After the critique of Christian theology got underway in earnest in the West—beginning with Cherbury, Blount, and Toland in the seventeenth century; continuing with Voltaire, D’Holbach, Gibbon, Hume, Paine, Collins, Turner, and numerous others in the eighteenth century; continuing with Feuerbach, Shelly, Eliot, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Stanton, Bradlaugh, Ingersoll,
By J. H. McKenna, Ph.D | Humanist Plus
Robertson, and many others of the nineteenth century; and following up in the twentieth century with Twain, Freud, Russell, Kaufmann, Martin, and numerous others—some very smart (but intellectually dishonest) Christian theologians made a decision to dodge critiques by revising theology. This became known as revisionist or liberal theology, a tactic Sigmund Freud labeled ‘intellectual misdemeanor.’ Here’s the very latest USA tort language regarding the crime:
Perpetrators retain ancient theological terms while utterly redefining those terms and claiming that new definitions are not radically new versions of the terms but are linearly connected to ancient concepts.
That’s now a misdemeanor in any night court in America, with a $50 fine and 15 hours of community service. To show how the perps operate, let’s look at several ideas, beginning with the topper-most of the popper-most idea, God.
Liberal revisionist: ‘God? Certainly I believe in God! But let me tell you what I mean by that.’
What follows by way of explanation and definition will be something you have never heard before in your life. It might be elegant—and even credible. But it is NOT linked in any linear way to the ancient idea of ‘God.’ It is really a radical break, a new idea.
‘God,’ the term, is retained but redefined out of all proportion to three thousand years of understanding about the concept of God. God is no longer the great personality of the Bible but is remade so as to escape the charge of anthropomorphism. God is converted into something like the Tao, a formless force that, while being analogous to what we experience as personality in human beings, is not a ‘person’ at all.
Certainly revisionists believe in God, but the word ‘God’ means something very different in the revisionist’s mouth.