Enlightenment thinkers declared the death of the Triune God and elevated man's reason and nature to the throne of God. The naturalistic worldview denies that man is a living soul created in the spiritual image of God. It reduces man to an aggregate of atoms while simultaneously reducing his mind (spirit) to chemical interactions and firing of synapses. In short, man is nothing but an evolved animal. Though the godless children of the Enlightenment view themselves as faultless, in reality their conscience is depraved, and a depraved conscience is the most destructive force in political, social, economic, and cultural life. This is because though the intellect remains intact, reason is warped and peculiarly inverted, thus useless for pursuit of the good, the just and the true. In short, guided by a depraved conscience, reason is used in pursuit of the preservation of self-image at any cost. This is sophistry.
The disintegration of man's dignity as a creature of God is the product of a depraved conscience that justifies the depersonalization and abuse of others as the exercise of freedom. It is hostility disguised behind linguistic sophistry.
In a penetrating analysis of sophistry, J. Budziszewski observes that the sophists' view of reality is paradoxical because it ultimately denies reality. Sophists are shock troopers of evil says Budziszewski, and according to their satanically-inverted view of reality:
"Man is the measure of all things, but man has no fixed nature. Man measures all things by his words, but words have no fixed meanings. Language is not an instrument for finding truth, but for changing it. Those who can master it, master all. It is a good creed for rogues, and commends itself to tyrants in every age." (What We Can't Not Know, Budziszewski, p. 167)
Fashionable among today's "intellectual" shock troopers of evil are two Enlightenment "thinkers," the Marquis de Sade and the German philosopher Frederich Nietzsche, who called himself the antichrist and declared the death of God.
The Marquis however, declared the death of God long before Nietzsche. De Sade was a logical Enlightenment thinker who took his humanistic rejection of God the Father to its logical conclusion. De Sade was a thoroughly reprobate man who absolutely refused to consider his perverse ideas and actions as in any way wrong. Rather he brazenly defended his bestiality, sadism and murder as moral, and he redefined both God and Christian morality as truly evil. De Sade was both intellectually and morally insane. He was an evil sophist who whipped up moral outrage against God and His Law and relished his self-appointed role as His accuser.
De Sade saw the world in a more consistently man centered perspective than others of his time and lived life accordingly. Having denied God, de Sade logically denied the fall and sin. Thus he denied any need for limitations on the appetites of animalistic men. Whatever they saw and desired was absolutely permissable. Consistent with his naturalistic worldview was the repudiation of the idea of crime, which de Sade regarded as an imposition on animalistic man's freedom. The criminal said de Sade, is the truly free man.
In the naturalistic world, de Sade saw everything natural as normative. Whatever the Bible declared fallen and depraved, de Sade proclaimed ideal. Hence sodomy is normal, good and entirely permissable while dissent against sodomy is evil and not permissable.
Pornography, incest, pedophilia, sodomy, bestiality (animalism), rape, lying, thievery, thuggery, vandalism, violence and murder are justified by the naturalistic worldview, which has freed man from God and His Law. The real horror of the naturalistic worldview is its positive declaration of this "new" moral ethic, which we commonly think of as political correctness with its' two overriding absolutes, "tolerance" and "inclusion." Thus today the brazenly, shamelessly perverse claim the "politically correct" moral high ground and point an accusing finger at Biblical ethics and the Christians who hold fast to them.
De Sade was a forerunner of all shock troopers of evil who today demand total freedom for everything except Christianity, a policy now well-entrenched in the American psyche, and as a consequence, in schools, courts, legislators, city halls, statehouses, and even pulpits. In other words,the self-worshipping iniquitous.... witches, goddesses, shamans, "gays," abortionists, earth worshippers, cheats, etc. hold the high moral ground from where they launch satanically-inverted accusations such as intolerance, hate, homophobia, racism, and bigotry against the decent, straight and law-abiding.
To be found guilty of homophobia is to be guilty of not being bent while to be guilty of intolerance is to be guilty of holding fast to God's unchanging truths, moral law and created structures, such as the two sexes, male and female. This is sophistry, and we need to recognize and stand fast against it and not fall victim to its wiles.
Southern Baptist Convention president Rev. Bryant Wright provides us with a great example of courageously "standing fast" against the wiles of sophists. In the face of a pro-gay coalitions' demand for an apology from Southern Baptists for what the group describes as "damage" resulting from the denomination's scriptural teachings on homosexuality, Rev. Wright told them there is no "common ground" between the two groups on the issue of sexual purity. On the other hand, Rev. Albert Mohler, the president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary displayed a lack of good judgement when he called on Southern Baptists to repent for a "form of homophobia" that has condemned homosexuals instead of embracing them as fellow sinners. Though Rev. Mohler's heart is in the right place, his borrowing of the lingustic sophism, "homophobia," shows a lack of discernment. To call for repentance on the basis of homophobia is to call for Christians to repent of being straight rather than bent. To accept guilt for homophobia, a man-invented morality, is to throw the door wide to other accusations of satanically-inverted guilt and their subsequent demands of conformity to perversion.
(source: Seminary President: Baptists Have Been Homophobic http://www.onenewsnow.com/Church/Default.aspx?id=1371676 )
Whether it calls itself secularism, post-modernism, liberation theology, Marxism, the sexual revolution, or New Age, naturalism is revamped, re-invented paganism. It is idolatry of self, that is, pride of mind and pride of flesh.
Naturalism cannot be dealt with in isolation from its concomitant worldview, one that seeks not simply to excuse rebellion against God the Father, but to defend it as true freedom. To reject Biblical theism is to reject Biblical ethics and created structures resulting in accusations such as homophobia.
Modern humanists are just now arriving at the more consistent worldview of de Sade and proactively imprinting it upon our culture, with special emphasis upon our children. De Sades bestial worldview is coming to fullness within American culture. It is a part of our educational system, our laws, our courts, the arts, and entertainment. Even some neighborhood grocery stores are now promoting de Sade's bestial worldview under the rubric of "gay pride."
We cannot stop the naturalistic worldview merely by opposing it. The worldview that justifies evil and demands the right to debase, pollute, and depersonalize must be opposed by its sole antithesis, the Biblical worldview.
The modern faith in man-as-god and the ultimacy of his base urges must be countered with the Word of God as the Sovereign dispenser of law and grace. The naturalistic worldview is consistently suicidal and pulls its' followers down into the abyss. The gospel of Jesus Christ however, opens up a supernatural worldview that offers ultimate meaning, hope, and purpose.
Fundamentally, there are only two choices before all men: hope or despair, life or death, the Kingdom of God or the kingdom of bestial man.
Resource: "Noble Savages," R.J. Rushdoony