Review of Carson's Gagging of God

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In The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism, author D. A. Carson describes three categories of pluralism: empirical, cherished, and philosophical or hermeneutical.[i] The first deals with diversity in America and the multiplicity of beliefs. The second, cherished pluralism, describes the approval of diversity as an unquestioned virtue. Finally, philosophical pluralism, under which religious pluralism falls, posits that no religion has the right to pronounce itself true and right. In other words, no religion can advance “truth claims” that are superior to any other. Carson states that postmodernism is the outlook that birthed philosophical pluralism.[ii] While I agree that pluralism is an important subject that benefits from the kind of attention given to it in the book, I believe the length of the book and the comprehensive nature of the material presented can make it difficult to follow at times. Furthermore, on several occasions the author seemed to move to the wider margins of the topic. However, as the implications of pluralism are pertinent and its integration with postmodernism significant, the information was extremely beneficial. The Christian must recognize empirical pluralism, tolerate cherished pluralism, but reject philosophical pluralism. We must recognize the diversity that exists in modern culture as Christians have throughout history. While pluralism poses new challenges in the current day, Christians have always had to stand up for the truth of Christian believe against other religions. Scripture was both inspired and written in a pluralistic context. However, even in the Old Testament God insisted that his people turn from the worship of other gods and other religions. For example, in Joshua 24:15, Joshua gave the children of Israel a choice to either serve God or Baal. The prophet Elijah would later give Israel the same choice in 1 Kings 18:21. Throughout history, God’s people have been reminded to be faithful to God as...
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