Confronting The Myth Of Neutrality
People love to pretend.
We love to pretend that we can be good without God.
Because pretending to have the ability to be good apart from God helps us to pretend that we can rightly understand and pursue things like law, art, politics, economics, and education apart from God.
Which all helps us to pretend that we are God in practice.
It’s from this presumed God-like position that we conjure up things like neutrality – the notion that one can assess the most basic elements of reality from a purely neutral position.
It’s from this imagined place of neutrality that we then pretend to judge things – all things – by a process of evaluation based on…well…something other than neutrality.
We use standards. We appeal to foundations. Specific foundations and specific standards. Foundations and standards that are defined and distinct.
Which is another way of saying non-neutral foundations and standards.
These are our presuppositions.
We all have ’em.
Nobody starts building from nothing. Nothing can be built from nothing. Everything within creation has to be built from something.
So it is that the notion of true neutrality existing anywhere in God’s creation is just plain dumb.
Yet it’s all the rage.
Like I said, we love to pretend.
Even so, here in the real world, there is no neutral position from which to begin on any subject in God’s creation. Such a place, if it could exist (which it cannot) would quite literally be nothingness, and nothingness, as we’ve already touched on, isn’t really a place from which one can progress without appealing to something that is something, which is another way of saying something that is defined and knowable, which is another way of saying something that is non-neutral.
Just getting this fact down is what’s known in deep theological terms as “a biggie.”
Anyone with an opinion on anything – including the nature of truth, morality, logic or anything else – must begin to form that opinion by appealing to non-neutral presuppositions. Once we understand this, we have taken an early, critical step toward rightly assessing how all thought and knowledge is to be perceived and pursued as a reflection of God’s Nature in His creation.
It’s all His property. Every bit of it.
Philosophy, logic, mathematics, economics, law, art…everything is His. It is all defined and sustained by Him personally (see: Colossians 1:15-20).
In this light, we see that every thought is a theological thought and every action is a theologically inspired action.
Every political, educational, artistic, and economic thought and action that we pursue is our way of expressing our understanding of who God is personally as that thought or action relates to His creation of politics, education, art, and economics. Man’s contrivance of neutrality is just another lame attempt at working around this fundamental truth.
Once we understand that neutrality is a lie (a lie first promoted by the serpent in Eden – see: Genesis 3), we are in a much better place to understand why confronting the lie of neutrality is a basic (and essential) aspect of the Gospel-fueled Great Commission.
The proclamation of neutrality in law, art, economics, or any other realm of God’s creation is nothing better than an acute expression of what Scripture describes again and again as foolishness – a foolishness that destroys lives, families, cultures, and civilizations when pursued to its logical end.
Along these lines, in an earlier post (Swiss Cheesiness: The Myth of Neutrality), we elaborated on the foolishness of one commonly held “neutral” position of the day – the “there are no absolutes” line:
. . . Our autonomy worshiping pop culture, as an unintended witness to its intellectual vapidity, is routinely about the business of rolling out mind-numbingly stupid proclamations of what it imagines to be profound “truth”.
Take Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi, for example. In Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, Obi-Wan, when addressed by his nemesis, a sharp dressing up-and-comer named Darth Vader, with the proclamation that those who are “not with me are against me”, responded with this colossal gem of oxymoronic idiocy: “Only the Sith deal in absolutes.”
For those of you not up to speed on Star Wars lore, “the Sith” of which Obi-Wan spoke are the baddest of the bad guys in Star Wars land – the embodiment of evil. And, apparently, only they deal in absolutes.
Whether Kenobi even realized that his response could be taken as his way of coming out as a Sith or not is a discussion for another time. Assuming that the intent of Obi-Wan’s comeback was not to proclaim his heretofore secret Sithiness, he then indeed made a glaringly self-contradicting statement – a pronouncement that, by the time it finishes rolling out of one’s mouth, has already disproven the point it was trying to make in the first place. This, in strict linguistic terms, is known as “really dumb.”
Professing atheists tend to do this kind of thing all the time.
‘Cause they have to.
It’s all they’ve got.
“There are no absolutes!” is the never-ending nonsensical battle cry of many of those whom Scripture describes as willful idiots, or “fools”. So entranced are these fools by the pursuit of autonomous rule over their lives that they are blinded from noticing even the most egregious of logical bloopers as they roll one after another after another off their tongues and out of their mouths…again and again as unintended acknowledgments of their intellectual vacancy and foolishness.
The myth of neutrality is one of the most cherished myths of the fool who says in his heart that “there is no God” (Psalm 14:1). It should not be the least little bit surprising then that this myth is easily exposed as fiction by the light of Scripture. Our aim as believers is to embrace the Scripture’s proclamation on this matter and never let it go – never surrender this fact, even in the face of the loudest, boldest, most passionate proclamations of protestation emanating from…the fool who hates the God that they know.
If we love the fool, that Precious Snowflake, we will not play his game. We will not agree with his biblically impossible-to-believe claim. We will not surrender the authority of the crystal clear Word of God in order to somehow then inch the unbeliever towards belief in the authority of that same Word. Such an approach would be every bit as idiotic as the Obi-Wan quote mentioned earlier, and we don’t wanna go there, do we?
Remember this: The myth of neutrality is just a tool invented out of necessity for the sake of propping up the tragi-comedic (yet still quite destructive) zombie that is the myth of autonomy. Man loves to prop up one delusion with another. We love to play with law, art, business and the like as though we own or invented the things. But we didn’t.
They’re all God’s.
They’re all defined and sustained by His Nature.
As such, there is no neutrality in any area of life or realm of His creation…and we shouldn’t want it any other way.
Article reposted with permission from Fire Breathing Christian. Article by Scott Buss.