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C.S. Lewis - Objection #9: Relativism

Unknown-11Another objection to faith that C.S. Lewis struggled with was the question: Aren't morals relative? More than two-thirds of Americans deny any belief in absolutes and the statistics would be very similar in other countries.  

An an atheist, Lewis denied that there were any moral absolutes. When he became a Christian, he insisted that Christian morality had to go beyond mere personal opinion. It had to fit with life as a whole, or it was meaningless. 

Lewis queried where he got this idea of things being just and unjust. A person does not call a line crooked unless they have some idea of a straight line. An absolute standard of good suggests a God who is the infinite reference point. Lewis went to great lengths to document the universality and timelessness of moral standards. In the appendix to The Abolition of Man he cites the similar moral standards of ancient Egyptians, Babylonians, Hindus, Chinese, Greeks, Romans and others. Though the specifics may differ, the general outline is the same throughout all cultures. 

If there is no absolute standard for good and evil (God), there there is no evil. One or the other has to go, either atheism or a major argument for atheism.

The relativistic viewpoint is hopelessly inconsistent. The attempt create an ethic without God is doomed to failure. No relativist who has been given absolute power has used that power benevolently. 

[Summarised from Chapter 11 of Art Lindsley's C.S. Lewis' Case for Christ]

Next: Lewis and Other Religions.

Comments

Thank you pastor Mark Conner for writing this blog notes. I'm a Swedish pastor in a little church in Sweden about 50 members.I usually visit this website a couple of times every week and always got something to think about. I'm also a visitor of the website of your church. Thank you for your wonderful resources with notes from your sermons and so on. First time I heard you preaching was in Uppsala in Sweden maybe three years ago. You talked about seven important tools building the church. It was wonderful, and from that time I have read a lot of your books, and listened to a lot of your teaching, and I-ve been so blessed. Thank You and God bless you brother. Maybe see you some time somewhere.
With Love
Gerth Thorstensson, Sweden

Thanks for your encouragement, Gerth. I really appreciate it! God bless you and your ministry.

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