In 2008, Gary D. Robinson wrote for Breakpoint:
“In the early ‘70s, psychiatrist Karl Menninger wrote a book entitled Whatever Became of Sin? Years after Dr. Menninger’s death, his question still remains. In fact, it’s underlined in black ink and highlighted in yellow marker.” Whatever Happened to Sin? Menninger — and then Robinson — argue that a standard previously recognized by the broader culture — and affirmed by many — is ignored (or at least flaunted).
But, as the idiom goes, that was then. Sin has taken an interesting course: First there was standard A, conventional morality (particularly as to how one dealt with certain biological functions , which although private have a tendency to affect public life).
The morality of standards A was flaunted, mocked, ignored. The attack was along the lines of privacy, personal autonomy, everyone is entitled to his own opinion.
However, the culture did not rest at a libertarian consensus (the supposed end point of the original attack).
Rather, the old mockers became the new Bluenose of the most self-righteous, intolerant type (governmental enforcement, public coercion and even odd, shrill calls for violence). The older mockers have raised their own standard, B. Among its many provisions is the contention that anyone holds standard A is a transgressor of morality.
“100 years ago the surefire way for a Christian to be viewed as immoral was for him or her to engage in pre-marital or extra-marital sex. Now it appears that the opposite is the case.
“Yesterday the New South Wales Greens called for the state Government to ban certain books from being used in Scripture classes in that state, a demand to which the education board duly obliged. You can read The Greens statement here.” The new immorality
A similar observation was made in the Wall Street Journal. As Albert Mohler writes:
“Finally, just a few days ago Charlotte Allen wrote the houses of worship article for the Wall Street Journal and it has a very interesting headline all to its own: Modern Sin: Holding Onto Your Beliefs. She writes that the way to sin, in terms of contemporary postmodern American culture, is to hold onto religious convictions – at least any religious convictions that are tied to what the Christian church has taught for 2000 years and what is revealed in Scripture. ” The Brief, May 6, 2015
It is interesting that Paul’s very strong affirmation of Scripture’s supernatural basis was made in the context of discussing the broader culture’s persecution of those who hold to a different standard:
10 You, however, have followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, my steadfastness, 11 my persecutions and sufferings that happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, and at Lystra-which persecutions I endured; yet from them all the Lord rescued me. 12 Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 13 while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it 15 and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:10-17
If Scripture has no supernatural authority it would be rank foolishness to suffer for an opinion. But if Scripture is True Truth (as Schaeffer put it), if it is a command of God, then one has no choice. It will take such a certain knowledge to adhere to Scripture, when merely naming sin has become sin.