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Scientism and Secularism Review by Laurie Gauger

Learning to Respond to a Dangerous Ideology
J.P. Moreland

I am going to preface this review by saying that I wasn't terribly excited by the title, Scientism and Secularism. Given the choice, I will select a fiction piece such as a biography or historical title. The title had me picturing a group of serious, old fuddy duddies, intently discussing the religious versus the secular. My initial perception was I was certain I would need to read this while fresh so as not to risk dozing off. I was wrong. Author J.P. Moreland, in this book, has written an intelligent, engaging book that will hopefully, arrest the attention of Christians, and encourage them to be, "the perfume of Christ." 

Moreland recounts his childhood, which included an intense love for all things related to science. His conversion to Christianity changed his course for a while, as he pursued Biblical studies and philosophy. As he progressed through his education, he found the subject of scientism often come up. Unlike actual science, the idea of scientism insists that it is the intellectual ideas of science that dictate our world, and that theology, or anything Biblical really, comes from emotions and/or blind faith.

The premise for this book then, is to equip us, parents, leaders, and so on, to teach our children how to respond to the world's ideology, and be an effective witness for the Lord. He, Moreland, points out that as believers, our initial reaction to the world can be to kick into overdrive, and drown the world in our point of view. He says that rather than come at them in that manner that we should be somewhat of a perfume atomizer, sprinkling the world with grace. It creates quite the word picture.

Offering many references from Scripture, he explains how the theory of Scientism has negatively impacted the church, leading to more hostility towards Christianity in general. He also describes ways in which it has made its way into Christian homes, where Biblical truth has been watered down, leading to many young people leaving the Church.

Fortunately we do not have to settle for this path. There are ways that believers can approach the subject, and gird up our children in the faith. After explaining in depth the impacts of a Scientism worldview, and the flaws in their perspective, he begins to detail how we can shine the truth into the areas that are false. He provides plenty of models and tables to illustrate his points. 

This is a softcover book with two hundred-twenty-two pages, including a glossary. I was pleased to find this book, that was so obviously intelligently written, also a compelling read. My husband is the next in line to read it, and I'm confident that he will find it just as fascinating. This is a read for adults, and college students. This is a valuable resource to have in your library.

-Product review by Laurie Gauger, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, December 2018