Mind Matters

Darren Marks's cover essay ["The Mind Under Grace," March] deserves to be carefully read and absorbed. As doctrine forms us into fruitful disciples, we are better able to pass through stormy waters, even when God appears to have forsaken us. Those whose faith is propped up by feelings will likely lose that faith when life isn't so rosy.

After giving his essay some thought, I believe Marks has the correct treatment but ultimately the wrong diagnosis. The problem with postmoderns is not that we seek a personal, subjective experience over against a universal theology. Rather, we seek a corrupted universal theology to use to justify our subjective hopes and desires. This dynamic would explain why so many are drawn to the health and wealth gospel, even though its promises may be completely outside their personal experience.

In the end, though, the problem is still solved by a cross-centered theology that expounds the depravity of man and the necessity of grace in each believer's life. If this analysis is correct, perhaps the theologian of our age is not Schleiermacher but Pelagius.

I'm deeply grateful for J. I. Packer and Gary Parrett's direction on teaching doctrine ["The Lost Art of Catechesis," March]. Many churches confuse disciple-making with service, and thus fail to see that true discipleship is founded on learning and results in application. The decline of Western evangelicalism speaks to a failure to ground congregants in the historic faith, seeking "deeds over creeds" and overbroad attempts at ecumenism. Packer and Parrett's work gives hope that some churches will return to making disciples as Jesus commanded.

As a faithful Christianity Today reader for years, I have sometimes worried about the decision to ...

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