When Moral Relativism Entered The World

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When Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden, moral relativism entered the world, and has since dominated human nature.

The Fall

Theologians, pastors, seminary professors, they all say – as far as I can tell there’s no upper-level disagreement about this – the Fall was caused by the sin of disobedience. It’s certainly true that Adam and Eve disobeyed Yahweh’s instruction not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, but the sin of pride preceded it and was the source of their disobedience. To paraphrase Solomon, pride went before the Fall (Proverbs 16:18).What Was Garden of Eden Like Before Sin

On the sixth day of creation, God created beings with self-consciousness – human beings. That sense of individuality is unique. No other species possesses it. Animals possess self-protective instincts, but they have no sense of “I.”

To Be Like God

God knew what He was doing and he knew He was taking a risk in creating a being with awareness of self. By doing so, He was creating a being with the potential for self-idolatry – pride. That potential is precisely what the serpent targeted and awakened in Eve. He promised her nothing less than the supreme windfall – her eyes would open and she would become “like God, knowing good and evil” (Genesis 3:5). Once awakened, Eve’s pride took over. She took the serpent’s bait, not because she was fundamentally disobedient, but because she was fundamentally prideful. The serpent fanned her smoldering desire for self-gratification into a raging inferno. Both the Second and Third Commandments forbid idolatry because idolatry is the source of all sin, and the most ubiquitous form of idol worship is worship of self.

Modern Day Pharisees

Disobedience of God – unwillingness to acknowledge and submit to His sovereignty – is the invariable consequence of pride. The individual whose god is himself is not only defiant toward the One, True God, but also in self-righteous denial concerning his or her defiance. The most common form of such denial is atheism. Another form is piousness, which is false obedience to religious legalisms and forms without substance. In the latter case, as with the Pharisees, the individual in question substitutes a public display of works for true submission to God’s will. He may sit next to you in church. He may be the most enthusiastic hand-waver in the congregation during worship songs. He may be teaching your Sunday school class. He may be a deacon, or even your pastor. In any case, he takes every opportunity to make sure everyone knows how observantly “religious” he is.

Right and Wrong

God’s creation is not defined exclusively by tangible things that can be measured – quarks, electrons, protons, photons, atoms, molecules, stars, planets, galaxies, and so on. His creation includes a design for righteous living. The linchpin of that design is proper knowledge of good and evil, including knowledge of the fact that there is no middle ground, no grey area between the two. Every aspect of God’s design for us derives from right knowledge of the demarcation between good and evil, right and wrong, truth and falsehood. Along with quarks, etc., God created knowledge of good and evil. He “owns” that knowledge. The understandings in question can only be obtained through submission to His authority in all things, seen and unseen. Scripture teaches, “The things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Cor 4:18).


In effect, the serpent said to Eve, “The definitions of what is good and true and what is evil and false can belong to you; they can be a matter of your discernment. All that’s required is a choice on your part. Make it, and you will possess the very source of God’s power and authority. He denies you that right; I offer it to you,” so Eve’s pride, awakened by the serpent’s smooth talk, swelled up inside her. It took control of her like a powerful narcotic and she ate and her eyes “opened,” and the snowball of moral relativism has been rolling downhill ever since. Moral relativism is the inevitable result of man believing that he, independent of God, is capable of accurately defining good and evil according to his own understandings (see Proverbs 3:5).

A Relativistic Worldview

Inherent to a relativistic worldview is the proposition that truth is not eternal, unchanging, and of God, but temporal, adaptable, and of man. Within the context of a relativistic worldview, truth becomes a matter of personal taste. Bill has his truth, Sally has hers. Each one, in his own “opened” (pseudo-enlightened) eyes, becomes the final authority on any moral subject. He becomes, as the Greek philosopher Pythagoras triumphantly proclaimed some two thousand years after the Fall, “the measure of all things.” In the 1960’s, the levees maintained by the authority of God’s Word and the weight of tradition burst and relativism flooded every nook and cranny of culture. The infestation began with the notion that understandings of right and wrong, truth and falsehood, were up to each individual or groups of individuals (sects, cults, cultures). Some sixty years later, the relativists demand capitulation to the insane (but inevitable) idea that feelings, not biology, determine a person’s gender. As the new millennium gets underway, it’s only going to get worse.Christians go to Doctor


