By admin at 2018-09-17 • 0 collector • 157 pageviews

                                        From Relativism to Truth



                       Jesus said to him, “l am  the way, the truth, and the life. No one

                                       comes to The Father’ except through Me .

                                                          (John 14:6)


Scripture Reading: John. 8:31-47



Objective: to understand the Idol that denies we have access to universal truth and the source of all truth in our Lord Jesus Christ.


Introduction: When Jesus spoke of truth at His trial, Pilate responded, “What is truth?” (John 18:38). ln Pilate‘s world, black and white often merged into gray. Our culture lives in that gray world today. So what is truth? Let’s look at two basic kinds. Universal truth concerns reality, whereas relative truth concerns matters of opinion. These two are fundamentally different. lf you say, “God exists” and l say, “God doesn’t exist,” one of us is wrong. That’s universal truth. However, if you say, “Broccoli tastes good to me” and I say, “Broccoli doesn’t taste good to me," we’re both right. That's relative truth — it’s relative to me. Truth gets confusing when we fail to maintain the distinction between truth and taste. We live in a multicultural society with many conflicting beliefs about reality. Some believe in one God; others believe in many gods, and some believe in no god at all. Many believe the Bible is true, and many others don’t. We also have differing beliefs about the origins of the universe and life, the nature of morality and the meaning of life,  and what hap-pens when we die. For every question about reality, there’s only one right answer; the rest are wrong. However, we don’t always agree about reality or know when beliefs match reality. To exist peacefully in pluralistic societies, all citizens should respect the freedom of others to hold their own beliefs. At the same time, if we are to help each other, everyone should agree that there is an absolute truth and be willing to seek it. With patience and trust, beliefs can change as we learn from one another and grow in our acceptance of reality as it is, rather than as we want it to be. That’s called tolerance.

Unfortunately, our society has increasingly embraced relativism. This view of truth is central to postmodernism, a worldview that degrades all truth to relative truth. This relativism holds that humans have no access to universal truth. We can make guesses about reality, but no one knows. Having claimed that all statements about reality are merely opinions, relativism concludes that all opinions are equally valid truths. lt’s no surprise that the relativistic idol rejects fact-based naturalism and revelation-based Christianity equally, since each claims to know the truth about reality. Relativism must redefine tolerance too. Citizens are tolerant when they accept each other’s truths as equally valid. Consequently, claiming access to the truth is considered intolerant and intolerable. Even a cursory reading of the Bible shows how irreconcilable relativism is to the Christian worldview. Take the Gospel of John, for instance. Not only does it claim that we can know the truth and the freedom it brings (8:31, 32), but it boldly tells us where ultimate and absolute truth resides. When he asked Jesus that key question about truth, little did Pilate know that he was actually speaking to the way, the truth, and the life — the very fullness of the truth of God (18:37; 14:6; 1:14)! By the Spirit and Scripture, we have direct access and understanding of this great Creator and Redeemer of all life. We know what we know because we know Him.



Questions for Study and Discussion


1 Define relativism and postmodernism. How are these idols seen in today’s world? How does the statement “That’s your truth”  reveal relativism?


2 Discuss the difference between universal and relative truths. What does relativism do to the distinction between them? What types of tolerance are outlined in the introduction? Which type do you hold to, and why? .


3 Discuss Jesus and Pilate’s conversation on truth in John 18:33- 38. How does it speak to our time? How does John 8:31-47 challenge relativism and uphold universal truth?


 4 Where does the Gospel of John locate “truth”? John 1:14; 14:6; 16:13; 17:17. What‘s the best way to share the truth with the world? 18:37.


5 Share your favorite verse in the Bible on truth and why it‘s your favorite. How does it inform and renew your thinking in our relativistic world?


 Conclusion: Our relativistic culture denies the existence of universal truth. But Christians know the truth that comes by divine revelation, through the Word and Spirit of truth (John 16:13; 17:17). Christianity isn’t founded on a set of objective facts of the scientific sort or on subjective opinions of the postmodern kind. The truth of faith is founded on the living, breathing person of Jesus Christ, and He says, “Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (18:37).


Apply This Week. Think about how relativism impacts your understanding of truth and tolerance, and how you demonstrate both. Pray for wisdom and courage in sharing the truth about our Lord to those who don’t know Him. 

1 Replies | Last update 2018-09-19
2018-09-19   #1

Wow! What an awesome lesson? Do you know that Christians are rapidly accepting relativism without understanding it's consequence and implication?

The lesson clear distinguished universal truth and relativistic truth.

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