“A world, and a church, which is hooked on novelty like some cultural equivalent of crack cocaine needs the cold, cynical eye of the historian to stand as a prophetic witness against it. And make no mistake, when it comes to my approach to trendy evangelical claims to epoch-making insights, beneath the cold, cynical exterior of this particular historian beats a heart of stone.”
-Carl Trueman, Minority Report (Scotland: Christian Focus, 2008), p. 26
12 thoughts on “Classic Trueman”
Can you interpret what Carl is saying in this quote? I am a bit dull in my understanding.
You bet, Paul. Carl is saying church history and church historians are important as the church moves forward in contemporary culture. Rather than marginalizing things like the Reformation, these historically significant events in history should inform us to how we faithfully accomplish and define our ecclesiology. It will protect the church from jumping at every new wave of innovation. And it brings Carl’s character out, too. Hope this helps. Tony
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I am confused by the quote too. The part that gets me is the last bit about having a heart of stone. He doesn’t mean that he doesn’t care, does he?
What he seems to be saying is that in a church age that gets hyped up over breakthroughs in technique, he’s not interested. In a climate like ours that dismisses the significance of church history how ironic that so many breakthroughs seem to be discovered. Trueman has a heart of stone towards these supposed breakthroughs. Make sense? T
I am glad I am not the only one confused. Thank you Charlie for commenting too.
I think the problem with a quote like this is the missing context before and after and the use of what I call “camouflage speech”. He is disquising what he truly means with phrases or soundbytes that are a bit confusing. This reminds me of Newsboys lyrics such as Take Me To Your Leader CD.
Its funny that you posted that qoute when you did…right after the photo of EB (at your sister’s baptism). Trueman just posted an article about “Linguistic Soul Patches” of which he is decidedly not a fan, linguisticly or otherwise. Do I spy one in that picture?
You are correct, Matt. Trueman is no fan of the soul patch. Gotta love him! T
I stumbled upon your excellent blog and have just listened to CJ Mahaney’s sermon on cross centered parenting. It is excellent. Thank you for posting it. I very much want a friend to listen to this message but he does not have internet access. Is there a site where I can download this so that it can be burnt to a cd for his consumption only?
Thanks again for your blog. Please feel free to email me if this is not approprite to be posted.
We must always be on guard against the idea of, if it is new it must be good. Thanks for the reminder.
I found this very funny. I think it may be a cultural thing. British people (like myself) love sarcasm, irony, juxtaposition and bathos, and often find that non British people find us infuriatingly difficult to understand.
I agree Ed! I must have a bit o Britain in me blood. T