The Demonic Power of Critical Theory and Cancel Culture

The Demonic Power of Critical Theory and Cancel Culture

Romans 8:1 – There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.  

Revelation 12:10–11 – …the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony…

Condemnation is what happens when an authority over us judges us as guilty and renders a punishment for us. For example, when a judge tries a case and pronounces someone guilty before sentencing them to prison, condemnation has occurred. Likewise, when God judges an unrepentant sinner for their sin and sentences them to the eternal prison of hell, condemnation has occurred.

Because Satan counterfeits everything God creates, it is not surprising that he also counterfeits justice. Today this very spirit has overtaken essentially every discipline in higher education and every platform on the internet.

Traditional theory is the study of how to build something. Anyone who has ever tried to build something of quality knows how hard this task is. Traditional theory builds things like Christian theology, heterosexual marriage, male and female sex and gender roles, families, and Christianity.

Critical theory is the study of how to break something like gender, sexuality, marriage, justice, or Christianity. Anyone who has ever tried to break something knows how easy this is. Why? Because criticizing the imperfect work of another fallen sinner is a lot easier than actually doing the hard work of building something better. In the same way, the out-of-shape guy in the bleachers yelling at world-class athletes about their every error could himself never take the field and do a better job.

In economics, critical theory attacks wealth and success. In gender studies, critical theory attacks men and masculinity. In marriage studies, critical theory attacks traditional male-female heterosexual marriage. In sexuality studies, critical theory attacks sex, gender, and marriage. The list is endless, and hypocrisy is limitless.

The myth under critical theory is that we can make a utopian society like Heaven on earth without God. If we simply criticized and tore down everyone and everything we do not like, then we could rebuild in its place a more just and good society. The only problem is that everyone is a sinner and everything we build has faults, flaws, and failures because the fall extends to everything we think and everything we do. Those who do not believe the storyline of the Bible, which reveals that every human being is part of the problem and not the solution, are led astray by the old Dragon and the trick he’s been playing since he got angels to critique and condemn God in Heaven – that we can do better than anyone, even God.

When the Bible speaks of Satan as the Accuser (Revelation 12:10), it’s another way of saying he is the Critic who condemns people. The Critic loves nothing more than getting sinners on earth to take God’s seat, judge others condemn them, and then punish them to some sort of hellish fate. Like God, today’s technology knows everything and forgets nothing, which provides those who sit with the Critic in judgment endless opportunities to critique and condemn. Today, we call this the cancel culture and the reason it is so powerful is because, behind it all, is the Critic. Unlike God who forgives, there can be no forgiveness and only condemnation for those who have done wrong. They must be cancelled, never forgiven, banished to live in shame forever under the demonic spirit of condemnation with no hope of ever getting the kind of grace and new life that Jesus Christ alone provides. The only exception, of course, is if your deed was against God and not the Critic in which case you are applauded for thinking and doing what the real Judge will one day condemn you for. The unpardonable sin of critical theory and cancel culture is to critique critical theory and cancel the cancel culture – the very thing Jesus Christ will do once and for all once the real Judge returns to provide real justice and bring the real Heaven on earth.

To find the new, free Romans 6-11 digital study guide for individuals and small groups, hear Pastor Mark’s entire sermon series on Romans, or find a free mountain of Bible teaching visit realfaith.com or download the Real Faith app.

Mark Driscoll
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