Friday, February 25, 2011
WAXING PHILOSOPHICAL AND WALKING IN TRUTH
"I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." [111 John verse 4.]
It goes without saying that walking according to what is truth is important. But where do you find the truth? Truth, as I'm using it here, [There are at least nine legitimate definitions in the English language.] would be best thought of as a statement that describes reality. Whether a statement is referring to something that exists or something that has happened or even the truth about an idea, that statement must correspond to reality for it to be truth according to my definition.
It is a simple fact that the purpose and value of truthful statements is that they are intended to reveal reality. An inaccurate statement is false, not truth, and would lead one away from any comprehension of what is reality. But truth, by definition, is an accurate statement that describes what is actual reality.
It is also important to remember that truth is NOT the reality itself. It is simply an accurate statement of the reality. So you can see I'm making a distinction between "truth" and "reality."
Does the world in which we live present us with reality? There are various voices in the world that are making statements which claim to be declaring truth about what is real. But are they truthful? Should we believe them? Are those human voices making statements accurately presenting reality in this world in which we live? I think not!!
My reasoning is based on the simple fact that none of them were there when it all started and the only knowledge any one person can have of reality is what they have by virtue of simply being a human being. That means they know only what they have experienced through their encounters with the world as they have gathered data, sought it's meaning, and assumed a conclusion. That is limited from the outset.
Then, add to that the fact that their own motivations, biases, and other things of a personal nature, highly influence their understanding regarding the reality of the world they've encountered. So one must conclude, it seems to me, that all human sources for truth are limited in scope and highly subjective. Knowing this makes it vividly clear, to me at least, why fallen humanity has produced only self-centered false statements while trying to describe a reality that that winds up being totally inaccurate at the very best.
I read where someone said.."Like the Matrix, in the movie by that name, sin has created a virtual reality for our world to live in. But it does not describe the reality which God created." That says it all when speaking about human ideas of reality in my judgment. We wind up as the scripture puts it.."The blind leading the blind."
Well, if human sources for truth are subjective and unreliable, creating a virtual reality about this world, where does one find a RELIABLE truth? This is the reason I personally believe the Bible to be worthy of consideration as a source of truth concerning reality. If it is, as I believe it to be, God’s Word, then we have a source of truth that is from the Creator Himself.
Who better would know what this world is like than the One who was there at it's making? And should He chose to reveal truth in the scriptures, [Which are His statements about His Son and how life relates in reality to Him.] it would be, for me, a needed and reliable source of truth about reality.
However, I do believe God has warned us as to the nature of His truth about reality and it is not something that is easy for us to comprehend. After all, our minds have been programmed by the world’s view of reality since birth, and when we are convinced that what we've heard from the world is truth, it’s hard to consider it to be, in fact, lies. You see the problem.
Here's how God Himself says it. “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Neither are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isa. 55:9)
To understand this verse it would be helpful, as I once read, to think of the thoughts of a people as being the source of their values and the ways of a people as being the methods by which they implement those values. It could be said then that the sum total of values and methods make up the given culture of a people.
Accepting this concept, what God is saying in the above quoted verse is that He has a totally different culture (values and methods) than that of human beings and it's radically different from any culture you will EVER find in this world. Our hope as fallen humanity is in recognizing there is a Kingdom culture that exists that is beyond our comprehension until we hear, understand, and embrace the truth from God as stated in the reality of Jesus Christ, His Only Begotten Son.
When Kingdom people begin to see this, our minds will give up on the world's understanding of how to live life and embrace the truth from God about it all. Gone will be slick management skills, psychological ploys and financial techniques that are said to really be the way to experience life and what will arise will be a biblical wisdom that will radically change the way we relate to even our enemies, much less each other. This will enable God's people to be a radical people of "The Way" in REALITY instead of just another variation of the cultures of the world. It's called Real Christianity.
So you can see that once we've given up on the truth of the world and decide to walk according to God’s truth, we will discover and personally encounter a biblical description of reality that is vastly different from the reality being described by Man’s truth. It is that kind of truthful thinking that will lead to TRANSFORMED lives as opposed to just another religious belief system that occupies the minds of fallen human beings and creates a set of values and methods that are really simply a variation of other religious groups.
It is not easy to walk by God’s truth because it is so different from this world’s truth. It centers on that One Person that transforms every thing and every one He genuinely touches in reality. For the one walking in this truth it gives place to a grace-filled servanthood that is hilariously free of a fear of death and is, at the same time, seriously committed to the living of life to it's very fullest. That life is characterized by a love that defies logic and crosses every established boundary of fallen man.
To then love the world would be to miss reality and this they will not do. This chosen submissive way of thinking about His statements concerning REALITY will bring about a lifestyle that was intended from the very beginning for mankind.
We will delight the Father because of the truth of His Son who is real to us and we WILL, in reality, walk in that truth.