How do you teach youngsters about truth in a culture that says there is no truth? It's not easy—as I know from experience.

Over recent months, I've taught worldview to groups of bright young students. With each group, I had the same distressing experience. When I presented a classic example of a self-refuting moral proposition, they just didn't get it.

An example: The late Christopher Reeve, in his wheelchair with a breathing tube, was testifying before a Senate committee. Reeve dismissed moral objections to embryonic stem-cell research, claiming that the purpose of government is "to serve the greatest good for the greatest number."

I then asked the students, "What's wrong with this picture?" When I got no answers I dropped heavy hints. Only one student gave the correct answer: If what Reeve advocated actually were our governing philosophy, he would not have been there to testify. Who would spend millions to keep him alive when that money could help thousands?

I don't know whether the students lacked analytical skills or were just confused, but when I explained the inherent contradiction, the lights went on. When I discussed the concept of absolute truth, and the fact that it is knowable, there was an occasional nod of understanding, but it was clear I was breaking new ground. These students, mind you, were products of Christian homes and schools.

This lack of worldview awareness is appalling—but it's exactly what George Barna has found in his recent polls: Just 9 percent of evangelical students believe in anything called absolute truth. What does this say about the job our schools, our families, and our churches are doing?

Let's tackle the schools first. Many Christians—like Prison Fellowship president Mark Earley, ...

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Charles Colson
Charles Colson was the founder of Prison Fellowship Ministries, an outreach to convicts, victims of crime, and justice officers. Colson, who converted to Christianity before he was indicted on Watergate-related charges, became one of evangelicalism's most influential voices. His books included Born Again and How Now Shall We Live? A Christianity Today columnist since 1985, Colson died in 2012.
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