Essay on The Failings of Fundamentalism

958 Words4 Pages
Fundamentalism is an espresso shot of Christianity—strong, bitter, and undiluted.

Fundamentalists believe the Bible should be interpreted as literal fact, not metaphorically.

To them, it is God’s direct word to humanity and the ultimate earthly authority. And so

fundamentalists follow the Bible with unwavering certainty, as if it were God himself, and

press their interpretation of the book upon society. But the certainty at fundamentalism’s core is

unwarranted, leading them to wrongfully ignore their oppositions’ own valid opinions and the

potential gains that come with them.

In the eyes of Christian fundamentalists, their actions are protecting God’s will;

they are upholding the laws of the Supreme Being, thus keeping
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Their beliefs

demand an uncompromising attitude; for in their minds, their beliefs are not just their beliefs, but

unquestionable truths ordained by God.

While the fundamentalists’ reasoning is valid, their assumptions are dubious, resulting in

an absolutist mindset that unduly rejects non-Biblical viewpoints. Indeed, if the Bible is inerrant,

and if the Bible is God’s supreme will, then the fundamentalists’ zeal is justifiable and the world

ought to listen to them. However, fundamentalists downplay the almighty “if.” By their own

admission, their certainty in the Bible and in God is built on “faith,” which the Bible defines

as “confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” (NIV Heb. 11.1).

Neither hope nor assurance are quantifiable pieces of evidence; they are feelings, subjective by

definition. Therefore, fundamentalists may feel they are right, but they cannot know whether

they are right by standards of objective reasoning. Even if fundamentalist doctrine is entirely

correct, it has no more privilege to absolute certainty than any other set of opinions. As such,

fundamentalists must understand that their legislative efforts to defend God’s will from ungodly

“assaults” (Marsden) will be seen by others as acts of condemnation, homophobia, and misogyny

(Riascos). They must consider others’ opposite and equally
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