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When I took a college class on philosophy, the teacher made one of those profound statements with a short string of words, but they packed a punch. He stated, “ Ideas have consequences.” That phrase has stuck with me, and I see it holds. I started hearing this one specific phrase about fifteen years ago, and I have continued to listen to some form of it. The phrase, “That is true for you, but it is not true for me,” reveals a worldview that puts man as the arbiter of truth. It has become so pervasive in our culture it is the number one objection when sharing our faith in Jesus.

In this article, I want to pull back the veil on this statement to let you see it for what it is: an arbitrary statement. The next time someone says, “That is true for you, but it is not true for me.” Hopefully, you will be ready to answer it a little better. Here are my three ways to expose this little arbitrary statement used as a silencing tactic by unbelievers.

 

  1. There is no such thing as either personal truth in morals standards or logical truth claims

Do we all live on our little personal island and come up with our own morals? Do we gather our morals from our governing leaders? When someone is having a conversation with me and they are saying that individuals come up with their own morals (truth) they always have one escape clause attached to the end of their statement, “as long as they are not hurting anyone.” How can that be determined? What do they mean by that?

Feel free to use the two questions the next time you are engaging someone who believes denying universal morals makes them vanish into thin air. People can sit at home and be a drunk and not get behind the wheel and kill someone but sit home and physically and verbally abuse their family. A porn addict can sit at home and stare at his screen and not sexual assault any person physically, but still exploits people in the multibillion-dollar porn industry. It is our job to show the person the slippery slope of subjectivity “that is true for you, but not true for me.”  Both the drunk and the porn addict are being true to themselves; however, their small autonomous world can only be exposed as wrong by God’s universal truth.

The list of subjective insanity can go on, and it only continues to grow here are two more:

First, Demi Levato, an actor, has a split personality. Instead of finding help for her either demon possession or mental disorder, she demands that people use the personal pronoun (they) to address her. She (it) identifies as non-binary in her sexual orientation. “Professing to be wise they have become fools.” (Romans 1:22)

Second, Kellogg’s said it will donate $50,000 to GLAAD to support their anti-bullying and LGBTQ advocacy work.  Read full write up 

Let’s all work together to end bullying, but look at what they snuck in as an addition to the bullying eradication- LGBTQ advocacy work. On the side of the cereal box they have, and I quote, “(to amazing to put into a box he/him /she/her they/them and your own: fill in the blank).” My professor was right. Ideas have consequences. What is the idea, (well that’s true for you but it’s not true for me.) What do the abusive drunk, porno addict, Demi Levato, and the LGBTQ agenda have in common? We all had it in common before Jesus. It is true for them even if it is not true for us. This is the ultimate way to live in sin without any accountability. However, in the title I typed, America’s evolution of autonomy will self-destruct. These ideas are so destructive that they will eventually destroy everyone, including those trying to implement them consistently. Here is how to lovingly show people the truth that try to propagate these ideas.

Let’s deal with a few logical truth claims you can have fun with when talking with someone who makes the statement, “that is true for you, but it is not true for me.” As we see, this idea has catastrophic consequences. It unchains you from sanity and loosens the person into the realm of insanity. These questions are a way that you can light-heartedly help the person see the insanity behind the idea.

Just ask, “Hey, if you don’t mind, could you tell me what time it is?” When they look at their watch to tell the time, simply state a random time. If they say it is 3:30 pm, you could say no, it is 5:30 pm. You will see the shock on their face; they may recheck their watch. When they give you the time again, give another random time. Then just look at them and smile and state, “3:30 pm may be true for you, but it is not true for me.”

You could do the same for the weather. Hey, “what is the temperature outside today?” When they check their phone to give you the temperature, just reduce it by fifty degrees. You get the picture. You will be shocked. You will talk with intelligent people who share this statement, “it may be true for you, but it is not true for me,” yet deny it when it comes to other topics. Some will tell you no one can know the truth about religious matters. That’s another article for another day.

However, some will not give the autonomy up quickly, so you may need to give another example before they get it. Remember, your whole point is to lead the person to the Gospel, repentance, and faith in Jesus Christ.

