We need to be ready for the next false philosophy—in a year, in five years, or in a decade—that will spawn the next cultural revolution. I can’t predict what it will be, but I know it will happen. I also know what we can do to be ready, prevent Christian defectors, and answer the challenge when it arrives.
Christians have been caught off guard. The current revolution sweeping society today was largely unexpected by most believers. That’s understandable in one sense. No one is a prophet. Who knows what new philosophy will capture the culture’s attention? In another sense, it is our fault that so many believers have embraced a false philosophy—critical theory—and are attempting to parrot it back into the church. There’s a simple reason why: lack of training.
Sadly, my thesis here is doomed from the get-go. Claiming that Christians need more training is a yawner. Mention the word “education,” and eyes glaze over. Boring! There’s no pizzazz to claiming that the antidote to our failure is training. Virtually no one gets excited when you suggest adding theology and apologetics classes to the weekly diet of believers. But that’s precisely why we’ve failed to protect believers from succumbing to critical theory.
Few Christians even knew what it was before it came crashing on the scene. Critical theory is a philosophy that is at odds with the Christian worldview. Instead of teaching that humans are valuable creatures made in God’s image, it says we are defined by our classification in groups: sex, race, class, and gender identity, to name a few. Instead of the main problem being sin—breaking God’s laws—it says the main problem is the oppression of others. Instead of the solution being divine (and human) forgiveness, it says the solution is activism to overthrow those in power and correct the inequality. Instead of the ultimate goal being a restored relationship with God, it says the goal is liberation from oppression.
Though critical theory differs from Christianity in fundamental ways, far too many Christians embraced it. Why? They didn’t recognize its ideas before they became mainstream. Instead, they became intrigued by its novelty and syncretized it with their faith.
That’s why we need to be ready for the next false philosophy—in a year, in five years, or in a decade—that will spawn the next cultural revolution. I can’t predict what it will be, but I know it will happen. I also know what we can do to be ready, prevent Christian defectors, and answer the challenge when it arrives. Here are two ways to prepare for the next revolution: