Secular Humanist – Naturalism.
The teaching of this group of seeming intellectuals is “There is no supernatural. God, Satan, heaven, hell, mind, spirit, soul, angels, demons, etc. are all fantasy.” All things are natural. Even thoughts are simply “chemical firings of synapses in the brain”.
Secular humanism is a philosophy or life stance that embraces human reason, secular ethics, and philosophical naturalism while specifically rejecting religious dogma, supernaturalism, and superstition as the basis of morality and decision making.
Marxism philosophy is Dialectical Materialism. It, like naturalism, also denies the supernatural.
However, the emphasis is on struggle. Survival of the fittest and Competition are their norms. Natural selection is their philosophy.
Darwinism applied to social science. This is secular philosophy.
What then is Christian philosophy?
Christian philosophy is “in Him we live, and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). It is that Jesus is the Word of God. John 1:1-4 teaches the mind before matter, design before creation, and life from life. Jesus is eternal, the creator of all things, and the source of all truth.
Why did Paul bring in Christian Philosophy here?
Paul had to confront two opposing philosophies as he witnessed in Athens, those of the Epicureans and the Stoics.
We today associate the word Epicurean with the pursuit of pleasure and the love of “fine living,” especially fine food. But the Epicurean philosophy involved much more than that. In one sense, the founder Epicurus was an “existentialist” in that he sought truth by means of personal experience and not through reasoning. The Epicureans were materialists and atheists, and their goal in life was pleasure.
- To some, “pleasure” meant that which was grossly physical;
- To others, it meant a life of refined serenity, free from pain and anxiety.
- The true Epicurean avoided extremes and sought to enjoy life by keeping things in balance, but pleasure was still his number one goal.
The Stoics rejected the idolatry of pagan worship and taught that there was one “World God.” They were pantheists,(the belief that everything is god, so be careful how you handle things so that you will not hurt god) and their emphasis was on personal discipline and self-control. Pleasure was not good and pain was not evil. The most important thing in life was to follow one’s reason and be self-sufficient, unmoved by inner feelings or outward circumstances.
Of course, such a philosophy only fanned the flames of pride and taught men that they did not need the help of God.
It is interesting to note here that the first two leaders of the Stoic school committed suicide.
Our modern prosperity preachers buy into the ideologies and philosophies of Epicureanism and Stoicism.
- Pleasure is the goal of the Epicureans.
- One’s reason and self-sufficiency are the ideologies of the stoics.
- These philosophies and ideologies are the bedrock of modern prosperity theology.
We must run away from such philosophies and ideologies because in them God is relegated.
By Daniel Sopuru