Twenty-First Century secular-humanist man believes he possesses a natural right to choose. If this so-called “right to choose” is defined in terms of what he is capable of doing, then he is correct, but choices have consequences. It is one thing to choose, it is quite another to choose correctly, and the only correct choices are those that align with God’s design. In other words, one may possess the ability to choose, but one is not ever free to choose. The individual who believes he has a right to choose as he pleases, and that his inner truth trumps God’s truth, is sadly mistaken. Just thinking that one is inherently empowered to determine good and evil is the ultimate expression of pride. It is the core of a satanic, demon-infested, self-idolatrous worldview. It leads, ultimately and invariably, to death. There is only one way. Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).


One does not have to worship Satan to be a Satanist because the serpent is the instigator of moral relativism. Any expression of moral relativism, therefore, is satanic. When eaten by someone who has not submitted the entirety of his life and work to the Lordship of Christ Jesus, the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil is toxic. Immediately upon poisoning themselves, Adam and Eve committed the first act of relativism: they decided that being naked – the condition in which God created them – was not good and they covered themselves. Self-justification is just another form of Satanism. When Yahweh offered Adam and Eve the opportunity to confess their wrongdoing and seek His mercy and grace, they each, in turn, justified what they had done by assigning responsibility elsewhere (see Genesis 3:11 – 13). Adam blamed Eve. Eve blamed the serpent, so at that point, God had no choice but to expel them from His Paradise and force them to be responsible for themselves. He must have done so with the heaviest of hearts.

Modern Psychology

In the 1960’s, America’s psychological community, acting (unwittingly) on the serpent’s behalf, introduced relativism into childrearing. According to the new and very progressive wave of mental health professionals, the knowledge of proper versus improper childrearing was theirs and theirs alone. In order to practice right parenting…the word psychologists invented to distinguish their godless paradigm from what had gone before…parents had to submit to their self-assigned authority. They were told that punishment was bad so children became more and more unruly, defiant, and narcissistic. The motto of the post-1960’s child – a child in danger of never reaching authentic adulthood – is “You can’t tell me what to do!” Encouraging children to express their emotions without restraint was good, psychologists claimed, so children became possessed and driven by their feelings into all manner of emotional dysfunctions. Psychologists claimed that the husband’s traditional authority in the home was bad, so the family became a matriarchy in which “parenting” eclipsed the marriage, hiding it from view. As everything traditionally male was demonized by the mental health professional community, boys began cooperating in their feminization and girls began cooperating in their sexualization.

Denying the Creator

Most of the mental health professions are the most atheistic professions man has ever invented. Every major psychological theorist – Freud, Maslow, Rogers, Skinner, and Gordon – was not simply an atheist, but a prideful and arrogant one. Make no mistake, psychology is not a science; it is a philosophy of man and every psychological theory of human nature denies God. It follows that psychologists do not understand human beings. A right understanding of man cannot be arrived at by someone who divorces man from his Creator and denies the validity of the Creator’s Word. Because its theories of man are lies, and the father of all lies is the serpent, psychology has caused nothing but trouble and tragedy for the American family, marriage, child, school, and community.


Ironically, and tragically, when parents begin experiencing the consequences of adhering to the new psychological parenting up close and personal, children will be driven by their feelings and more likely to turn for help to people who represent the source of the problem. And around and around we go, inexorably downward. That’s the bad news. The Good News is just around the proverbial corner.

Copyright 2020, John K. Rosemond

Here is some related reading for you: Adam and Eve Bible Story Summary

Resource – Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), Crossway Bibles. (2007). ESV: Study Bible: English standard version. Wheaton, Ill: Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Author’s Bio: John Rosemond is a licensed psychologist who believes psychology is a threat to the Christian community. He has written a weekly syndicated column since 1976, twenty best-selling books on childrearing and family issues, and is one of the busiest public speakers in his field. His website is at JohnRosemond.com.

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