That about sums up the view of mankind working through Western society for the past few centuries. Charles Taylor says that the “Modern Moral Order”
“…starts with individuals, and doesn’t see these as set a priori within a hierarchical order, outside of which they wouldn’t be fully human agents. Its members are not agents who are essentially embedded within a society which in turn reflects and connects with the cosmos, but rather disembedded individuals who come to associate together. The design underlying the association is that each, in pursuing his or her own purposes in life, act to benefit others mutually. It calls for a society structured for mutual benefit, in which each respects the rights of others, and offers them mutual help of certain kinds” (A Secular Age [Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2007], 447).
The gospel changes all of that.