinking can be summed up in one word: Whatever… (said with a tone of apathy)

3 Pre-ModernModernPost-Modern c. 200 B.C. to 1600 A.D. c to 1960 A.D. c to present Life is governed by the objective truths accepted from the divine Truth is determined by empirical facts and moral principles Life is governed by human discoveries and human reason (science, logic) Truth is determined by empirical, scientific proof Life is governed by feelings Truth is a construct of our own mind (a culture const. or an individual const.)

4 Postmodernism is a philosophical belief that one cannot be certain about things (truths, realities) Postmodernism has affected all major aspects of our society: law, politics, science, literature, education, architecture, art, the media, religion, etc. The belief that one cannot be certain is not new (Gen. 3:1; Eccl. 1:9)

5 Frederick Nietzsche once said that convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies A belief becomes truth for a postmodernist at the moment one makes a choice to believe something; a truth for that moment and time A truth for the postmodernist is what works, what one prefers, what brings one pleasure

6 Subjective Individual worldview Pluralistic Relative Construct (ivism) Scripted / significance Narratives / fictions Multiculturalism Situationalism Deconstruction Tolerance Choice

7 That may be true for you, but that doesnt make it true for me. The way I live is my choice. You dont have a right to impose your views on me. Whatever… (said with a tone of apathy)

8 What brought about postmodernism? 1. The failure of modernism (particularly the late 1800s) to bring about a perfect world order 2. A cosmopolitan, multi-media-saturated environment 3. The vast diversity of religious and philosophical perspectives available to everyone 4. A fixed sense of identity, or one best way to live, had become lost

9 What brought about postmodernism? 5. The belief that language comes from man alone and cannot describe realities (truths) outside of man 6. The belief that written texts do not have determinate, singular knowable meaning (truth) 7. The belief that truth is formed, not by reality, but by power relationships

10 Religious beliefs (realities) are plural, subjective, and derived from ones individual worldviews Individuals construct their own truths and values (realities); no pre-existing body of knowledge No one should impose his or her ideas on other people; all ideas are equally valid; tolerance is the only binding principle; no judging or criticism People will drift in a sea of constant doubt and change; agnostic; no certainty; no proof

11 There are no objective truths; no fixed order; truth and morality are relative People will be shaped by an arbitrary set of values given to them by society If there is no objective truth, what is there to learn? Why read, study, prove, etc.? If there is no objective truth, then there are no wrong answers to questions

12 People are afraid to be certain, afraid of authority or to speak with authority People are free to believe whatever they want Religion is about a feeling not a set of values and ideals (true or false)

13 There is no absolute truth… (except for the statement that there is no absolute truth) All social constructs (beliefs) should be deconstructed… (except the belief of postmodernism which should not be deconstructed) People should not condemn… (unless its condemning condemnation) and people should be tolerant of all others… (except for people who are intolerant)

14 There is such a thing as objective truth (vv ) There is such a thing as objective truth because God is real (v. 20) If you reject God and his objective truth, you no longer have a basis for either reason or morality; anything goes; man is god (vv ) If you live a life of vain reasoning and immorality, you will reap serious consequences (v. 32)

15 NT Christians were not scripted by their culture, but they were formed by the gospel (1 Cor. 1:22-29) There is one way to God, not multiple ways: one savior (Jn. 14:6; 18:37-38; Ac. 4:12), one gospel (Gal. 1:6-9), and one church (Eph. 4:4-6) The gospel is to stay the same, not be deconstructed (2 Tim. 1:13; Jude 3)

16 For further study on the subject of postmodernism, consult the following: Gene E. Veith, Postmodern Times: A Christian Guide to Contemporary Thought and Culture (Wheaton: Crossway, 1994) Donald Carson, The Gagging of God (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1995) Stanley J. Grenz, A Primer on Postmodernism (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996) Douglas Groothuis, Truth Decay (Downers Grove: IVP, 2000)


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