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What We Can't Not Know Chuck Colson

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What We Can't Not Know Chuck Colson

Post  Admin on Wed 06 Apr 2011, 12:17 pm

What We Can't Not Know
Universal Moral Truths

April 05, 2011 Chuck Colson

The great commandment in this postmodern, relativistic world of ours is
this: "Don't impose your morality on me."

Obviously, it didn't used to be this way. Once, if you mentioned basic
moral rules like the Ten Commandments, everyone would agree that they
were right. Not only were they right for all, but they were also known
to all. Everyone knew that honoring parents and telling the truth is
right for everyone. And everyone knew that deliberately taking innocent
human life, sleeping with your neighbor's spouse, and mocking God is
wrong for everyone. Today all of that has changed.

Or has it? According to University of Texas Professor J. Budziszewski,
it really hasn't -- at least not in the way you might think.

Budziszewski has just released the revised and expanded version of his
classic book, What We Can't Not Know. Budziszewski, a leading natural
law theorist, explains that there are certain basic moral truths that
all of us really know, even if we pretend to ourselves that we don't.
The murderer knows the wrong of murder; the adulterer knows the wrong of
adultery.

The Apostle Paul confirms this when he says in Romans 2 that God's law
is "written on the heart" -- everyone's heart, even the hearts of
nonbelievers. People who pose as moral skeptics are playing
make-believe, and, as Budziszewski writes, they are doing it badly.

But how can this be true? Haven't anthropologists told us that morality
is different in every culture? Budziszewski points out that different
cultures disagree only about the details of morality, not about the
basics. C. S. Lewis gave us a good example when he remarked that
although some cultures say you can have four wives and some say you can
have only one, up until very recently, every human culture has
recognized the sacredness of marriage.

Of course, as I've said many times on BreakPoint, we can see what
happens when we reject universal moral truths, what Budzisewski calls
the moral "common ground." The global economic meltdown is exhibit A.

Budziszewski admits that it's a slippery common ground, however, because
somebody can know the moral basics deep down and yet not recognize that
he or she really does know them. Paul said in Romans 1 that we
"suppress" the truth because of our sins. But if the knowledge is really
down there, then it can be dredged back up, no matter how deeply
suppressed.

That's what Paul tried to do. And that's what we should be trying to do
as well. And Budziszewski shows why and how we can do it.

I urge you to read the new edition of What We Can't Not Know. We've got
it for you in our bookstore at ColsonCenter.org
http://www.colsoncenter.org/wfp-home
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