In one of Francis Bacon’s Essays, he wrote of truth. His opening lines are, “What is truth? said jesting Pilate; and would not stay for an answer.” It is a classic illustration of the observation that men stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing happened.
According to Oxford dictionaries, “Truth is dead. Facts are passé.” This is the opening line of Amy Wang, Washington Post writer, in her article titled “‘Post-Truth’ Named 2016 Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionaries.” Wang says the folks at Oxford say post-truth denotes “circumstances in which objective facts are less influential . . . than appeals to emotion . . . [creating] an atmosphere in which [truth] is irrelevant.”
Reading this causes me to ask: “Are the observations of the Oxford word scholars, themselves, according to objective and absolute facts?” In other words, is this idea of post-truth according to the truth? Truth is “the state of being the case, the body of real things . . . the property of being in accordance with fact or reality.” Truth is reality.
A decade ago, comedian Stephen Colbert popularized a word of similar nonsense called truthiness. Just as Oxford made post-truth the word of the year in 2016, Merriam-Webster labeled truthiness the word of the year in 2006. In his skit about this word, Colbert defined truthiness as “believing something that feels true, even if it isn’t supported by fact.” Dick Meyer of CBS News wrote that truthiness is “the definitive cultural acknowledgment of moral relativism.”
It is the moral morass of relativism that clears the way for this stuff. In her book, Telling the Truth: Why Our Schools, Our Culture, and Our Country have Stopped Making Sense, Lynne Cheney says:
A growing number of educators simply dismiss notions of objectivity and evidence. They teach that “what’s fact” depends solely on our point of view. The world these people describe has no truth in it, nor any reality. All of the things we think are true, they say, are merely the inventions of white European males; and what we need are other versions of history, ones aimed not at achieving evenhandedness and amassing evidence, but at advancing politically correct viewpoints. (“The Truth is Never Out of Date” Reader's Digest, Jan. 1996: 135-32).
Today’s cultural battle involves the distortion of words. It is the result of an agenda based in moral relativism that infiltrates large segments of our country—government, education, business, entertainment, etc. It leads to the decline, decay, and eventual destruction of civilization as we know it. It involves the re-writing of both history and the dictionary. Large masses of humanity are affected as the meanings of crucial words such as God, truth, male, female, man, woman, marriage, life, death, right, wrong, good, evil, et al., are distorted. Such words and their absolute objective meanings are foundational to the existence and being of humans.
The Founders of America spoke confidently about the reality of “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God, truths . . . self-evident, their Creator, the Supreme Judge of the world, and the protection of divine Providence.” However the philosophy of relativism has permeated our culture to the degree that, even at the highest level of leadership, we have been told the following: “Implied in its [the U.S. Constitution’s] structure was a rejection of absolute truth, the infallibility of any idea . . . or theology . . . that might lock future generations into a single unalterable course” (Obama, The Audacity of Hope, 93).
A "structure" that includes “rejection of absolute truth”! What does that mean? Is that absolutely the truth? Statements like this show how widespread the influence of moral relativism is in our country.
Repeatedly, Dr. Warren, in his monumental apologetics work, emphasized absolute moral judgment must go hand in hand with the absolute reality of God; and, the absolute reality of God must go hand in hand with absolute moral judgment. Without absolute moral judgment, there are no absolutes. Without absolutes, there is no absolute moral judgment. Among the most powerful moments of Dr. Warren’s work in this line of argumentation were those times when he quoted the chilling statement of Robert H. Jackson of SCOTUS, and Chief of Counsel for the United States in the Nuremburg trials of the Nazi war criminals. In his closing address, July 26, 1946, Jackson said the Nazis were tried by a law that is higher than the “provincial and transient,” that “found embodiment in the codes of all nations” (The Nürnberg Case, 122). Beyond both geography (the provincial) and time (the transient), this can only be the Moral Law of God.
God is the Ultimate Reality. God is the Ultimate Absolute Truth. To restore great morality in our nation we must restore great knowledge of the certainty that truth is absolute. To restore great knowledge of the certainty that truth is absolute we must restore great knowledge of the certainty of the existence of God. Post-truth is nonsense. The truth of God is the only way to ultimately make sense of life (cf. Romans 1:20-25). This is reality. This is the truth. This is what Warren Apologetics Center is about. This is why WCAC needs your support.
Charles C. Pugh III