Perhaps the greatest irony of our present age is the absolute moralism of a culture which rails against institutionalized morality. “Don’t force your morality on me” is often uttered in complete sincerity and without a hint of irony.
Increasingly in our contemporary world, this commitment to the morality of moral relativism is becoming manifest in the church. And as has always been the case, there’s “no Catholic like a convert.” One can often see in the language of these converts to the new morality of the West all the righteousness of the raging prophets, dealing out the fiery judgment of God against those who would dare to “judge others.” This desire to raise ourselves above others—to present ourselves as righteous crusaders for God’s cause—is not new; in fact it is ancient, maybe the oldest impulse of humanity. But it can be terribly destructive, and it is symptomatic of a deeper problem: the desire for self-justification (usually in comparison to others, maximizing their “faults” while minimizing our own) is the full expression of a lack of trust in the goodness of God.