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Jesus after Modernity:

A Twenty-First-Century Critique of Our Modern Concept of Truth and the Truth of the Gospel

By James P. Danaher

Jesus after Modernity

Jesus after Modernity:

A Twenty-First-Century Critique of Our Modern Concept of Truth and the Truth of the Gospel

By James P. Danaher

A study of how replacing Enlightenment concepts of objectivity with a more ambiguous postmodern understanding allows speech about the truth of the Gospel.

Trade Information: JPOD
Available as: Paperback, PDF

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Print Paperback

ISBN: 9780227680018

Specifications: 229x153mm (9x6in), 156pp

Published: May 2012


PDF eBook

ISBN: 9780227900475

Specifications: 149pp

Published: May 2012

During the Age of the Enlightenment, developments in mass printing allowed for the dissemination of new scientific knowledge, enriching the capacity to learn. Instead of extracting truth from authoritative sources such as the Gospel, importance was now placed on discovery through observation, aiming to understand the universe. This new science introduced a notion of truth as certain, objective and precise, incompatible with the medieval concept of spiritual reality and the ambiguity of the teachings of Jesus.

However, a twenty-first century understanding of the human condition has shown that this modernist idea of objectivity is no longer credible, and that there are limits of human capacity to discover absolute truth. This realisation leaves us free to rethink our notion of truth in a way that is compatible with the things that Jesus said and did, and equally compatible with what we now know to be our access to truth given the limits of our human condition.

Jesus after Modernity seeks to construct a model of truth compatible with the nature of humanity and the spirituality of the teachings and actions of Jesus. Addressing the need for a realistic notion of truth, Danaher aims to bring insight into the integrity of Jesus's message within a twenty-first century context, which celebrates ambiguity and allows for both logic and contradiction.


1. Introduction
2. Objectivity
3. A Phenomenal Understanding
4. The Phenomenal Nature of Spiritual Experience
5. The Quest for Certainty
6. A Mechanical Universe
7. The Nature of the Gospel Journey
8. Modern Reason
9. The Other Logic
10. Reasoning about God
11. The Gospel after Modernity
12. Understanding Our God Experiences


James P. Danaher is Professor of Philosophy and Head of the Philosophy Department at Nyack College. He is the author of Eyes that See, Ears that Hear: Perceiving Jesus in a Postmodern Context (2006), and Postmodern Christianity and the Reconstruction of the Christian Mind (2001).

We in religion concentrate so much on what we know for certain, but there has always been too little self critique about 'How do we know what we think we know?' This clear and well-written book is both very honest and very helpful on the subject. No one will lose their faith here – perhaps many will find it for the first time! I am happy someone has written this much-needed book, and I hope it is used in classrooms, by many seekers, and in the churches. Richard Rohr OFM, Center for Action and Contemplation
... there are many Christians for whom this is just the book to start them on a journey away from simplistic biblical fundamentalisms and towards a humbler, more realistic understanding of how we can relate to Jesus. Jonathan Clatworthy, in Modern Believing, Vol 53, Issue 1
... a helpful introduction to postmodern engagement of Scripture and Christian life. Nicholas Daniels, Regent University, in Theological Book Review , Vol 25, No 1

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