God’s Resurrection, Secularism’s Burial

Jul. 10, 2009 By Jenna Bartlo

LA MIRADA, CALIF. --- Sociologists, historians, and economists have been diligently mining the mounting evidence for how and why religion, especially Christianity, is flourishing globally and succeeding in the U.S. in spite of secularist predictions.

“Reasons abound for how and why ‘God is back.’ But there appears to be an evident theme,” said J.P. Moreland, Biola University’s Distinguished Professor of Philosophy.

“Religion, and especially the Judeo-Christian worldview, stubbornly resists explanation by the worldview of naturalism and her elites, which empowers secularism. Consequently, genuine religious phenomena are helping to falsify secularism and the process of secularization.”

Moreland, a seasoned cultural observer, theologian and philosopher, expands upon his vast corpus of writing and research in a recent book about how naturalism fails to give us satisfying explanations concerning basic human facts.

The Recalcitrant Imago Dei: Human Persons and the Failure of Naturalism, just released by SCM Press (UK), is already being heralded by scholarly influencers worldwide. Among its benefits, it gets at the heart of the existential and moral “crisis” that naturalism has especially spawned in the West.

“Could it be that the global explosion of Christianity is due in significant part to the fact that growing numbers of populations and people groups just don’t naturally live as though secularism is true?” muses Moreland.

If secularists have a recurring nightmare, Moreland considers, “it might very well be a nightmare of the sort where millions upon millions of people worldwide no longer find secularism to be in their interest, or at least that is how they seem to live.”

Indeed, Moreland’s well-researched book shows why there are compelling reasons to think that secularism is not in our interest. For example, “with an overreliance on the hard sciences, secularism reduces us to our brains, our wills to nerve reactions, our value to the dictates of the herd. In the process, we lose what is so special to us—our consciousness, freedom, rationality, self and value.”

The Recalcitrant Imago Dei is part of a growing trend of recent scholarship, where not only secularism and naturalism are being falsified, but in Western academic circles, especially in philosophy, there is a simultaneous renaissance happening with the Christian knowledge tradition.

The book is available for purchase at Amazon.com.

To learn more about Professor Moreland’s latest book, read the interview with him at the blog of the Evangelical Philosophical Society.


Biola University is a private Christian university located in Southern California on the border of Los Angeles and Orange counties in the city of La Mirada. For over 100 years, Biola has remained committed to its biblical foundation, integrating biblical principles with every academic program. U.S. News & World Report recognizes Biola as a “National University,” which is considered the “major leagues” of higher education. In addition to its focus on intentional spiritual development and career preparation, Biola offers a unique academic environment where all faculty, staff and students are professing Christians. With over 145 academic programs in seven schools, Biola offers degrees ranging from B.A. to Ph.D. For more information, visit www.biola.edu or call (562) 777 – 4061.

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