We live in a culture which has embraced secular fundamentalism. It is an ideology which seeks not to embrace any transcendent deity but embraces the sole sovereignty of humankind, fulfilling the false promise, ‘you will be like God’ (Genesis 3:5) by building its new tower of Babel (Genesis 11). It disdains religious people, engages in all forms of public ridicule, and “cancels” biblical Christianity.
The Urban Dictionary defines secular fundamentalism as “the adherence to anti-religious ideology that militantly ridicules, mocks, scorns and satirizes the idea of the existence of a deity or deities and or religion, indifferent of feelings of bigotry intolerance hatred and persecution that adherents feel as a result. That does not respect religion or support policies supporting the freedom of it. Calls for its abolition or severe restriction & for religion to removed from public life.”
In order to achieve these goals, it makes temporary coalitions with incongruous allies. Thus, we see riots on college campuses where secular fundamentalists march side-by-side with Islamic fundamentalists. The embracing of terror by both is religious in nature, for make no mistake secular fundamentalism is itself a religion. Man becomes the god that is worshiped—not all humanity, but those who agree with their radical ideology and political agenda. Hate has replaced love as their religious motivation.
Secular fundamentalism embraces power in the same way as Islamic fundamentalism. The exercise of power to achieve their goals is sacramental action. The weapons employed are terror, censorship, activist magistrates, and —where it may be achieved— the tyranny of a majority. Thus, the constitutional protections of a liberal society are eschewed—freedom of speech and religion are to be rejected. Riots replace dialogue. Secularists who may personally reject hate and violence are made complicit if they maintain their silence.
This is that struggle that the Church faces in every age. For we are engaged in spiritual warfare. The Church’s faithful response is to invite the world to embrace the Lord and be transformed by grace. We are called to proclaim love in word and deed to a broken world in rebellion against God and invite them to be reconciled.
“Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens. For this reason take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having prepared everything, to take your stand. Stand, therefore, with truth like a belt around your waist, righteousness like armor on your chest, and your feet sandaled with readiness for the gospel of peace. In every situation take up the shield of faith with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit—which is the word of God.” (Ephesians 6:12–17, CSB)