The camouflaged Danger, The Blind Spot that is Humanism.
When the deal seems “too good to be true, be cautious” is a common warning used which is meant to help you be more vigilant and diligent before committing yourself. In formal management, it has been christened ‘Due Diligence’ which is a diligent, thorough and a deeper scrutiny of things or a matter, to be sure of the facts before deciding. In quantitative research which is the empirical investigation of observable phenomena through statistics, mathematical, or computational techniques, we have different methodologies that have been developed to analytically assist in more reliable decision making, typically to give a higher level of confidence to the decision maker. A seasoned and prudent leader will always try to reduce the margin of error in decision making by being more diligent in data collection and analysis. The more the data and analysis, the higher the confidence level and the lower the margin of error. The highest level of confidence is typically 99% because, statistically, there will always be a margin of error, the lowest this being 0.5% plus or minus. In her courageous and thoroughly referenced book, Confronting Christianity: 12 Hard Questions for The World’s Largest Religion, Rebecca Mclaughlin seems to challenge those questioning Christianity to only look more keenly at the contentious issues, rather than being superficial and too quick to draw conclusions. Rebecca Mclaughlin holds a PHD in renaissance literature from Cambridge university and a theology degree from Oak Hill College in London. She is a co-founder of Vocable Communications and a former vice president of content at the Veritas forum, where she spent almost a decade with Christian academics at leading secular universities.
“Look more closely, Mclaughlin argues, and the reality of suffering, the complexity of sexuality, the desire for diversity, the success of science, and other seeming roadblocks to faith become signposts. Jesus becomes not a relic from the ancient world, but our modern world’s best hope.”
Mclaughlin calls out the casual and superficial look at Christianity as dangerous and can only lead one astray. Human beings are quick to make judgement at first sight without deeper consideration and analysis of a matter before jumping into conclusion or decision. We are too quick to judge a book by its cover, even without taking the effort to read it which can only lead to the wrong conclusions. Its more convenient humanly to make quick decisions, often to please others or just to avoid the harder work of being more diligent. This attitude is dangerous and has led to the gradual and dangerous trend of men resorting to humanism and shunning of faith in God which, is a like a blind spot on the road where so many accidents take place. Many educated westerners are blinded by their education to the truth of God and slide into humanism. Mclaughlin attributes this to a trend where many people in the West are persuaded by dominant secular narratives and think they already know what Christianity is about, but she reveals many surprises in what she calls authentic Christianity.
Mclaughlin confronts all the 12 hard questions and draws from the stories in the bible, and systematically presents evidence from both secular and Christian scholarly books, to present very persuasive and compelling evidence, to provide answers to these questions. I take it as a challenge as a Christian on the need to be more diligent in presenting Christianity in both the way I live as a Christian leader and how I present scriptural truth to others. As I research on biblical financial literature that is culturally and contextually appropriate for economically empowering Christians in vulnerable communities in Kenya, I see the need to be more thorough and diligent in producing a work that will impact the lives of many vulnerable communities for the glory of God.
 Rebecca Mclaughlin, Confronting Christianity: !2 Hard Questions For The World’s Largest Religion. (Wheaton, IL., Crossway. 2018).
 Rebecca McLaughlin, Confronting Christianity: !2 Hard Questions For The World’s Largest Religion. (Wheaton, IL., Crossway. 2018)…Loc 3816 kindle.
4 responses to “The camouflaged Danger, The Blind Spot that is Humanism.”
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I really appreciate you highlighting the problem in the West of people thinking they understand Christianity but not really digging deep enough. It is a difficult task to first convince people they don’t know as much as they think they know, and then invite them to a journey of deeper questioning. Why do you think educated people are less likely to be interested in engaging in this discussion? What are the best strategies that you’ve seen to soften people to re-engage in this conversation? Bless you my brother as you extend the goodness of God to the vulnerable in Kenya!
Thank you Jenn, the same attitude is also in Africa especially among the educated but to a lower extent. I think McLaughlin’s effort to dig deeper and confront the hard questions is definitely a big help to challenge this attitude. As Christian intellectuals and Christian leaders, we’ve to go the extra mile to present the Gospel rightfully, arming ourselves to answer any hard questions, and confront other issues that are roadblocks to faith.
Thanks so much for reminding us to dig deeply and examine the evidence with precision. Too often we can be prone to be superficial in our review and our view, how then can we counter the arguments of Christianity’s detractors. Thanks again for your perspective and insights.
Harry, thank you for asking this question, I believe there’s no short cut other than being able to explain our faith and also disciple others to a point where they can defend their faith.