Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Relativistic Christ?

It's amazing to me how much this culture of relativism has infiltrated our society.  This idea of "what's right for you is right for you; what's right for me is right for me" has overrun the world.  We are told that tolerance is best, diversity is always a good thing, and we must not judge.  I even read an article recently describing a sex workshop at Yale in which students were taught to "respond with 'understanding' and 'compassion'" to those who may have participated in unnatural (yes, that's right, I called it what it is--unnatural) sexual activities such as bestiality, taking payment for sex, and incestuous fantasies. (http://www.campusreform.org/blog/?ID=4646) Have we reverted back to barbarism?

But the thing that bothers me the most is how much this relativism has entered into the Christian realm.  Even Christians of the best intentions have fallen victim to the fantasy of a relativistic Jesus.  We've all heard it said:  "It doesn't matter what denomination you are; as long as you believe in Jesus you're saved!"  And then of course, there is the challenge, "Well how do you know what you believe is right?  What about what I believe?  Religion doesn't matter.  All that matters is a relationship with Jesus."

Well, it's true, Jesus does want a relationship.  But it goes much deeper than that.  God is Truth.  There can only be one Truth; otherwise Truth wouldn't exist.  (It's worth pointing out that the statement "everything is relative" contradicts itself because the phrase assumes as objective law that everything is relative, but if everything is relative, there can be no objective law; therefore it's premise "everything is relative" could not be true.)  The Jesus of the Gospel didn't go around sanctioning everything; in fact, he turned everything people knew on it's head.  He forgave sins, but he first acknowledged them and told them to "sin no more."  He rebuked his disciples when they spoke against his plan.  He was absolutely not tolerant of sin and excess (as shown when he angrily drove the money changers out of the temple.)  While he believed in diversity with regard to gender and ethnicity (speaking to the Samaritan woman for example), he was clear that he chose people of diverse background so that they all may be one in their beliefs (See John 17:20-23), not that we simply may coexist.  And while it is clear that we must not judge the hearts and souls of one another, it is also clear that we must admonish and teach one another as we also pay attention to our own actions (Col 3:16, Luke 6:41).  How can we do such a thing and walk in right ways if we are so busy tolerating everyone else and their actions?

Jesus established the Twelve and he made Peter the leader, the Rock.  Why would he have done this if he did not plan on speaking the Truth, the whole Truth to the generations to come?  It was already made clear that he desired his Church to be one, so why would he have intended the Church to split into thousands of differing sects teaching often contradictory things?  Certainly this is not the truth that he intended.  Jesus is not relativistic.  He is Truth itself, and Truth cannot be contradictory.  There can be only one True Church.

Finally, a quote from Pope Benedict XVI:  "A Jesus who sanctions everything is a Jesus wihtout the cross, for such a Jesus would not need the torment of the cross to save mankind..."

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