Western ideals are overdue for a reexamination. Examining our value system is necessary but difficult.
Firstly, our culture moves at an incredible speed, and so stepping back to evaluate its ideals becomes difficult.
Secondly, attempting to distinguish which of the values within our society are absolute (if any) from those which are absurd is tricky. Tricky because I have my personal preferences. Also, tricky because culture has its own preferences.
Let’s be reminded, ours is a society whose obsession is short-term. It is not concerned with the past or future. It neglects eternal values. “The culture adopts a carpe diem mentality because tomorrow is uncertain. Snatch the present kiss, get rich quick, seize the power, popularity, fame and opportunity of the moment, because only present values can be grasped.”* As the tempo of change accelerates, the present grows ever shorter and therefore more transient.
From that same system of truth and values follows the doctrine of relativism. Since everything is temporal and subject to incessant change, nothing absolute exists. Everything becomes relative truth and error, including moral, aesthetic, and spiritual considerations.
I endeavor to reexamine society’s values in light of Scriptural truth—much of which has been tossed out by society. I do this even while being a part of society. This is the concept that Jesus has in mind when he prays to the Father . . .
15I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. 16They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 17Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. 18As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world.
9The brother in humble circumstances ought to take pride in his high position. 10But the one who is rich should take pride in his low position, because he will pass away like a wild flower. 11For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich man will fade away even while he goes about his business . . . 21Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you . . . 26If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. 27Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
* P.A. Sorokin from Crisis of Our Age