We today live in an age where reality is based on opinion, where feelings equate to fact, and where universal truth is a thing of the past. Or so we are being pressured to believe by the culture around us.
In modern times, it is no longer enough to simply agree to disagree, respecting that we are entitled to our own opinions and have the right to decline to accept what does not align with our belief system. Instead, we must now acknowledge that another person’s beliefs are true for them, but not true for us. Truth has become subjective.
This is a product of moral relativism, an idea essential to the Postmodern thought to which our society currently conforms. Moral relativism holds that any moral or ethical belief is shaped by our cultural surroundings, and so is not universally determinable. Because of this, moral relativists believe we cannot “impose our moral views on others,” and ‘Reality’ is a social construct shaped by culture and individual experience (Glenn). Modern society approaches truth according to moral relativism.
Truth is historically defined as “that which is the case rather than what is manifest or assumed.” (“Truth”) In other words, truth itself ought to be determined by fact and reality, which is objective and unchanging. In recent years, this definition has been disregarded. Truth has come to mean whatever you or I want it to mean. In defining truth by the individual’s ever-changing opinions, the concept of truth essentially has been stripped of all meaning.
The phrase ‘speak your truth’ has become the mantra of a confused generation. You speak your truth, and I speak mine. Rather than a mutual agreement to dialogue, our culture is providing an excuse to dismiss alternate beliefs on reality. How can we, as a community, stand united when we are operating according to differently defined realities, lacking a universally acknowledged basis?
As Christians we are called to act as lights in the darkness, sharing the goodness of Christ in a society fraught with attempts to find meaning apart from God. To do this we must combat cultural normalcy while firmly being rooted in scriptural truths.
The concept of subjective reality promoted in society today does not align with the Christian faith, which holds that absolute truth does exist. Scripture is the direct Word of the Lord and lays out absolute truths for the sake of his people. As John 17:17 states, “[God’s] word is truth.”
God gives us scripture as a foundation by which to live and build our lives. Despite the differing beliefs among Christians, we are all rooted in the absolute truths in God’s Word. Essentially, each of us are united in the fact that “[Jesus] is the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through [him] (John 14:6).”
Despite the sure opposition that will come, we cannot let our knowledge of the unshakable truth go unshared amongst unbelievers. Sharing the gospel is especially necessary for a society so desperate for truth and meaning, so desperate even that its members invent an infinite number of realities to fulfill this longing.
Those who do not know Christ will claim that the Christian faith is narrow-minded and limiting. What is the value of following Christ alone in a world where infinite desires can be pursued and any manner of beliefs go unchallenged?
In actuality, following Christ brings the greatest possible freedom, surety, and fulfillment. As Christ himself said, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free (John 8:31-31).” There is no real meaning to a life in pursuit of anything but Jesus. This is why we must stand in opposition to the subjective claims of our culture. And most importantly this is why we, as Christians, must speak the absolute truth of the gospel in the midst of a society searching desperately for fulfillment.
Sunshine, Glenn. “The Rise of Postmodernism: Emerging Worldviews.” BreakPoint.org, 2019, https://www.breakpoint.org/the-rise-of-postmodernism-emerging-worldviews-3/. Accessed 20 November 2021.