Summary: MAIN IDEA: Contrary to current public opinion, there is such a thing as absolute truth, and it is found in the Bible. OBJECTIVES: 1. Listeners will be informed of the intellectual and moral bankruptcy of the post-modern notion of “tolerance” (moral r
Clarity or Confusion?
1. Moral relativism and absolute truth
January 24/25, 2004
MAIN IDEA: Contrary to current public opinion, there is such a thing as absolute truth, and it is found in the Bible.
1. Listeners will be informed of the intellectual and moral bankruptcy of the post-modern notion of “tolerance” (moral relativism).
2. Listeners will dedicate themselves to using scripture as their guide to absolute truth.
3. Listeners will learn how to deal with those who reject Biblical truth.
Last weekend visited mother in law and when time to return home a funny thing happened. Our car alarm started going off. …..
We had been warned to get rid of this, that it would cause us trouble, but it seemed like everything was fine. A couple hundred dollars later, everything is fine.
My point – just because you don’t see a problem right now doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
There is a problem with our society. And though it never quite gets the headlines, it is slowly eroding the foundations of our society. What is the hidden danger, the menace that is causing inestimable amounts of suffering and moral decay in our society – and even within the church?
Moral relativism: The prevailing philosophy of our day that teaches there is no absolute truth, and that all philosophies, all religions, all opinions, are EQUALLY VALID, with no way to distinguish one as being morally superior to others. It’s also known by the name “tolerance”. It’s the philosophy that is taught in our schools and in our media that there is nothing that is true everywhere, and that everything is true somewhere.
Why is moral relativism or “tolerance” so dangerous? Because it is an intellectually bankrupt, morally bankrupt, and completely anti-Christian philosophy which pulls the foundations of our society out from under us, leaving us a lot like Wile E Coyote when he has run off a cliff. Sooner or later, there are dire consequences.
When it comes to knowing what is true, we can either follow the world’s advice or follow God’s word. And the source we use for truth and instruction in our lives will either lead us to CLARITY or CONFUSION. Over the next few weeks we will be discussing some of the more controversial moral issues of our day, and it is my hope that as we think about them, we will be able to push back the curtain of moral CONFUSION, and discover the joy of living in the light of CLARITY regarding the moral issues we all face.
In this message I aim to help you with the following 3 objectives:
1. Think critically about the whole notion of moral relativism.
2. Commit to following the Bible as your sure source of moral absolutes.
3. Learn how to deal with those who reject Biblical truth.
Don’t think this is important? Consider the following statistics…
According to a survey done by Barna Research back in 2001
About 3/4 ’s of all adults in America rejected the notion that there are absolute moral truths. Most Americans believe that all truth is relative to the situation and the individuals involved. Similarly, at least 80% of our teens embrace the same position regarding moral truths. Not only did more than 4 out of 5 teenagers say there is no absolute moral truth, 4 out of 5 also claim that nobody can know for certain whether or not they actually know what truth is.
Only 6% of teens, and 9% of born-again teens believe in moral absolutes.
Clearly, the church is missing something – and the time is now to start speaking up about the problems inherent in moral relativism.
WHY IS MORAL RELATIVISM INTELLECTUALLY AND MORALLY BANKRUPT?
1. If there is no absolute truth in spiritual matters, we are forced to accept contradictory “truths”.
Jesus claimed He is the only truth and only way to God – that no one can come to the Father except through Him.
Islam claims that Christianity is false.
How can they both be true? They cannot be true for some, and not for others – they make claims of exclusivity. Jesus did not qualify His remarks by saying, “I am the way, the truth, and the life for Palestinian Jews and Western Europeans.” He claimed to be the only way for everybody.
Islam declares that Israel should be destroyed. Pacifism would reject that. Which is right? Why? Why should I listen to your religious philosophy if mine is just as valid, even if it means I have moral freedom, and maybe even a moral obligation to kill others in the name of my religion or philosophy?
You cannot have mutually exclusive viewpoints be true. One must be right and another wrong.
We must be willing to consider the option that though it may be difficult to discover the truth, this does not mean that truth does not exist.