On The Abolition of Man and secular trends…

In his book, The Abolition of Man, CS Lewis argues for the importance of an outside objective standard as a guide to living ethically.  In previous posts, we have also suggested reasons for the importance of an objective standard as a guide to faith and life (search “foundational principles” on our blog site).  Additionally, in his book Religion Within the Bounds of Pure Reason, Kant describes (in a secular sense) how rational ethical “maxims” come from a “spring” within.  Most importantly, Scripture itself explains why objective standards are crucial to correcting our “perceived wisdom” (1 Cor 1-3).

In light of this, Paul in Titus 3:4-7 illustrates what life lived within objective standards and in submission to the Word of God is like (read “the tao” of CS Lewis, “the spring” of Immanual Kant and the “in Christ” of Paul).  It shows us that we are sinners and fall short of God’s perfect plan.  But it also shows us that He saves, forgives and empowers us to grow past the sin nature one step at a time “in Him”.  As Paul says, “God saved me, a sinner, among which I am foremost of all”.  The key to life lived in subjection to the Word is found in the phrase “in Him”.  He and “not me” is the source, the standard and the example for the structure of life.  This concept is expanded in an apologetic and secular sense to truth seekers by CS Lewis in his book The Abolition of Man.

Seeing that spiritual life is the source of joy and purpose and seeing that God through His Holy Spirit grows us in that life, how should we then live in relation to our society? (a great question and also the title of a book by the late Francis Schaffer, a 20th century Christian philosopher and apologist).  By way of summary (the application of which will be the subject of future posts) a believers interaction with society can be characterized by:  1.  In and not of the world, 2.  Salt and light, 3.  Love the person (including ones self in Christ as a Saint who sins and not only a sinner saved by grace type identity), hate the sin, 4.  Remember God is sovereign even when it seems “rashah surrounds tsadik (Habakkuk)”, 5.  Expect persecution and stand firm in love (God’s and ours…see First and Second Peter).  As believers and according to 1 Peter 1, we are “aliens chosen to obey”…

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