Coram Deo Blog

Guarding Against Relativism

In my morning devotionals recently, I came across a topic of great significance for all of those who would be sincere followers of Christ. In a time when personal opinions and emotions seem to dominate the headlines of our newspapers and 24 hour cable news stations, as opposed to a simple and accurate reporting of facts, we must remember that truth is not ultimately defined by our thoughts, emotions, or opinions. Truth is truth... because truth is true. It's frightening how far we have moved away from the fundamental reality that there is truth in the world. For far too many, truth is a relative and malleable concept. But when men claim that truth is relative, what they are actually doing is placing truth in subjection to that which is not true. When someone claims that "their truth" is different from the truth of Scripture, what they are actually saying is that "their opinion" is more valuable than discovering, submitting, and living according to truth of God's word. Their rejection of the truth does not change the truth. Atheists and skeptics have thrown their pebbles of doubt at the wall of God's truth for thousands of years, and they have made no progress whatsoever in knocking it down. In essence then, they are not removing truth at all but are rather placing something else above the truth. Whatever that "something else" is, the result is the same...confusion and darkness rather than peace and light.

For those who would sincerely follow Christ, we need to protect ourselves from the waves of relativism that have overtaken so many in our culture. We do that by reading and studying the truth of God's word, and speaking with God daily in prayer. As we do so, we must remember that the seeds of relativism can be sown even the gardens of Christianity. We must remember that God's word is not "ours" to interpret as "we" would desire. Rather, it is the unchanging truth of our unchanging God. We must be careful not to use Scripture merely to advance our own agenda, but rather to advance the Kingdom of God. Doing so will at times lead to struggle, and we will be tempted to place our feelings, emotions, and opinions above the truth we discover in the Word. John D. Barry said it well when he wrote the following in his "One-Year Daily Devotional"

"When we use Scripture for our own gains or battles, we are acting like Christ’s tempter—not Christ. We might think that we are defending the gospel, but if it’s not about Christ’s virgin birth, suffering, death, resurrection, or continued presence in our lives, it’s really not about fundamental truths."

In Christ,

Kent Welch