Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Westminster Wednesday: Where Have the Great Men Gone?

Scientific advancement and the industrial revolution have produced a new criterion for judging man as successful. A man is made when he has contributed significantly to industry, and a man who has thus contributed is rewarded handsomely in financial terms. Hence, the impetus for higher education has really not been the desire to know more about God, His creation, and the cultivation of the latter for the glory of the former, but the amassment of wealth. This phenomenon has produced dullards on a wholesale level.

J. Gresham Machen rightly observes:

"Scientific investigation, as has already been observed, has certainly accomplished much; it has in many respects produced a new world. But there is another aspect of the picture which should not be ignored. The modern world represents in some respects an enormous improvement over the world in which our ancestors lived; but in other respects it exhibits a lamentable decline. The improvement appears in the physical conditions of life, but in the spiritual realm there is a corresponding loss. The loss is clearest, perhaps, in the realm of art. Despite the mighty revolution which has been produced in the external conditions of life, no great poet is now living to celebrate the change; humanity has suddenly become dumb. Gone, too, are the great painters and the great musicians and the great sculptors. The art that still subsists is largely imitative, and where it is not imitative it is usually bizarre. Even the appreciation of the glories of the past is gradually being lost, under the influence of a utilitarian education that concerns itself only with the production of physical well-being." (Christianity and Liberalism, Introduction)

The solution? A Christianity that is integrally connected with the past.


  1. Yup! I agree, people these days depend too much on machines, they seldom appreciate good old manual labor and the beauty it creates. And the degrading upgrade from wonderful paintings to stupid photoshop tricks, from Great sculptures to a plastic mold and the most threatening from artistic people to dumb imitators.


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