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WHAT IS NEW AGE HUMANISM?

Although it is possible that Christians have been seduced by New Age concepts, yet it is wrong to identify someone as a New Age humanist simply because he or she uses terminology stolen by New Age advocates. After all, it's equally possible that some Christians who believe in a "kingdom theology" are not being seduced because they may fully understand that New Age humanism is man-centered, while "kingdom theology" is Christ-centered in the most biblical sense. They also know, as we hope to demonstrate, that New Age humanism is a counterfeit of the kingdom of God.

What, then, would someone have to believe in order to be labeled a New Ager? We've chosen four foundational presuppositions of New Age philosophy, but there are many more New Age concepts that we will not critique. 1

One New Age principle that seems to get tremendous attention in this debate is an optimistic view of our earthly future. Since this is a crucial topic for Dave Hunt, a number of our later chapters are devoted exclusively to the subject. Optimism is not, however, a prerequisite for someone to be a New Ager, although it is a prominent strain in the movement,2 There are plenty of pessimists who are part of New Age humanism. Jeremy Rifkin is

1. See Douglas Groothuis, Unmasking the New Age (Downers Grove, IL: Inter-Varsity Press, 1985), pp. 13-36 for a detailed description of New Age presupposi-ions.

2. "This reality, this 'New Consciousness; is hoping to bring about a 'New Age' of hope and human fulfillment."Ibid., p. 16.

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