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世俗主义与教会  

2011-08-06 09:31:00|  分类: 教会议题 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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世俗主义与教会


诚之译自:http://greenbaggins.wordpress.com/2011/07/05/secularism-and-the-church/


撒但在今天用什么武器攻击教会?John Sittema在他的书With a Shepherd’s Heart(《牧人的心》)中列出五项(他称之为“狼牙”teeth of the wolves):世俗主义,物质主义,相对主义,实用主义和女性主义(49页)。下面几篇博文会讨论这些“狼牙”。我们必须清楚这些敌人,不只为保护自己,也保护其他的羊,不受这些狼牙的攻击。

Sittema 对世俗主义的定义很精彩:“神的创造有「定时性」(timed-ness)——在时间内的,受时间限制的,而神看一切所造的都甚好。但是当被造界的「定时性」,当我们作为被造物的现在性(here and now),吞没了我们的永恒观,并占据所有人的心思和注意力时,你所得到的就是世俗主义。”(50页)其带来的结果就是:“只有对此生(here and now)有价值的宗教,才具有真正的意义。”这对人的思想的影响如下:1. 追求即时的满足(instant gratification);2. 用二元论的二分法(dualistic dichotomy)来绝对区分圣与俗(相对于简单的区分);3. 对“适切性”(relevance)的痴迷。

如何对抗这个敌人呢?Sittema 提出三点建议:1. 辨认“即时满足”这个敌人(自我欺骗、盲目是世俗主义的关键特色);2. 教导圣经的管家原则(特别要装备执事们做到这点);3. 问自己是否对圣与俗有刻板的分割,而不是简单的区分。我还会加上几项建议:教导神的子民寄居者/天路客(pilgrimage)的原则。注意“世俗主义”和“这个世界”或“这个时代”在字源上的关联。我强烈建议要指出新天新地所应许的福分,因为这个世界非我家,我们盼望一个更美的家乡。当然,作为好管家,我们要看顾神托付给我们的这个世界。但是,我们是寄居者,我们应该用末世的眼光来看待我们现世的生活。

附原文:
Secularism and the Church

John Sittema’s excellent book entitled With a Shepherd’s Heart has several good chapters on what he calls the “teeth of the wolves.” These are the ways in which Satan is generally attacking the church today. He lists five main attacks: secularism, materialism, relativism, pragmatism, and feminism (p. 49). I’d like to do a few blog posts on these “teeth.” It is crucial for us to recognize these enemies and not only be on guard ourselves, but also guard our flocks from these teeth.

So the first one is secularism. Sittema’s definition is quite excellent: “There is a timed-ness to God’s creation; and according to God’s own assessment, it is good! (par. break, LK) But when that timed-ness of creation, when the here and now of our creatureliness, gobbles up any sense of our eternity and occupies all of man’s heart and mind and attention, you have secularism” (p. 50). The upshot of it is that “Only if religion has value for the here and now is it of any real significance” (ibid.). The consequences for people’s thinking are several-fold: 1. instant gratification; 2. dualistic dichotomy (rather than a simple distinction) between secular and sacred, 3. obsession with relevance (pp. 51-52).

Sittema offers three suggestions for how to fight this enemy: 1. Point out the enemy of instant gratification (self-delusion and blindness are often key characteristics of secularism), 2. Teach the principles of biblical stewardship (especially equip the deacons to do this). 3. Ask people whether they have this rigid divide between secular and sacred, rather than a simple distinction. And a few more suggestions I would add: teach people the principle of pilgrimage. Noting the etymological connection of “secularism” to “this worldliness” or “this aged-ness,” I would strongly suggest pointing out the blessedness of the new heavens and the new earth, since this world is not our home. We are looking for a better country. Now, obviously, we should take care of this world as good stewards of what God has entrusted to us. Nevertheless, we are pilgrims, and that should color everything, and give us an eschatological perspective on life.
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