by Tim Chaffey
Young Christian students are often confronted by a teacher or professor who will make the claim that there are no absolutes. This statement is usually made in an effort to attack Christianity and its dependence upon absolute truth. Jesus stated unambiguously that He was the ONLY way to Heaven (John 14: 6). If there are no absolutes then Jesus was mistaken and Christianity crumbles. However, if Jesus was telling the truth then this is an issue that every single person must deal with.
George Barna recently reported that only 9% of self-proclaimed "born again" Christian teens believe in moral absolutes. This shocking statistic reveals an alarming trend in the church. Many Christians are no longer being taught to view the Bible as authoritative and instead we are told to view it as one of many guides to Heaven. They fail to realize that the One they call Savior made numerous absolute truth claims.
"There are no absolutes!" proclaims the professor. This statement is self-contradictory because the statement itself claims to be an absolute. If not, then it need not be believed and we can believe in absolutes. If we are to hold this view, then we are clinging to one absolute. But there is another problem. If we allow that this one statement ("there are no absolutes") is an absolute then we are actually making a second absolute claim [i.e. "there is one absolute"]. Of course, this leads to an endless increase in your number of absolutes for once you admit there are two absolutes, you actually have a third (“There are two absolutes”) and so on.
In the same way, one cannot say “everything is relative” without contradicting himself/herself. If everything is relative, then the statement “everything is relative” is also relative and therefore not binding on anyone. If that statement is absolute, then it self-destructs because it makes a truth claim that is in direct contradiction to what it is claiming. Isn’t it fun how God set things up this way? I love it!
One might accept some absolutes but deny there are any moral absolutes. On what basis does this person determine if something is right or wrong? Good or bad? It is impossible to do this without the existence of an absolute standard no matter how offensive this is to our “free-thinking” society.It is ludicrous to dismiss the existence of God and the authority of His Word on this arrogant and self-defeating claim. Christians need not fear this claim. Every single idea that contradicts the Word of God will ultimately defeat itself.
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