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The Great Awakenings

The Essence of Contemporary American Religion

Part Twelve


By Shlomo Phillips © 1989
(most recent update February 24, 2015)

Post Christian America

Today Christianity is no longer the most significant religious presence anywhere on earth, although it remains popular among some Americans and others. Secular Humanism, an essentially New Age spirituality, and religious apathy have clearly replaced Christianity in most areas outside of the Islamic world which is becoming ever more religious and dominant.

Eastern religious concepts continue to make significant inroads into the American psyche as well as we've discussed. The importance, even the legitimacy, of Christianity is now openly debated, something unimaginable of a mere hundred years ago. In the Third Great Awakening people questioned the nature and identity of God but precious few outside of academia seriously questioned His existence and/or relevance. Sadly today most people in the West are Agnostic. Although most are loath to acknowledge it, their actions and world views make it clear. Confronted by the religious zeal of observant Muslims most Westerners, Jews and Christians alike, stand empty handed and speechless.

Archeological and textual discoveries, the secular sciences, Humanistic and New Age philosophies and so on are now inundating the West in soul destroying doubt and offering nothing meaningful in exchange. Many serious scholars are beginning to question whether Y'shua/Jesus ever actually even existed! The powers-that-be, including the media, clearly intend to de-seat the socially passe' Christian world view from the public table. If a character in a film is mentioned as being Christian you can be almost certain that he/she is the villain of the story. That was never the case before (it used to be 'the butler who did it'). Likewise if the Bible is cited in almost any discussion as being authoritative incredulity if not ridicule is all but certain today. Traditional American religion is dying on the vine.

Due in part to the current philosophic and scientific suppositions of cultural relativism many people today are questioning the basic assumptions upon which traditional Western religions, especially Christianity, are based. They find the Christian exclusionary beliefs lacking in substance, yet continue to feel the need for spiritual insights and experiences. This innate human need is the impetus for the current spiritual hunger that is leading some into the Occult, some into Islam, innumerable into depression, and yet others into almost fanatical versions of Christian Fundamentalism(note 11) . People crave Truth as they desire food and water! It has always been this way, but now they are looking for it in different places. Turning against Torah they are more and more often finding only the void of materialism and/or superstition.

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