Monday, October 6, 2014

Carson, 2012. Chapter 8, “Ways Ahead: Ten Words”

Chapter 8, “Ways Ahead: Ten Words” (Loc. 1772)

In this chapter Carson makes ten suggestions. While some are pointed most directly at Christians there is hopefully broad applicability.

“1 Expose the New Tolerance’s Moral and Epistemological Bankruptcy” (Loc. 1775). The new tolerance allows for “mutually exclusive claims to truth.” This simply cannot work.

“2 Preserve a Place for Truth” (Loc. 1799). Truth claims are to be discussed and debated in a thoughtful and caring manner.

“3 Expose the New Tolerance’s Condescending Arrogance” (Loc. 1824).

“4 Insist That the New Tolerance Is Not ‘Progress’” (Loc. 1832). Carson observes that advances in the 20th century have been accompanied by many troubling situations.

“5 Distinguish between Empirical Diversity and the Inherent Goodness of All Diversity” (Loc. 1847).

“6 Challenge Secularism’s Ostensible Neutrality and Superiority” (Loc. 1865).

“7 Practice and Encourage Civility” (Loc. 1895).

“8 Evangelize” (Loc. 1899). This is a reminder that we stand up for truth claims. Christians who believe the Gospel show it to be important.

“9 Be Prepared to Suffer” (Loc. 1924).

“10 Delight in and Trust God” (Loc. 1940).

Here we reach the end of Carson’s book. It is a book of ideas and observations, not necessarily full of specific fixes for problems. Some may not see that there is any problem with altering the language and meaning of “tolerance.” Some may think Carson is barking up a tree that doesn’t exist. Regardless, he has made some very apt observations. Tolerance which is not tolerant is something other than tolerance. This is certainly an idea which is worthy of further study.

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