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A College Speaker Proves Relativism Doesn't Work

Christian philosopher J.P. Moreland has written about an encounter with a student at the University of Vermont. Moreland was speaking in a dorm when a student told him, "Whatever is true for you is true for you and whatever is true for me is true for me. If something works for you because you believe it, that's great. But no one should force his or her views on other people since everything is relative." As Moreland left, he unplugged the student's stereo and started out the door with it.

The student protested: "Hey, what are you doing? … You can't do that." Moreland replied, "You're not going to force on me the belief that it is wrong to steal your stereo, are you?" He then went on to point out to the student that, when it's convenient, people say they don't care about sexual morality or cheating on exams. But they become moral absolutists in a hurry when someone steals their things or violates their rights. That is, they are selective moral relativists.

Interestingly, a few weeks later this student became a follower of Christ because he recognized the connection between God and human dignity and rights—that God made us in his image. I like to tell churches that this could be a great new evangelistic method called, "Stealing Stereos for Jesus."

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