Why Not Advancement? Are We More Advanced with Thought and Morality Now?
Sure, we have iPhones, and Teslas and people are no longer being stoned to death or crucified (at least as far as I know); but one could beg to question, are we more advanced now? Are we more sophisticated with our thinking and morality then we were 700 hundred years ago, 1700 years ago, or even thirty years ago for that matter? I was a kid in the ’80s, I used to ride my huffy bike 5-10 miles away from my house when I was as young as 8, and we lived in a not so lovely part of town. Now with my children, 8 and 11, I am not comfortable with them riding 5-10 miles away from home without a grownup accompanying them, and we live in a beautiful rural area. Have we as humans really advanced? In this writing, we will look at 1. What is wrong with advancement thinking? 2. How can Christians respond to advancement thinking?
Advancement thought is like bait, attractive to the hungry fish, but with a hook in it. It captures the mind but leads to despair.Today’s world seems to have changed tremendously in just my short 38 years under the sun. As I study apologists from 300 AD, I am so impressed by their logic, reason, writing, and ability to think deeply. The modern worldview allows no objectivity because it defines the mind as an effect of the process. The mind is thus controlled by the process.It appears modern man has gained iPhones, and modern conveniences, but has lost the freedom to think within the narrow parameters of naturalism. Contrastly, Christians can respond to this current lack of thought confined by the shackles of manmade settings by using our God-given free will and staying God rooted first, not being conformed by the ways of this fallen world. Because when God is your guide, and not naturalism “God could freely choose to grant intellectual freedom to mankind because God is an absolutely free sovereign being, but there is no basis for true freedom if nature is the only reality.”
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness but denying its power (2 Tim:1-5). It seems like today, most people are keeping up with the Kardashians, and social media, and can no longer use their God-given minds, as they define themselves as mere advanced less hairy apes rather than children of God; this is the problem with advancement. People are all about #selflove and #selfcare, and follow science like it is God, denying that God exists. When humanity defines themselves according to Darwin’s theory, they halt the God-given ability to advance truly, and establish themselves within the natural parameters of naturalism, versus the infinite settings as divine children of God; one outlook is bleak and depressing, while the other is supernaturally awesome and glorious. Today love is a key world for the secular world. The music, the books, the speeches of modern men and women are filled with calls for love; but it is an impatient love, a short-suffering love, a feeling rather than, as it is biblically, an unselfish activity directed towards others for their benefit.
Christians can respond to the naturalistic philosophy by not conforming to the ways of the world, “do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Rom 12:2). Christians can allow God to take up the most real estate in their minds, that is, believers of Christ can stay rooted in God first, then go into the world. Our freedom, our moral responsibility, our intellect, our spiritual life, our significance are granted by and follow from an indefinitely good and powerful God who is an adequate source for all human significance.As Christians, we can only use our free will in this postmodern time and stay God rooted. Loss of God as an essential part of one’s life and worldview is a loss of the only sufficient foundations for meaning, hope, and significance.Jesus answered, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the father except through me” (John 14:6).
L. Russ Bush, The Advancement Keeping the Faith in an Evolutionary Age (Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2003), 109
L. Russ Bush, The Advancement Evolutionary Age (Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2003), 49