Mark Bertrand says that the world he “had been led to fear growing up in the Church is not actually the world we live in.” It turns out that the moral relativism that we feared would turn the world to anarchy and chaos never materialized. Much of what we feared actually came to pass, just not in the way we thought it would.
The new world has turned out to be a world that loves “the social gospel, but without the gospel,” to paraphrase Joseph Bottum.
Mark talks with host Mike Schutt about this strange turn of events. We now live in the midst of “an irreligious culture” that still “behaves in fundamentally religious ways.” As Mark says, “The moralist of today is the irreligious offspring of the mainline Protestants who dominated the society of yesteryear.”
How did we get here, and what are thoughtful Christians to make of this state of affairs? It seems the best way to respond to the New Moralism is likely not to return to the Old Moralism. But what role does the Church have to play in all of this?
J. Mark Bertrand is a novelist and pastor living in South Dakota. His crime noir works are Back on Murder, Pattern of Wounds, and Nothing to Hide. His book [Re]Thinking Worldview:Learning to Think, Live, and Speak in this World (Crossway 2007) is a great primer on Christian thought and action, and he serves on the faculty of Worldview Academy. He blogs at the world-renowned Bible Design Blog, sharing thoughts and photos on a multitude of design issues. His initial claim to fame was that he was interviewed by Ken Myers on Mars Hill Audio Journal, volume 90, which also features Mike Schutt talking about Redeeming Law.
Mark was also a guest on Episode 46 of Cross & Gavel, the most downloaded episode in the podcast’s history.