Last Monday evening I attended a public lecture given by Tom Wright (also known as R.T. Wright), the ex Bishop of Durham and a lecturer at St Andrews University and as you might expect a very clever and able man. His lecture was on “How do we speak about God in a confused world?” which basically translated to the role of the Christian faith in public discourse. His lecture was almost brilliant. But the almost left me feeling troubled.
The brilliance was in his insight into modern culture and it's failings; the divinity of progress now that any conception of god has been removed, the failure of science-ism (hot air, resting on thin air, leaving us in mid air, as he wonderfully said) and the place of Christianity in Western society. His diagnoses was accurate but in describing Christianity as the solution he worried me.
The almost was in what he did not say. This makes it a subtle error but it has been my observation that often the most tricky errors are found in what is not said rather than what is. Before I get to the exact error of omission that was concerning I think it is necessary to say that Tom Wright is hardly the only one doing this. Indeed, he acts a figurehead for a broader church wide movement of not preaching the gospel as well as it should be preached. From my own experience I find it most common in evangelical charismatic circles but it is creeping into conservative circles too.