What Is Your Standard?

by Doy Moyer

What is your standard of what is true? How do you determine what is good?

Remove God from any answer and what will you have? Personal preferences? Whatever society says? Human experience? What other options are there?

Once God is taken out of the answers, no other standard suffices to provide us with what is universally true, good, or beautiful. Personal preferences provide no standard for anyone but self. We might as well debate the favored flavor of ice cream. What society says is in constant flux, and often one culture has generally accepted what others would consider to be immoral practices. Why are they wrong? There is no standard there. And human experience? Once we allow human experience to be a standard of what is true and good, just about anything will go, for human experience includes the most perverse evils conceived along with those who would defend the evils. Why shouldn’t they be allowed, too? None of these give us any standards outside of ourselves, and we are miserable makers of definitive rules. You can disagree if you wish, but what standard will you use to make your case? What if I reject your standard? Why would it matter?

Removing God from the answers leaves us lurching for something solid to grasp, and we aren’t finding it. We are trying to feel our way through a darkness that has no hope of light. This is why Paul’s point in Acts 17 is significant. We are reaching for something, but what is it? Paul argues that God made humanity “that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us, for ‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are indeed his offspring’” (Acts 17:27-28).

We innately reach for God. Denying Him is pointless. The true, the good, and the beautiful find their answers in Him. With God, the standard does not come from within corrupted humanity, but from the outside. Only God has the wisdom, knowledge, and understanding to provide what is universally needed because only He stands above the creation and sees the total picture of reality. Truth, goodness, and beauty are grounded in who God is. These are not arbitrarily imposed preferences coming from corrupted, finite, ignorant people. Our worldview matters because it says something vital about the standards we choose to accept and reject.


What is your standard of what is true? How do you determine what is good?

Print Friendly, PDF & Email