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Boston Globe: "the truth is that for all its apparent strength, the fundamentalist sun is setting on all horizons"
Wed, 12/05/2012 - 1:48pmLink
Hit piece that lumps Christian fundamentalists with Islamic fundamentalists.
Wed, 12/05/2012 - 2:05pmLink
How backward we are
How backward we are:
- A COHORT of ultra-conservative American Protestants drew up a list of non-negotiable beliefs they insisted any genuine Christian must subscribe to
- The cornerstone, though, was a belief in the literal inerrancy of every syllable of the Bible ...
- ... reaches back selectively into its own tradition and exhumes some text or rite or pattern, declaring it to be the bedrock of faith. For Protestant fundamentalists, it was a righteous society in which, they believed, a verbally inspired Bible had held sway
- Almost from its inception, American Protestant fundamentalism split into warring factions. Its bellicosity toward “liberals and modernists” was quickly turned on fellow fundamentalists who were seen as not tough enough on the enemy. (Comment: I think they are right on this point)
- Fundamentalism is defined by its one-way-only exclusivism
Wed, 12/05/2012 - 2:59pmLink
It is a hit-piece. The author accuses fundamentalists of reaching back "selectively" into tradition...but he seems quite selective himself.
1) I remember mentioning the series "The Fundamentals" as being the closest thing we have to a founding document. I seem to remember getting smacked down by one or two commenters here. Not sure how I feel about that same idea being expressed by Mr. Cox.
2) As Jim mentioned above, Cox's observation about the fractious nature of Christian fundamentalists are spot-on. Many of these groups remind me of the Southern states during the Civil War, who were so intent on maintaining their own independence that they would not cooperate with the other states, even in the face of an overwhelming enemy. It should be instructive to us that the South lost.
3) He is only partially right in his analysis of Latin American Christianity. Here is what he says:
Surveys have shown that the rapid growth of evangelical Protestantism in Latin America has not produced a replication of the American religious right, but rather a moderate leftward tilt. A majority of Brazilian evangelicals, for example, voted for President Lula, who ran as a Workers Party candidate.
Lula's election came as voters became increasingly tired of the corrupt government they had endured during the past decades, and as Lula changed his image from radical Castro clone to savvy "man of the people". He and his successor have been abe to count on the votes of people across the religious spectrum.
Today, Brazilian Christians, including many self-defined fundamentalists--are on the forefront of movements to combat encroaching "pro-choice" and "gay-rights" movements.
Also, it bears keeping in mind that much of the "Protestant" growth here in Brazil is due to the explosion of "health and wealth", neo-pentecostal churches, like the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God, and its evil spawn, the International Church of the Grace of God, and the Worldwide Church of the Power of God. They view God and government the same way: as giant beneficiaries obligated to give them whatever their heart desires.
Wed, 12/05/2012 - 5:03pmLink
Sun set on this article in 2009
This article is from 2009.?.?
Wed, 12/05/2012 - 8:06pmLink
Another missive from the heights of the Ivory Tower
This article sounds like it was written by a Freshman at a junior college trying to impress his atheistic teacher of the comparative religions class. It is so full of stereotypes, cherry-picked "facts," and made-up information it is useless. One of my favorite parts:
However, the truth is that for all its apparent strength, the fundamentalist sun is setting on all horizons. Throughout the Muslim world growing numbers of people are becoming impatient with violent groups that, in the name of Allah, seem capable of killing but incapable of producing jobs, food, or health care.
Can anyone say, "Arab Spring"? Yes, many are getting impatient but there are more that are voting in "fundamentalist" groups like Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood to be their rulers.
This article should be filed with the "Is God Dead?" Time Magazine article of April 8, 1966.
Thu, 12/06/2012 - 10:55amLink
Harvey Cox was big news in 1966
As a new youth pastor in 1966 I bought and read Harvey Cox's book The Secular City so that I could understand the radical liberal theological mindset while establishing a campus ministry at Illinois State University.
The copy of that book that is still on my shelf says in it's opening statement, "Secularization is the liberation of man from religious and metaphysical tutelage..." At that time Professor Cox was even a threat to the "liberal" Mainline Protestant establishment because he challenged their status quo.
Over 45 years later it is manifestly evident that the liberal Mainline Protestant denominations in the USA have declined drastically in numbers as members have fled to more conservative churches or have joined the growing ranks of people called "nones" with regard to religious affiliation. Surely the retired professor knows that. So, it is comical that he now postulates a worldwide conspiracy theory that lumps all kinds of disparate religious, political and cultural "fundamentalists" into a common caricature.
Cox, after promoting the secularization of religion and society during his academic career, is now recognizing that spiritualization is the wave of the future? Seems like secularization is the movement that is being propped-up by elitist schemes of social engineering, legislative/judicial edicts and inflexible doctrinaire. He just can’t abide any absolute truth claims – except his own?
Fri, 12/07/2012 - 3:16pmLink
Well said Gerry. Harvey Cox's
Well said Gerry. Harvey Cox's theology has been ever-changing. In fact, some describe him as a theologian in search of a theology. He has tended to take up with the latest movements in society to form his direction. Since the 1980s he has been fascinated with the Charismatic movement. It is odd that he points to the Charismatic movement as the wave of the future away from "fundamentalism," and mentions their de-emphasis of doctrine. In fact, most writers (particularly secular writers) would lump nearly all Charismatics in with "Fundamentalists." Whatever interpretations they make, Charismatics generally believe all the Bible is God's Word. In today's media that qualifies you as a "Fundamentalist."