Thursday, May 14, 2015

Christianity is a Humanism

When Christ ascended into heaven, taking his seat at the right hand of the Father on high, he put into effect the eternal decree of God.  Jesus Christ was always the person by whom and for whom all things existed.  Now that is revealed in his exaltation.

Seeing Christ on his throne, every philosophical and programmatic humanism appears as nothing more than a lame parody.  Every attempt to make humanity the measure of all things, to begin with human experience, to place humanity at the centre of the epistemic or ontological universe looks foolish.  In truth, humanism as conceived by humanity is doomed to failure, because there is no vacancy for humanity to fill.  The centre and pinnacle of the universe is already occupied - by humanity!  Not humanity in the abstract, to be sure, but this particular human being, Jesus of Nazareth.  Nevertheless, humanity.

The implications are far-reaching and profound.  One that I would stress, because it seems to me it is often missed, is that humanity matters, and all things truly human matter.  A question which I have is this: in the midst of a culture given over to materialism and scientism, might it not be the task of Christians to pick up the genuine concerns of humanism?  In the light of the exaltation of humanity in Christ, can we ever take humanity too seriously?

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