I’m finishing up Ethics in Management today and man am I glad. This class was a good exercise though in not only defending absolute truth (as it pertains to scripture and such), but also taking down the whole system of relativism which much of ethical theory is based on.
Post-modernity has infiltrated every facet of the West, and it seems people are slowly discovering it’s a dead-end philosophy. However, many within the academic community seem to still be holding on to this thought (not sure why, they’re supposed to be the smart ones). So, taking some of the apologetic arguments from one of my favorite books, Relativism: Feet Firmly Planted in Mid-Air, by Francis J. Beckwith and Gregory Koukl, I was successfully able to take down this system which is what a majority of the theory behind ethics in our day comes from.
The foundation for much of our ethical theory these days is based within relativism, and if the foundation is faulty, the whole structure crumbles. This led me to point out that the only system that works is the one God has designed, through Christ. This is truth, Jesus is truth, all other systems are faulty. Ethics must be based in who God is; righteous, holy, loving, perfect, just, patient.
But if ethics is based on a system that states all truth is relative and the definition of ethical standards depends on the cultural context, then there is no absolute moral truth. Unfortunately, not everyone in our culture holds to the biblical view, and therefore, there still remains a problem of what exactly is absolute truth as it pertains to ethics and morals.
Well, Jesus stated Himself, “I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but through me.” He also claimed to be God stating, “Before Abraham was, I AM.” Based upon the Old Testament where God told Moses in Exodus 3, “Tell them I AM has sent you,” Jesus was not only making Himself equal with God, He was claiming to be God. So either He was a liar and insane, or He is the God of glory.
He will not simply let you state He was a good teacher, His claims do not allow for this (just read the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John). He wasn’t just another good teacher or prophet in the same line as Mohammed, Buddha, etc, He claimed to be God Himself! No other religious figure in the past has claimed such a thing (with the exception of few cult leaders).
So the point is, Jesus is Lord, He is King, He is Messiah, He is God over all things, through which the world was created, through which men have been bought by His blood. He is excellent, holy, and wonderful, and nothing compares with Him. He is absolute truth and He defines reality. All other realities are relative to Him and He will not allow for any other god, because He is God!
Therefore, if He is truth and defines reality, should we not be basing our ethical standards upon this reality? Well, not everyone believes in Christ so this will never fly in terms of implementing this into our culture (unless God so permits), but we must strive to glorify God as believer’s by presenting Christ in this manner, because there are only two things people can believe about Christ, either He was telling the truth and is God, or He was a liar and crazy. And we who believe know in our hearts that He is who He said He was, mainly because He regenerated our hearts to even perceive this to be so and to know it as the truth.
So as believer’s, our ethical standards must be based in Christ Himself, who He is, what He’s done. The only thing this class has done for me is 1) given me a proving ground to thwart relativism and improve my apologetic argumentation for Christ, and 2) strengthen my convictions that relativistic theory is bogus and will never work, but also to point people to the cross where our Savior hung and died, and to His grave where He rose from the dead.