Stephen Dempster on Postmodernism

“The error of modernism is ‘objectivism’, that is, the idea that individual subjects can attain the entire, value-free, truth when examining an object — they can see it as it really is; while the error of postmodernism is ‘subjectivism’, the idea that, because observers are never value-free or objective, they see the object according to their subjective perspective — they see it not as it is but as they are (and therefore never really see it). A truly Judeo-Christian epistemology will navigate between these extremes of radical objectivism and radical subjectivism. Human beings can know truth because it is revealed, but it is always accommodated to their understanding and always filtered through their own particular context. Factors of culture, place, time, society, education, experience and the effects of sin on the mind colour the truth. Paul remarks in his first letter to the Corinthian church that Christian believers see through a glass darkly in the present life. His observation illustrates the truths of both modernism and postmodernism held in tension, while avoiding their errors: we see (modernism) through a glass darkly (postmodernism).”

— Stephen G. Dempster, Dominion and Dynasty: A theology of the Hebrew Bible, chapter 1

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1 Comment

July 24, 2007 · 8:55 am

One response to “Stephen Dempster on Postmodernism

  1. David

    “A truly Judeo-Christian epistemology will navigate between these extremes of radical objectivism and radical subjectivism. Human beings can know truth because it is revealed, but it is always accommodated to their understanding and always filtered through their own particular context.”

    Is the above “truth” an unvarnished one, or filtered by the poster’s own particular context?

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