Friday, February 20, 2009

“Truth is truth wherever you find it.”

Other versions of this adage are “All truth is God’s truth,” “Despoil the Egyptians” meaning make something good out of the bad; “Eat the meat and spit out the bones,” meaning that one should hold on to the good but leave the bad parts behind; or “God can speak to me through anything.” A guy in my Christian youth group claimed, “God can even speak to me through a Satanist bible.” I wish I’d thought quickly enough to respond, “Right, and he’d say, ‘Put that down!” (I guess it should be no surprise since he dated a witch and hung out with Rosicrucians.)

But the apostle John said, “no lie comes from the truth”. (1 John 2:21) So how could the truth come from a lie? Jesus, in his warning about false prophets, said, “a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.” (Matthew 7:17) He added that people don’t pick grapes from thorn bushes. (Matthew 7:16)

Too many Christians are looking for truth “in all the wrong places”, in thorn bushes instead of looking to Jesus who is “the way and the Truth and the life”. (John 14:5) Why waste time on the false when you can go straight to genuine? (This is not to say that we shouldn’t know what’s going on. I’ll cover this part in another listing.)

Part of the problem is their definition of “truth”, which comes out something like, “whatever works”. Lots of lies “work”—for a time; ask the Roman Emperors, Hitler, even former President Nixon. What they did “worked” for a time but that doesn’t mean they were operating in truth! Jesus spelled out the way to know the truth, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." (John 8:31,32) How much better to be set free than to choke on bones!