“To know we are not alone, that our identity is not random but has a history and a meaning shared with others—that our existence has its own special kind of beauty—this is the great force of art to people moving against alienation”—Adrienne Rich, from “The Ink-Smudged Diaries of Adrienne Rich” (via wwnorton)
“That last word—simulate—is key. The technologies that have advanced since the seventies are mainly either medical technologies or information technologies—largely, technologies of simulation. They are technologies of what Jean Baudrillard and Umberto Eco called the “hyper-real,” the ability to make imitations that are more realistic than originals. The postmodern sensibility, the feeling that we had somehow broken into an unprecedented new historical period in which we understood that there is nothing new; that grand historical narratives of progress and liberation were meaningless; that everything now was simulation, ironic repetition, fragmentation, and pastiche—all this makes sense in a technological environment in which the only breakthroughs were those that made it easier to create, transfer, and rearrange virtual projections of things that either already existed, or, we came to realize, never would. Surely, if we were vacationing in geodesic domes on Mars or toting about pocket-size nuclear fusion plants or telekinetic mind-reading devices no one would ever have been talking like this. The postmodern moment was a desperate way to take what could otherwise only be felt as a bitter disappointment and to dress it up as something epochal, exciting, and new.”—David Graeber
The American culture is rapidly becoming less and less of a Christian culture. Even in the South, which has traditionally been called the Bible belt, people still call themselves “Christian,” but their Christianity has no influence on their lives. These people know how to answer questions such as “Are you a Christian”, and do so without thinking about what they are saying. As America moves further away from Christianity, it is not simply moving into nothingness. A postmodern, secular ideology is taking its place. This postmodern, secular ideology can be characterized by its relativism and rejection of absolute truth. In this culture preachers are charged with the difficult task of preaching absolute truth to people who reject the very notion of truth itself. They should strive to accomplish this task by preaching expositional sermons which uncover the absolute truths found in Scripture.
But why? Why should preachers be committed to expositional Preaching? What does expositional preaching do that other forms of preaching cannot do? A recent 9 Marks article answers this very question. The article presents two reasons why expositional preaching is relevant for postmoderns. First, it unfolds the multi faceted riches of scriptural truth in a way that corresponds to the kind of diversity that postmoderns love to celebrate. Second, it demonstrates and proves that the Word of God is not merely propositional, it’s effectual. Expositional preaching is important for postmoderns because it clearly states biblical truth, changing people’s lives. For more information check out the 9 Marks article.
“The absence of embodiment does strange things to people. It dematerialises their existence and enables the fashioning of new identities fit for the postmodern age. There is no need to be limited by the physical, the actual, the person one has been up until now.”—Susan Bordo, Bodies p. 79 (via unstableforms)