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Thomas Gallatin / October 22, 2021

Americans Have Lost Faith in Truth

The truth will set you free, but 54% of American adults believe truth is relative.

Since our inception in 1996, our motto has been veritas vos liberabit, which is Latin for the last phrase of Jesus’ declaration in John 8:32: “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Unfortunately, the postmodern idea that truth is relative has really taken hold in America.

A recent survey from George Barna found that the majority of American adults (54%) now believe that truth is subjective and that there are no moral absolutes.

“We’re just at a place in our country’s history now where that’s the default view,” Barna stated. “Most people would say all truth is subjective and there’s no kind of objective truth based on an external standard. They would say they’re the standard that determines what truth is.” Such assertions are bunk, of course, and they explain much of our nation’s troubles.

American culture is rapidly embracing the view that personal self-interests trump commitment to truth. The result of this kind of thinking is significantly negative, as it erodes societal trust. Barna explains: “If I decide it’s in my best interests to lie to you, I’ll do it. Interpersonal deception will become more common and we’ll have lower levels of trust toward other people, making it harder to have relationships because we’ll no longer trust that what other people tell us is real.”

In short, people stop believing that anyone is telling the truth, or that anyone can be trusted. “It tears apart society by making us, in essence, a bunch of savages who look out for ourselves without turning to any higher principles to solve disagreements, point us in the right direction, or give us any sense of moral purpose,” Barna observes. “When you take absolute moral truth out of the equation, we’re no different from the cavemen.”

Furthermore, this erosion in truth is producing the cultural attacks against America’s founding principles of life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The foundation for those ideals is rooted in the belief of absolute truth — that morality is not some mere creation of mankind but a law of the universe inscribed by the hand of God the Creator.

When the concept that God is the ultimate author and source of all truth and morality is no longer accepted and believed, then a massive moral vacuum is created and godless power-hungry individuals seek to take advantage. Like the Serpent in the Garden of Eden, falsely promising Adam and Eve greater autonomy and empowerment if they reject God’s laws and truth, today’s godless Left promises a more “just” and happy society if people will just hand over more power to these benevolent government elites.

Government becomes god and therefore whatever the government says is so. Whatever laws the government makes become the moral code, which of course is subject to change whenever the government wishes it so. The great irony in all of this is that individual freedom and individual moral responsibility is lost. And that’s the truth.

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