Why is Intellectual and Cultural Growth Really a Christian Thing?

Intellectual and Cultural Growth

Having evaluated Christianity for its internal consistency and existential viability, let us turn to evaluate its intellectual and cultural fecundity.  In other words, does it produce an abundance of growth and help humanity to flourish intellectually and culturally.  Indeed, it has been the Christian faith that led the way in scientific discovery; because, Christians believe that God is a God who reveals Himself to humanity through nature, rigorous study, and through personal enlightenment. Princeton, Yale and Harvard were originally founded as Christian Universities; although, their founders would be appalled from how they have changed.  “While some have pitted faith against reason, the Bible does not endorse blind leaps of faith in the dark but rather speaks of the knowledge of God gained through various rational means. Instead of a leap of faith, it commends a well-informed and volitional step of faith”[1]

A careful review of history reveals that the Christians led the way in scientific and industrial exploration. Although, there may have been a time period in which the Catholic Church tried to restrict the knowledge as a means of “power control”; it was Christians such as Galileo “who discerned no discord between the Bible and natural science.”[2]  Instead of Christians hiding under a cloak of ignorance, we are taught to study and defend the faith intellectually.  Christ, himself; through the knowledge of Old Testament Scripture stood firm against Satan when tempted.  Additionally, His discourse with the Pharisees and Sadducee of His day were carried out intellectually.  He set the example for all of us to follow.

Flourishing Cultural Growth

True Christians have stood as the beacon of light for charity throughout the world.  The Bible teaches that we are to care for the poor, the widows, and the sick.  Indeed, the Humanist Manifesto I states, “this age does owe a vast debt to the traditional religions”.

However, they then try to denounce faith as though it were evil.

The secularists try to point to atrocities during the middle ages and tragedies proclaimed in the name of Christ.  However, when they do so they are pointing out terrors performed by sinful men; who proclaimed the name of Christ, not the message of Christianity itself.  However, Christ Himself, spoke of these men in Matthew 7:22-24. Terrible things over the ages of time have been done in the “name of Christianity”; however, that is not True Christianity.  Unfortunately, broken, sin filled mankind professing to be Christians often provide the greatest reasons for others to not believe.  Yet, if we look at our own country; the Christians fought to free the people from England, fought to free the slaves, fought for women’s rights, and provide many relief efforts around the world.

They also try to say that secular humanism has led to a greater good.  However, have they forgotten the history of the twentieth century?  “Just who has imposed on the suffering human race poison gas, barbed wire, high explosives, experiments in eugenics, the formula for Zyklon B, heavy artillery, pseudo-scientific justifications for mass murder, cluster bombs, attack submarines, napalm, intercontinental ballistic missiles, military space platforms, and nuclear weapons?  If memory serves, it was not the Vatican.”[3]


The secularists love to use words as racism or bigotry to denounce Christians; because, they know those words are like a knife stabbing into our hearts.  The reason those words cause us such pain, is they do not reflect the truth of the gospel message in any way, shape or form.  The Bible teaches quite the opposite; it teaches us to love all mankind as being created by God.  We are to preach the gospel to all nations (Matthew 28:19-20).  Or as Paul pointed out God “hath made of one blood all nations” (Acts 17:26).

Yet, it is the secular humanists who teach the evolutionary principles of “survival of the fittest.”  It was this very ideology that caused Hitler to decide it was a good idea to annihilate an entire group of people.  Indeed, the very idea of evolution (a theory never proven in the laboratories of science or archeology); which, believes that some human beings have evolved to be superior over others.  Their own push toward aborting fetuses that are not perfect or euthanasia of those who do not give back to society; shows that these ideologies of racism are theirs, not the Christians.  Furthermore, they support the idea of allowing illegal immigration; so that we might have a new form of slavery in order to supply our ever-growing need of food, cheaply or to gain political power through keeping the oppressed, oppressed in need of their “charity.”


Why, given the truth of history and the gospel message, have we Christians cowed to the criticisms launched as us by the secularists?  Ah, that is easy.  We recognize that we are flawed; because, we understand that it is God’s grace which saved us.  Looking deep within our own hearts we see the blemishes there; but, God never meant for us to become silenced by our own weaknesses.  Instead, that is part of the good news which should make us bold in proclaiming the gospel to the world.

We are all broken and in need of a Savior.  For that reason, we must study, grow, pray and rest upon the power of the Holy Spirit us to guide us.  Go forth boldly then to be the light and salt of the world, knowing that we hold the key to wisdom in Jesus Christ.  We can make a difference in the world; by spreading the goodness of God.  Yet, we do it with humility; knowing that without Him, we can do nothing. (I Corinthians 4:4, 8:2, 9:16).  However, we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. (Philippians 4:13).


If you don’t know Jesus Christ as your Savior: I urge you to go to my page titled How to Be Saved by clicking on this link. Because there is nothing more important than this, I urge you to seek Him today.


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©Effie Darlene Barba, 2017
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Credits and Footnotes


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[1] Groothius, Apologetics, 96

[2] Groothius, Apologetics, 100

[3] David Berlinski, The Devil’s Delusion, (New York: Basic Books, 2009), 21