From the Missionary Baptist Seminary in Little Rock, Arkansas students who successfully complete a program of study acquire a panoply of tools, because of which a graduate can go on to become a professional in fields requiring theological expertise. I was empowered by the panoply of tools that I acquired to become a professional Apologist, and am currently completing a major project in which elements (I call them Fallible Religious Constructs) within the vast, and ever expanding construct called Theological Relativism are defined, documented and disclosed. Theological Relativism is much like “Moral Relativism.”
Why I mention “Moral Relativism” is because I just read a Blog article by the Pastor of Living Faith Missionary Baptist Church in Fort Smith Arkansas. Brother Jerry Grimes wrote the Blog Article in 2016 entitled: Where have all the Heretics gone? Posted March 18, 2016
-Retrieved from https://wrinkledwit.com/
Professional Christian Philosopher and Apologist Dr. William Lane Craig described the category known as Relativism accordingly,
“Relativism is the view that something is relative rather than absolute. That is to say, the thing in question (a truth, a moral value, a property) is the case only in relation to something else. For example, being rich is relative. Relative to most Americans, you’re probably not rich. But relative to the people of the Sudan, you are fabulously rich! By contrast, it is not just relatively true that the Cubs did not win the 2009 World Series. It is absolutely true that they did not win. Many people today think that moral principles and religious beliefs are at best relative truths: true, as they say, for you, but not true for me.” Craig, William Lane (2010-03-01). On Guard: Defending Your Faith with Reason and Precision Kindle Locations 262-267. David C. Cook. Kindle Edition.
Further, Brother Jerry Grimes affirmed: “There is no longer a bold line between right and wrong. There was a time when such a line was etched in stone for all to see. It was clear, non-debatable, a true compass for morality. But now the line of morality is drawn in the sand. As the tide of relativism rises, the waves of tolerance have washed the line away, the same waves will destroy a nation. The foolish man who built his house upon the sand could only watch as his house went splat!”
I likewise affirm: There is no longer a bold line between fallible and infallible. There was a time when such a line was etched in stone for all to see. Infallible truths were clear, non-debatable, a true compass for theology. But now, like moral relativism, theological relativism has drawn its line in the sand. As the tide of theological relativism rises, the waves of tolerance have washed the line away; regrettably, the same waves will destroy a nation. I concur that the foolish man who built his house upon sand (Fallible Religious Constructs) could only watch as his house fell: The words of Christ are infallible, and will never be washed away!
Brother Jerry Grimes further stated that in 2002 Fox News analyst Bill O’Reilly (before Bill O’Reilly was ousted from Fox News) wrote an article where he asked “Why is it wrong to be right?” In this same article he cites “recent Zogby poll findings regarding what is being taught in American universities. Studies indicate 75% of American college professors currently teach that there is no such thing as right and wrong. Rather, they treat the questions of good and evil as relative to individual values and cultural diversity.” –Retrieved from https://wrinkledwit.com/
Alarming to this professional apologist is the masquerading of the fallible as the “infallible.” I am not interested in proclaiming all things heretical; for, one would not need to engage in the arduous profession of Apologetics were he simply wanting to denounce everyone who disagrees with him as a “Heretic.” Much more rather, this professional apologist applies his expertise toward the process of clearly demarcating the fallible from the infallible, restoring the bold line between the two.
I agree with Brother Jerry Grimes that “heretics” still exist; but, also, add to his alarm the fact that the bold line that once made “fallible and infallible” clear has likewise been erased like that line between “right and wrong.” Theological Relativism requires no spirit of Christ, no integrity, no professionalism, in order that one might present one’s preferred Fallible Religious Construct as an “infallible” truth from God’s Word. That which has been written is all but lost as the global internet generates endless e-platforms, e-schools, e-colleges, Social Media, and even e-Seminaries that are willing accommodate everything equally.
