Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Post-atheist society?

Mark Berry at way out west has this interesting post:
The Bishop of Lichfield said this in his Evangelism Sunday address...
We may be a post-Christian society but equally we are a post-atheist society. Religion of all sorts is everywhere.
This is an interesting remark. Mark goes on to ask some questions:
is this blind faith and unrealistic optimism... is it a true reflection of a culture 're-enchanted'... I suppose many people might struggle with his use of the word 'Religion"... but if we understand it as "re-ligio" the desire to re-connect with the spiritual/creator/divine, maybe that helps? I guess he was speaking to the church, so his use of church language should be expected... My problem is that these kinds of statements are easy to make but much harder to unpack and ultimately engage with. Perhaps what they do most is to simply salve the conscious of a spectator church?
Mark's last comment I think is very accurate. Those of us who lean toward wrestling with the issues of being the church and not simply doing church, often make statements that may sound good but which are very hard to unpack. Changing church direction, someone has said, is like turning the Titantic. But that's easy in comparison to what we want to see happen. We are looking for a dna change, a cultural change in & of the church - so that we live like Jesus - because we are letting him live in us. And when you come right down to it, if we are not letting Jesus live in us, are we really Christian?

& so to go back to Mark's statement, it's a lot easy to "salve the conscious of a spectator church."

1 comment:

The Righteousness of God said...

Anything that comes been us and God (preventing us from having a harmonious relationship with Him) is sin. Anything we put ahead of God is an idol. Many do not have a harmonious relationship with their Creator. So post-theism is really nothing new under the sun. Much of man-kind has been in a hostile relationship with God since the garden. Rebellion is it as it is.

Those 'comfortable' in the body - may have a real reason to feel uncomfortable. I don't feel compelled to nuture or smooth another's feelings when it conflicts with Abba's will.