Is there anything to fear from Humanism? I mean, the modern
day ethical humanist may roughly adhere to a certain code though not necessarily so?so what’s wrong with it? When we look at their thought process of being ?guided by reason, inspired by
compassion, and informed by experience?to live life well and fully? we as
Christians may find common ground…but should we? Because they ethically stand on the side of God…should we as well support them?
First off, when I speak of Humanism, I am not referring to the Humanities such as the arts and literature and music?although the Humanist thinking may potentially cross over into that branch of human experience. God, the author of all things beautiful, has no charge against beautiful things. Throughout the Scriptures we many notice God looking at humans and what they do artistically as being very beautiful indeed. Thank the Lord that He gave us eyes to see what is good and the hands to mold it as well.
Thing is, the Lord gave us moral eyes to see what is true and eyelids to close those moral eyes as well?which is the grave error that ethical Humanism revels in.
You see, the modern Humanist operates on the philosophical life-stance that he or she must be ethical in attaining personal fulfillment while aspiring for humanity?s greater good?without a need of supernaturalism (not just God but any god). Oh sure, some may say that there might be a god, but even if there is a god it wouldn?t absolve them of their personal responsibility to their fellow man, is the thinking.
Many Humanists may say they draw their conclusions from material science but it doesn’t vibe with that whole ethical bit. I mean, preservation of the race can’t really be explained away with ethics so the idea of being ethical seems to draw its thinking from older ideas. Jeremy is the philosopher so he can probably offer some insight. It just sounds to me like the Stoics and the Epicureans got together and came up with a new mix?but I’ll get to that later.
Humanism is not new. I imagine that a Humanist would applaud a worldwide endeavor of uniting humanity in a global peace mission while simultaneously praising individual and corporate worth without supernatural influence. Nimrod did as much in his day, gathering humanity in an epic building project at Babel (Gen 11). The illustrated comparison may be a false assumption, but I?m sure that the end goals are the same.
Back then it was a building project, today it is an ethical pinnacle. Religion doesn’t have the market cornered on ethics?the godless can be ethical too! The shift is understandable since the movement is progressive in nature but no less dangerous. Humans change so their methods change?yet the springboard of knowledge and end goals are still frighteningly the same.
Paul dealt as much in his day while discussing the Living God (Acts 17:16-34) with the Epicureans and Stoics. Sure they had their materialistic origins (although the gods got confused in their philosophy somehow, but like I said, Humanism is progressive and always offers options) but their lives were defined by a way of conduct…be it reason or ethical pleasure.
Paul?s common ground was one based on merely their experience. Those broken down placards of forgotten temples with a pagan god?s faded name, re-chiseled with the title ?the Unknown God??this used as a thought model of the God they have suppressed and ignored and that they throw spare change to in the off chance there?s someone out there, this is the Living God whom Paul proclaimed.
That?s the problem then. Man?s name over and suppressing God?s name. Man placed on a pedestal, beyond God?proving Humanity?s individuality to live without a God. Jesus would come into the world and His ethics would be applauded, but His deity would be vehemently denied. Perhaps He died a martyr?s death, but a resurrection? Come now, don?t be absurd.
We should take a second look at the state of our world and wonder if it is not mere rebelious creation then, running rampant in their sin. That look should honestly consider that men have suppressed the knowledge of God and what we see around us is the preliminaries of the judgment of God (Rom 1:18-32). God gives them over to their futile thinking of individualistic options.
John would call this suppressed knowledge of Deity and the offered option of individuality a spirit of anti-Christ (1 John 4:3), prevalent in the world during his day and currently exulting in its continued preservation today. It is a mindset of experiential choices and offers the malleability of reformulating itself on the dictates of whatever is in vogue.
Oh but the fearful option and expectation for these who suppress the knowledge of God. Theirs is a stance that finds its origins in his Satanic Majesty as he, the Morning Star, looked at the heavenly throne with greedy eyes and sought to be like the Most High God (Isaiah 14:12-15). Now he has spoken his lies and man thinks that Man will be like the most High God in his moral decisions (Gen 3:5).
Man has proven that although he can decide and can make choices for the good?he will repeatedly choose the wrong in direct opposition to the Eternally Good that does not change. Fault, now compounded, when Deity presented Himself and man shrugged off His authority and slew Him.
Now they do the same, not with nails but with the doctrine of their minds and empty ethics based on nothing but what is right in one’s own eyes. Purely futile thinking and there will be a recompense for it.
So tread lightly, Christian, when holding hands with this sort of thinking lest you slip and realize that the very ground you have compromised is the foundational ground of the Deity and Lordship of Jesus Christ, the son of David according to the flesh and the Son of God with power as seen by the resurrection from the dead.
This is part of the Vox Apologia but I got it in too late. You may want to check out the other posts on humanism?likely dealt with more intelligently than I ever can.