The philosophy of relativism is pervasive in our nation today. Relativism is a philosophical position that all points of view are equally valid and that “all truth is relative to the individual.” Let’s break this definition down further. This really means that all moral positions, all religious systems, all art forms, all political movements, etc., are truths that are relative to the individual. Under the world’s definition of relativism, entire groups of “perspectives” or beliefs are categorized. This means that all morals are relative to the group within which they were constructed, and ethics (right and wrong) are dependent upon the situation. It is relativism that brings you to the position today that men can bear children!
With the growing rejection of God and Christianity in our nation, absolute truth, God’s Truth is being abandoned. How do we know? Just look at our deteriorating judicial systems incapable of administering punishment for crimes. Try our entertainment industry and media which are aggressively pursuing the education of our society on immoral and indecent behavior. What was once accepted as wrong is tempered with the teaching of “Social Tolerance.” What was once a sin is now celebrated on social media and in our government educational systems. Any pushback is attacked as bigotry! You can lose your job, lose your reputation, or fail a course in school when you do not adhere to the new “woke” standards of relativism in society. We cannot flourish or even survive as a nation in an environment where everyone does what is right in their own eyes. Our political systems and our economic systems cannot operate when lying and cheating are okay under the “end justifies the means” morality. Without a common foundation of Truth and absolutes, our nation will become weak, descend into chaos, and fail. Some might say we are there now!
(Isaiah 5:21)1NIV New International Version Translations – “Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight.”
(Proverbs 26:12) – “Do you see a person wise in their own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for them.”
If truth were to become relative, there would be no way of measuring what is real and what isn’t. Our nation could no longer turn to laws to govern society. We could no longer use science to study our world. Common discourse, the kind that the First Amendment of our Constitution was created to assure, would no longer function. How common ground is found would be destroyed. The argument for relativism is that no one has the same background of experiences and opinions. Each one of us approaches a given subject from a unique perspective that filters our viewpoint, leading to differing conclusions. However, the stronger argument against relativism is based on the view that there are absolutes. Common sense tells us so! The premise that all truth is relative and there is no objective truth is false! We know that absolute truth exists. You may not like that it exists, and you may live your life in a way that ignores its existence. However, that does not disprove its existence.
(Romans 1:18-25) – “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.”
If truth was to ever become relative, then so would the concepts of good and evil, right and wrong, and guilt and innocence. Even the worst atrocities could be justified simply by someone’s opinion. We can see the roots of that logic right now in the world around us. Relativism denies the concept that a moral reality exists. It is nothing more than “moral cowardice” masquerading as an “everybody wins, everybody gets an ‘A’, everybody gets a trophy” solution.
The alternative to moral relativism is a doctrine that emphasizes the existence of singular moral truths and values. Our very creation presumes the existence of moral truths independent of our own beliefs. The issue society faces is in establishing its source for moral truths. Unless you deny the fact that we are benefactors of a Created World, the logical and common-sense approach would be to look to the Creator for His Truths. Not some simple set of truths with a copyright date of a few hundred years ago. No, a copyright date that marks the beginning of our human story. God did not place His people here to wander in pain and anguish for no purpose. He provided a set of Truths to exist by. They have been unchanging since our creation. For a Truth to be effective, it must be simple and understood. The test of God’s Truth is that it is not relative to anything but God!
(Psalm 119:160) – “All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal.”
Simply translated, God’s Truth is “My way or the highway.”
- What is the basis for what you personally hold to be self-evident and truthful?
- Ideas to Explore: Education, Internet, News Media, Social Media, Church, Family, God’s Word, Friends?
- What do you do with information to confirm it is not just someone’s opinion but based on facts?
- Ideas to Explore: Do you check? Do you avoid those sources with a track record of being wrong? Do you search for what is true?
- If nothing is wrong and nothing is right, can society exist?
- Ideas to Explore: What does history tell us about believing lies? If someone lies about peace, do you have peace? Can we have peace without truth? Do you have anything without truth?
- What are the weaknesses of humanity that allow them to accept relativism?
- Ideas to Explore: Focus on self, Idolatry or the worship of things, ignorance? Please add your thoughts.
- 1NIV New International Version Translations