Those of us who work in campus ministry hear these kinds of phrases a lot: “There are no absolutes in the world today. What’s true for you isn’t necessarily true for others. We all need to tolerate one another.” I have heard those sorts of statements from students, faculty, campus administrators, and other campus chaplains for decades. I even remember occasions where a student group opposed the message of Jesus we tried to disseminate on campus, and no one used those phrases to defend our right to free speech. A faculty member told me one time that we were lucky to even be on campus, and he said our message was narrow-minded and hurtful.
I learned long ago that regardless of how smart people are, there is a wide understanding (and even less agreement) of what is true, right, and appropriate. There is a legitimate moral confusion in society about what is morally binding on all of us. The motto many seem to live by today on campus is, ”Get what you want regardless of the cost – even if it means cheating.”
The old underpinnings of western society that honored God’s standards of personal integrity, honesty, and accountability have been eroding and forgotten.
Read 2 Chronicles 34:3-33.
In many ways our culture resembles the ancient kingdom of Judah. Their people had adopted a shifting view of morality, where they conducted idol worship in direct rebellion against God’s instructions to worship and serve Him alone. They clearly rejected God’s absolute standards set forth after Moses led them out of slavery in Egypt and they agreed to live according to the Ten Commandments. Years later they ignored God to the point where they even forgot where the Book of the Law (which included the Commandments, and other instructions for living in covenant unity with the One True God), was kept. Then the boy king Josiah arrived.
“While he was still young, Josiah began to seek the God of his father David” (v 3). Josiah set out to clean up Judah and Jerusalem (v 3-8). In the renewal process, the priests rediscovered the Book of the Law – the first five books of the Bible (v 15). Josiah’s response was to read the Book to his entire Kingdom and command the people to “obey all the words of the covenant written in this book” (v 31). The result was a moral re-awakening and period of spiritual renewal – temporary, though – for the nation. But the results were far-reaching.
Today, as always, there is only one source of true discernment. It is found in God’s Word, the Bible. We can’t read the Scriptures to an entire nation like Josiah did, but we need to consider how we can model its principles and call people to know the Author of Life. The mission of Chi Alpha’s is to “Reconcile Students to Christ: Transforming the University, the Marketplace, and the World.” We believe the Bible alone declares the way to be right with God, one another, and how to be involved in being good stewards of all of creation.
I am asking you to immerse yourself in God’s Word each day, to put your neighbor’s interest above your own (on campus and in the marketplace), to refuse to compromise God’s standards of holiness, and to serve as an effective ambassador and communicator of the message Jesus gave to His followers. Society will eventually take notice the difference Jesus makes in your life.
Serve globally. “There are no absolutes” is a contradiction in terms. Represent Jesus absolutely.
Love is a verb,