Thus the distinction between truth and errors is amplified clearly: straight and narrow and singular is that way which leads to everlasting life, that way which is encompassed in the teaching of Christ and the apostles; and on the contrary: broad and many are those ways which lead to everlasting misery, those ways which are proposed by false teachers and prophets.
This is all very important for our day, because the age in which we live is one of ‘pluralism’; which is to say, there are more truths than one truth; or to state the same negatively: there is no singular, perfect, harmonious unit of truth; or, to rephrase the same but in a more personal context (as it is usually heard today): ‘no one can lay claim to knowing the truth, especially if that truth says every other belief system is wrong’; i.e. no one today can claim what the New Testament writers claimed two-thousand years ago about the truth of Christianity. So prevalent is this idea in our society, that anyone who does believe in one substantial, objective system of truth - regardless of his world-view or religion - is seen to be ignorant, intolerant, and arrogant. The greater part of our post-modern society likes to believe in subjective truth, or a ‘plurality’ of truths; and even if they do not and can not consistently practice their profession, they will proclaim it till they die.
Perhaps this is no more clearly expressed than in the discussion about ‘religious tolerance’, where the irreligious obstinately insist that those who do have religious beliefs hold them less firmly, and be more accommodating of other peoples’ religious beliefs. Once upon a time, ‘tolerance’ was generally defined thus: whilst a person held strong views, they insisted that others had the right to dissent from those views and argue their own case. There was a threefold assumption under this old view of tolerance: 1) Objective truth is out there, and it is our duty to pursue that truth. 2) The various parties in a dispute think that they know what the truth of the matter is. 3) Nevertheless, they believe that the best chance of uncovering the truth of the matter is by the unhindered exchange of ideas; regardless of how wrong those ideas seem to other parties. Perhaps this was best summarised by Voltaire, who famously said, ‘I do not agree with a word that you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it’.