When various diseases are going around, we sometimes worry about contracting colds, flus, or other different kinds of viruses and bacterial infections. But have you been “infected” with a false way of thinking? False ideas have consequences as severe, or even more so, than any disease.
In my few short decades on this earth, I’ve seen many faddish, philosophical ideas come and go. Some have been trendy and fleeting, while others have had a great impact on culture and society. What is right, and what is wrong? What is moral, and what is amoral or immoral?
There have been many “isms” one can read about in history, going back to the time of Plato and Socrates, and up through ancient, medieval, renaissance and modern times. There are various Eastern and Western philosophies, national and regional philosophies, and various religious and anti-religious philosophies. Those who study such things have further delineated categories, subcategories, branches and distinctions.
There are way too many isms and philosophies to name. What was once “modern” centuries ago is now relegated to a historical category. And today’s modern ideas will soon be replaced with yet new ideas of the next generation. For every philosophy, you can find an opposing point of view. While some ideas are built on philosophies that preceded them, others dispel earlier ideas as invalid, or at least elementary, immature and outdated.
A thinking person has to conclude that some or many of these ideas, therefore, must be wrong! But as each of these philosophies jelled and emerged into a “value system” taught by proponents, the culture became infected and full blown consequences were later apparent in society.
Unless a person studies philosophy, they may not even know where their own ideas originated. And even if they do, what determines whether the idea is good or bad? Most people absorb the philosophy of the culture they grow up in. It comes subtly from our family, our friends, our teachers and our religion. It comes from the news we hear, the books we read, and the movies we watch. We absorb it from society. Ways of thinking just become a part of us, affecting how we live our lives.
Where did your philosophy and way of thinking originate? Do any of the various and conflicting philosophies have any authority or basis in fact? Aren’t they all just the thoughts of other people? Are they valid just because we have been brought up believing them? When we encounter someone who has opposing views, what makes them wrong and you right?
Pontius Pilate was a prefect of Judaea during the period of Jesus’ ministry and was the judge at Jesus’ trial. Pilate asked Jesus if He was a king. Jesus answered, “‘You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.’ Pilate said to Him, ‘What is truth?’” (John 18:37–38).
What is truth? It is the age-old question. It is the topic of philosophical argument for generation after generation of those who are “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Timothy 3:7). But Jesus boldly declared that He was the way and the truth (John 14:6). And God “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4).
Don’t continue to be infected with false ideas. The truth can be known. Jesus said to the Father, “Your word is truth” (John 17:17). Learn that truth here, with these informative articles: “Where is the Truth?”, “What Happened to the Truth?,” “The Truth Almost No One Knows” and “Act on the Truth!” Or, order your free copy of Do You Believe the True Gospel? today.