“Chronological Snobbery”

  Todd Pruitt: I believe it was C.S. Lewis who wrote about “chronological snobbery”: the tendency to think that your time, your methods, your generation, etc are somehow worthy of greater esteem than that of the past. This has been tragically true within evangelicalism. The irony, of course, is that we are a people whose entire existence depends upon events 2,000 years ago and beyond. What is more, we have two millennia of church history from which to draw. Unfortunately, in our preaching, praise, and education we seem to prefer the cheap porridge of contemporary trends over the rich and thoughtful deposits of our forebears. The finest historians on the planet ought to be Christians. Our churches ought to be filled with historical referents. Not that our buildings would be museums and our gatherings exercises in nostalgia. A thousand times no! However it seems to me, to quote one of my co-laborers, “We are sowing the seeds of our own demise.” Read the

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When Tradition Turns Toxic

This is excellent from Kevin DeYoung: There’s a lot that can be said for tradition. Tradition helps us know what to expect, helps us know our roles. Tradition can mark special events like weddings, funerals, and holidays. Tradition is good because it is respectful of the wisdom of those who have gone before us. It connects us with the past. I’m a big fan of tradition. But Jesus wasn’t always. “Tradition is the living faith of the dead,” to quote Jaroslav Pelikan. “But traditionalism,” he went on to say, “is the dead faith of the living.” Tradition can be horribly abused. It is a wonderful servant and a terrible master. Some of the dumbest and most hurtful things we do in life are owing to unthinking allegiance to tradition. Tradition sometimes turns toxic. In Mark 7:1-13, Jesus rails against tradition. He cites two problems with the traditions of the Pharisees. Tradition turns toxic when (1) we enforce man-made traditions as God-made

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