Preying in Tomorrow’s “Spiritual” Culture
By Dr. Peter Jones
Once thriving Christian campus groups used to display proudly the “Big Man on Campus” who had converted to Christianity. Recently, the BMOC fell over and died, as did a view of Christianity as a culturally desirable belief system on campus. Though Tebowing is still possible, its success depends on “great discretion” that avoids politically incorrect pitfalls like assuming gender distinctions, discussing the Bible’s view of marriage, speaking of sin or affirming the uniqueness of Jesus as Savior. Young Christians who make these timeless Christian affirmations today are treated as hatemongers and shown the door. What on earth is happening? Has Christianity changed or has the culture changed?
The non-religious sociologist, Ernest Sternberg, warns of a rising powerful movement he calls “world purificationism,” a new cultural orthodoxy that seeks legal and social global power.
We are in the midst of the worldwide rise of a non-religious chiliastic [end-times] movement, preaching global human renewal and predicting apocalypse as its woeful alternative.
For the most part Sternberg is convincing, and we should heed his warnings, though he gets one or two elements seriously wrong . He describes “World puriﬁcationism” as a vast alliance of social movements that looks to a new era of social justice and sustainable development in which the diverse cultures harmoniously share the earth. Adherents think of themselves as exemplars of purity, giving birth to a pure new world, where the earth will be protected, justice will reign, and economies will be sustainable, run on alternative energy, liberated from carbon emanations. Indigenous cultures will be protected from rationalist Western criticism. Persons of diverse ethnic communities, and of all conditions of ability or disability, and of gender and transgender statuses will live in harmony and mutual appreciation. All religions will be welcome as long as they celebrate other religions.
Sternberg goes on to explain that this movement believes that ‘‘another ‘us’ is Necessary.’’ “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.” The new “us” presents history as divided between the toxicity of the past and the purity of the future. The new “us” is engaged in a cataclysmic, even apocalyptic struggle against the avowed enemy— the global monolith called “Empire,” which exerts systemic domination over the planet via US militarism, multinational corporations, the capitalist system, patriarchal domination, multinational corporations, corporate media, and technologies of surveillance—all in alliance with Zionism. “Empire” is selﬁsh, greedy, ruthless and exploitative, and heedlessly pollutes the earth. It is racist, chauvinist, sexist and colonialist, undermining indigenous cultures. In a word, the enemy is the old Western Christian civilization.
Sternberg’s disturbing analysis is right, but it suffers from two major weaknesses:
1. the religious factor is entirely absent, and
2. it skims over the transformative vision of pansexuality.
However, when you join the deepest human motivation—religious faith—to the seductive power of sexual liberation, Sternberg’s picture becomes even more believable and more disturbing. “World purificationism” fuses the formidable power of Eastern mystical enlightenment with modern science to produce a pagan “evolutionary spirituality.” Even the sky is not the limit!
Without mentioning them by name, Sternberg doubtless includes those who call themselves “Cultural Creatives,” “Progressives,” or “Integral Spiritualists,” claiming to number 50 million adherents in the US and 90 million in Europe . They plan to jump-start a global movement, not only saving their souls via “enlightenment,” but saving the planet from ecological disaster. In support of Sternberg’s analysis, today’s environmental movement is called “the largest social movement in all of human history,” driven by a spirituality that eliminates “the concept of external divine Authority…to connect with the spirit within.” This eco-spiritual agenda spreads throughout the campus via the notion of “sustainability,” which now includes homosexuality, socialism, multiculturalism and multi-faith. Life will only be truly sustainable when we are all one.
Nature-worshiping Oneism infused by evolutionary optimism is on the march. [Listen to the audio tapes of the recent think tank, “The Coming Pagan Utopia”—truthxchange.com]. Sternberg’s Empire is, in fact, a re-run of the old Roman Empire, pagan to its roots. A vast curtain of spiritual and sexual seduction is lowering on our once deeply “”Christianized” world, just as it did in seventh century BC Israel:
Righteousness stands far away; truth has stumbled in the public squares, uprightness cannot enter. .. and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey (Isa 59:14-15).
The Christian message has not changed. The culture has changed, by a mass-conversion to pagan spirituality. Believers need to understand what is occurring so that, even if we do become “prey” in evil hands, we can pray that into this growing spiritual darkness will shine the redeeming light of the Truth about Jesus, the transcendent Creator and only Savior.