Matt Slick, President of CARM stated: “Relativism is the philosophical position that all points of view are equally valid, and that all truth is relative to the individual. This means that all moral positions, all religious systems, all art forms, all political movements, etc., are truths that are relative to the individual.” –
-Retrieved from https://carm.org/what-relativism
Theological Relativism has afforded such an accommodating environment as to find advocates of Fallible Religious Constructs lauded as though they were “Defenders of the Faith,” rather than “Advocates of Fallible Religious Constructs.” Today, one will hear an adamant presentation by an advocate of Calvinism, and not once will the advocate define, document, or disclose the fallible elements within it.
As a trained, theological professional, I have observed a deliberate concealment of fallible elements to occur each time an unprofessional, amateur adamantly affirms that of which he is ignorant. Calvinism is not “equally valid” with that which the texts actually state. Numerous “fallible elements” are deeply embedded within Calvinism, Arminianism, Molinism, Traditionalism, and even Landmarkism. Therefore, then, the abandonment of any clear line according to which these “Fallible Religious Constructs” might otherwise be clearly demarcated from the infallible written Word of God, have all but disappeared.
Echoing the words of Brother Jerry Grimes: “How do we solve the problem? How do we preach the “absolute” truth of God’s Word to a world that thinks and says, ‘you are right and I am right, nobody is wrong?’ The main thing we can do is exactly what God has told us to do, share the Gospel of Jesus!”
-Retrieved from https://wrinkledwit.com/
Preachers of mixed-grace gospels have found a safe haven within today’s “everybody’s right” environment nourished and fostered by Theological Relativism; for, to graciously demarcate God’s Holy Word from some mental construct of a man is seemingly too much for those who subscribe to the mantra of Theological Relativism; specifically, that notion expressed in Ihab Hassan’s 1987 book The Post-Modern Turn in which he discussed “New Gnosticism,” stating:
Our own mental constructs, he claims, are our knowledge. Human beings are becoming “gnostic creatures constituting themselves, determining their universe by symbols of their own making,” and he indicates science fiction and fantasy literature as examples. As with ancient Gnostics, the traditional codes no longer determine our meaning. The traditional canon of texts no longer has authority. Hassan sees a vast “revisionary will” at work in our culture, unsettling and heterogeneous, and he quotes Jean-Francois Lyotard’s now famous clarion call of postmodernism: “Let us wage war on totality.”
–Retrieved from “The Nag Hammadi Library [Third, completely revised Edition]. 1988 by James M. Robinson
Theological Relativists often banter between each other, comparing and contrasting one “Fallible Religious Construct” (FRC) with the other, generating such a flummox as to lead their audience to suppose that each FRC is “equally valid.” The question one need only ask: “Equally valid with what, the Scriptures?” Of course not, however, that is exactly the impression conveyed. As long as the FRCs are given equal hearing, then at no time does it occur to the audience that neither FRC was compared and contrasted with the Scriptures, misleading the hearer to believe that each FRC is equally valid, therefore, so also must the Bible, like the contrary FRCs, stand in contradiction.
The Christian Apologist, however, whose interest is in the Scriptures, like that of the Berean believers; namely, like those whose character demands that FRCs spoken by men be evaluated according to research within the Scriptures, in order to determine if those FRCs are actually infallible teachings in accordance with the Scriptures, or merely fallible expressions constructed by men.
The leading indicator of a FRC being presented as though it were infallible Scripture is the willingness of its advocate to compare and contrast it with another FRC, rather than with the Scriptures. For, as with anything to which one is favorably biased, an honest evaluation proves almost impossible. Thus, unless a student who acquires a panoply of tools is likewise willing to demonstrate the spirt of Christ, then he will avoid, at the cost of Christ’s cause, comparing and contrasting FRCs with the Scriptures, preferring to declare FRCs equally valid as the Scriptures.
Note: Panoply comes from the Greek word panoplia, which referred to the full suit of armor worn by “hoplites,” heavily armed infantry soldiers of ancient Greece. “Panoplia” is a blend of the prefix pan-, meaning “all,” and hopla, meaning “arms” or “armor.” (As you may have guessed already, “hopla” is also an ancestor of “hoplite.”) “Panoply” entered the English language in the 17th century, and since then it has developed other senses which extend both the “armor” and the “full set” aspects of its original use.
-Retrieved from http://www.merriam-webster.com