I often say that when two people disagree, they can both be wrong but they can’t both be right. In a pluralistic culture such as ours, this truism is ignored. In a pluralistic society it is, in fact, wrong to be right. To believe and proclaim biblical truth, which is always right, is viewed as exclusivist, bigoted and unjust.
Another irony of pluralism is the apparent reversal of two classes of human relationship in terms of their importance.
In Acts 17, Paul points out to the self-important philosophers in Athens that “he [God] made from one man [literally, from “one blood] every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, that they should seek God, in the hope that they might feel their way toward him and find him.” (Acts 17.26,27 ESV) This “one blood” relationship is the foundational human bond, but it is championed by pluralists who ascribe theological validity to biological history. This relationship of all people to one another is deemed to be the highest reason for mutual esteem, rather than our lowest common denominator. What pluralists delete from the equation is the Creator–the One who made us from one blood so that we would seek and find Him!
God says early on in the Bible that the highest human relationship is the “one flesh relationship”, which is to be understood throughout the Scriptures as reserved for marriage and as epitomizing marriage: “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” (Gen 2.24 ESV) To exalt the one-flesh relationship while ignoring its context is to debase it, just as to elevate the one blood relationship while ignoring the Creator is to distort it. Elevation of the “one blood” relationship and debasement of the “one flesh” relationship seem to be inversely proportional in our pluralistic culture.
Paul wraps this up nicely in Romans 1.22-24, where he describes mankind’s abandonment of God as follows: “Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. [Idolatry is perfectly acceptable in a pluralistic setting.] Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, [promiscuity is also perfectly acceptable in a pluralistic setting] to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather that the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.” (ESV)