I want to extend some charity, let’s just say for argument’s sake, that there was no universal truth and man could strive for autonomy. What would topple man from his autonomous throne?  Well, some citizens found out last year in the city of CHAZ.

 

  1. Your autonomy stops when it conflicts with governing leaders

Let us take a current-day example of a man trying to apply his autonomous nature in a civilized society other than the LGBTQ community. We have a short-lived city in 2020 called CHAZ, in the heart of Seattle, Washington. This city that sprung up overnight gave Seattle extortion, rape, gang shooting, and several beatings until the governing authorities slowly and reluctantly took the city’s heart back, because the people who own businesses and paid taxes wanted their city back. See, personal autonomy is destroyed when the governing authorities are using their God-given authority to rule. “For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval,  for he is God’s servant for your good.” (Romans 13:3-4b)

If you do what is right, you should have no fear of authority. However, CHAZ, the authorities, got it backward for a bit. They were punishing those doing good- paying taxes and running service businesses- by letting these thugs roam the streets and destroy their property.  Until the people had enough and demanded that elected governing officials enforce the rule of law.

We could state case after case, but there is no need for man’s autonomy when it conflicts with governing authorities will be toppled every time. See what was true for the individual citizens of CHAZ does not matter when it contradicts God’s law and the governing authorities’ rule of law.  Nevertheless, what happens when governing authorities turn away from God’s objective truth? What happens when the ruling elite try to say we are going to rule without God? The way America’s branches of Government, on the whole, are right now.

  1. The only way to escape this vicious cycle of personal autonomy and the tyrannical government is to lift your head to clearer and greener pastures of the good shepherd who gives a universal standard.

Two points here:

Christians need to be holding positions in education.

This is a side thought that needs to be written on in an article all by itself, but I have to bring it up. If we believe that Jesus has come out of the grave and His kingdom is advancing with every saved soul, then our societies should be changing. This means that Christians should be in every branch of government representing the great lawgiver himself. We should also be in the education system teaching from grammar school to the local trade school and up to the ivy league doctorate program.

Our God gives all these great disciplines, from mathematics in computer science to the best surgical educational programs. Our worldview is so comprehensive that it provides a foundation to allow these disciplines. Why do we let other worldviews rob us of our God-given platform? What do we do when our government begins to turn away from universal truths that logical humans use every day?

When Government turns its back on universal truth 

If the government turns its back on the universal truth that gives it the ability to govern righteously and justly, we lift our heads to clear skies and greener pastures of God’s word. God makes males and females. He says he will punish those who are evil (murderers of the innocent, rapist, extortionist, sexual abusers, etc.). His truth does not change. He is the same yesterday and forever. The government will silence the mirage of personal autonomy, but who will silence a government that has run off the rails of God’s universal standard? The people and God. We must first lift our heads to the clearer and greener pastures of the good shepherd.

Understanding God’s truth helps us take the person we are talking with either from making their own rules for life or submitting blindly to our government, to listening to the voice of the true shepherd. “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32) The picture of repentance and faith is becoming more evident. Realizing that we have nothing apart from God revealing it and giving it to us to enjoy. This will set us all free from the bondage that sin brings.

I was teaching a class on the top five common objections to the Christian faith. One well-meaning guy raises his hand and states, “Why do Christian morals matter to atheists?” It was a great question. First, we don’t have Christian morals; they are universal, and everyone uses them, and second, it matters like air matters to the human body- without it, you don’t have existences. Without God, you don’t have the foundational existence framework for objective moral standards that atheists use every day.

Right and wrong objectivity comes from God, not from individuals or governments. What makes the Christian different from Antifa and other radical groups is that we are not appealing to personal subjective whims either in individual people or fluctuating government rulers, but the God of all reality.

How do we apply truths into our conversations with neighbors, coworkers, and friends and not be silenced by the government? Remember to use these two questions: How can that be determined? What do they mean by that? I also want to share three sides to every conversation that will help you further apply those questions. It will be exclusively for our champion community. Find out how to become a part of our Champion Community