Saturday, 6 July 2013

Cultural defeat

This timely quote from T E Hulme has been repeated by Peter Mullen on Cranmer's blog today:
“We have been beaten because our enemies’ theories have conquered us. We have played with those to our own undoing. Not until we are hardened again by conviction are we likely to do any good. In accepting the theories of the other side, we are merely repeating a well-known historical phenomenon. The Revolution in France came about not so much because the forces which should have resisted were half-hearted in their resistance. They themselves had been conquered intellectually by the theories of the revolutionary side. An institution or a civilisation is beaten only when it has lost faith in itself, when it has been penetrated by the ideas that are working against it.”
I have been reflecting on this matter somewhat in recent months. What does cultural defeat look like? Part of it is when your enemy's ideas have penetrated so widely and deeply, that you actually adopt, practice and teach them without even knowing it. Apply that thought to Bible-preaching churches in the UK today. The mantras of personal choice, the individualistic way of life, acceptance of non-Christian, secular education, the lack of distinction between father and mother within a family, the lack of respect by children for their parents, the belief in the state as universal provider and problem-solver, the love of an easy-going, entertainment-based culture, the worship of triviality and of "cool": are these basic outlooks and features significantly less prominent inside Bible-preaching churches than outside of them? In former times, the unbelieving paid at least lip service to Christian truths, and went along with them - today, instead of exposing and refuting them, many British evangelicals follow the beliefs and practices of secularists. That's what cultural defeat looks like.

On which note, this headline popped up in the Telegraph at around the same time: Welby calls for Church to join the sexual ‘revolution’. The piece goes on to claim that the Archbishop is now planning to outsource relationships education in Church of England Schools to Stonewall. It finishes with Stonewall slapping him down and making it clear that they'll require a much larger dose of penance before they will even consider granting him absolution. When the foremost apologists for what God calls "abomination" disdain your attempts to curry their favour, even whilst you sacrificially offer up your young to appease them, you can be very sure that you're doing it wrong.

Are evangelicals in the UK, defeated? Yes; because we have not been faithful to the truths that were delivered to us plainly in Scripture. Is Jesus defeated? That's not possible - he's the Risen one; alive from the dead. His resurrection power is already unleashed in this age and this world. The solution begins with turning again to him.


Ned Kelly said...

Hi David,
Did you censor my last post or have you just not got around to it?

David Anderson said...

I censored it!