Some highly enlightened people are absolutely certain that nothing is absolutely certain…except of course, that which they are absolutely certain of. If that doesn’t make sense, you’ve got more savvy than they have….
There’s an old one-liner which is still a favorite of mine:
“I used to be indecisive, but now I’m not so sure”.
(COUNTER SILENCE “A Distance Left To Travel”)
My son’s high school science teacher has been working hard to convert any kids in his class who believe in God over to his faith, which is stringent agnosticism coupled with evolution. Once in a while the kids are taught a little science in the science class, but most of the time its philosophy, and one of the recent pearls of wisdom levelled at this largely malleable and captive young audience was that there are no absolutes in life, the universe or anything: nothing is absolutely certain.
That’s a strange claim coming from one who deals with the laws of nature every day, and particularly from one who is presumably getting paid to teach. What is he teaching-that nothing is objectively true but here’s a ton of homework on it all anyway? What’s the point of school if nothing can be known for sure?
Even the great Einstein, from whom some have extrapolated a bizarre form of relativity, was able to declare without hesitation that E=Mc2.
One thing the evolutionist is absolutely certain of is that anyone who disagrees with him must be wrong:
“It is absolutely safe to say that if you meet somebody who claims not to believe in evolution, that person is ignorant, stupid or insane (or wicked, but I’d rather not consider that)”.
(From Richard Dawkins’ Review of “Blueprints: Solving the Mystery of Evolution”).
Prominent atheist professor of the history of biology at Cornell University, William Provine, put it this way:
“Let me summarize my views on what modern evolutionary biology tells us loud and clear. . . . There are no gods, no purposes, no goal-directed forces of any kind. There is no life after death. When I die, I am absolutely certain that I am going to be dead. That’s the end for me. There is no ultimate foundation for ethics, no ultimate meaning to life, and no free will for humans, either.”
(William Provine, Origins Research 16, no. 1/2 (1994): 9; quoted in Technical Journal 10, no. 1 1996: 22).
The “no absolutes” assertion is one of many contemporary attempts to purge Christian morality, thought and influence, and the Judeo-Christian God from the world. It’s another way of short-circuiting reasoned debate, akin to insults often hurled at Christians such as “bigot”, “ignorant” and “hypocrite”.
And if you think about it, if there is no God, there are indeed no absolutes when it comes to morality: right and wrong are decided by the people via government and can be changed over and over again. Or to put it in more politically correct language, morality and ethics are “fluid” and evolve with humanity, and they are decided by the people according to circumstances and expedience.
One of the problems with this kind of thinking is that we can’t claim to have the moral high ground above the Adolph Hitlers of the world. Hitler wanted to purge the earth of weak and diseased humans: how can we say he was wrong, if there are no absolutes? Surely, the best we can say is that we “disagreed” with him. If he had been the victor in WWII, his standards of right and wrong would have ruled upon the earth.
If I were to show up for work three hours late and then excuse myself by saying that there are no absolutes so I can just work when I feel like it, I would lose my job, and rightly so.
I’ve told this story a few times before but it’s another of my favorites. A young acquaintance of mine once told me that “Christianity is just an excuse for morality”. One wonders how he would react if someone were to hit him over the head, steal his money, and run off with his girlfriend, because the rules of behavior which he and most of us wish those around us to live by are rules of morality. And we all have an inbuilt sense of what’s right and what’s wrong. We don’t need government to tell us that stealing is wrong and violence is wrong-what we need is to listen to our conscience and our Creator and to live by those standards.
The universe can be studied because there are absolutes. In fact, if there were no absolutes there would be no universe, it could not operate. So it is in the moral and the spiritual realm. If there is a God at all, He has a character, a personality, and He has standards of right and wrong which He wishes His Creation to live by. It’s a poor excuse to refuse to believe in or search for Truth by saying that no-one can know it. If the same excuse had been used in science we would be still living in the dark ages. Just as there are unchangeable, fundamental truths which hold our universe together, so there are moral and spiritual truths for our existence and benefit, and we should each be searching until we find them.