The Absolute truth
Letís consider truth for a moment. If all truth were relative, where would our basis for legislation lie? There has to be, at the least, an agreed upon standard or legislation would have no foundation. And where does this truth that is the cornerstone for legislation reside? It resides in the common will of the majority. So, any truth that exists contrary to the common will stands at opposition to that mainstream truth.
While we might enjoy dreaming about relative truth, it holds no concrete stand in real life. We, in a society, have to have standards and rules, norms and guidelines. Without a standard, there is chaos. Without rules, there resides disorder. We, as humans, possess a strong desire for order. And regardless of our religion or background, we share basic standards of right and wrong that are seemingly ingrained in our makeup.
Regardless of the society, regardless of the country, a child molester is looked upon with disdain. There have been societies that have approved of child sacrifice and various other activities that we today would deem as barbaric, but these have been the exception and not the rule. We each experience a similarity for right and wrong. If a complete stranger came and killed a member of your family, without your prior consent, there would be very few men or women, past or present that would not have named that action as unjust. So, where does this unconscious standard come from?
However, when we consider relative truths, we also have to consider the abnormals. Did Jim Jones with his poisonous kool-aid have just as much right to his version of the truth as Gandhi did? What about the group that committed mass-suicide because they thought they were going to be on a spaceship on the tail end of the Halley-Bop comet? Was their truth just as reliable and did it have just as much right to co-exist equally among other truths? The majority would say no. The majority would say that their truth was abnormal.
We have standards and truths not to feel justified or to intentionally inhibit some; we have absolutes because we realize that all truths are not created equally. Relative reaches its first problem because there are truths that violate other truths. There are truths that blatantly contradict other truths. And how do we justify two contradicting truths? If one truth says that two plus two equals four and another truth says that two plus two equals five, how can we seriously validate those truths? They blatantly contradict one another. Therefore, either both are wrong or one is wrong. They cannot both be right. A shade of truth is still not the truth, regardless of how much it wants to be truth. If they are both right, then two plus two equals both four and five. Thus, no standard and therefore chaos is produced. And if chaos is king, then we are inconsequential.
I believe that when you state that all truth is relative, that you are not commenting that all truth is correct, but that there is no truth. And, if that is the case, that there is no truth, then there is no reason to believe in any truth. If there is no truth, or no truth that we can find or that can be revealed to us, then you have quite a nihilistic view. I realize that ones who hold to relative truth would consider themselves existential, but to hold that baton, one would have to believe that the individual is responsible for his or her own actions. But if all truth is relative and valid, the there would be no need for responsibility because oneís individual truth can violate anotherís truth and still be valid as a standard for that individual. As each truth would only need to be valid for that individual, then one truth may violate or run contradictory to all other truths and still be just as valid. After all, who are we to say that one truth is more valid or concrete than another?
Now, why should a Christian, in particular, believe in absolute truth as opposed to relative truth? For one thing, the Bible warns about the truth found in manís heart. Left to his own devices, man will go with the way that seems right to him. And that would be okay, except for the fact that the Bible says that all men have been corrupted by sin. As a result, regardless of his intent, manís relative truth is doomed because manís vision has been corrupted by his sin. There is no chance whatsoever for any man to see clearly into absolute truth because men are fundamentally deluded by their sin. So, in order for men to receive truth at all in an unblemished state, the Creator of truth would have to transcend into manís experience. The Creator of all truth would need to reveal Himself to man because any attempt by man to understand truth would be corrupted at some point. Man, because of his sinful nature, cannot rely upon his own logic or feelings to deduce absolute truth.
For man to know truth, it had to be revealed to him: thus the Old Testament for the foundation of truth and Jesus as the fulfillment of truth. In no other religion has a man claimed to be God, the Creator. Man has claimed to be a god but never God. Why is that? Possible because if a man claimed to be the absolute God, then he would be required to have absolute truth. And Jesus claimed absolute truth. In fact, he claimed to be the truth, which would indicate the only truth. If any other man had made this claim, he would have been laughed at. But Jesus had miracles, wisdom and absolute morality to back up his claims.
Iíve heard the statement that the Bible is composed of moral stories about Jesus and that they are not true. But, if the stories about Jesus were fabricated, wouldnít unbelievers in Paulís day have tirelessly denounced the tales as fraud. Jesusí followers rightfully should have ended up no greater than the cult at Waco, or the followers of Jones. But they grew into a mighty following. Odd, that most Christians believe that the stories of Jesus are absolutely true. But I guess thatís why they followed Him in the first place.
Christians should believe in absolute truth because the focal point of their belief, Jesus, claimed to be absolute truth. To believe in relative truth would be to deny the basic tenets of the Christian faith.
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I agree with your last paragraph. I can't see how truth can be relative, even though I know there are people who try to stretch the truth, but succeed in deluding only themselves.
I admire your tackling this one! Question: what was the objective (goal) of this article? Did you reach it? Let me suggest that you state, in 15 words or less, the goal of this article. Then try a re-write for purposes of clarity. See it helps. Best regards and KEEP WRITING!