“Dad I’m serious, I am telling you the truth!”
These are the words one of my children exclaimed as I questioned them the other day. It made me smile as I realized the appeal was challenging me to consider truth.
Is truth even important? Does it matter? Can you know it? Should we be teaching it to our children? If you are a parent you know we do not have to teach our children to lie. It comes naturally as a result of sin and our fallen nature. However, it has been the goal of my wife and I to teach all of our 6 children from a very young age the importance of telling the truth.
But why teach them something that is not even knowable? This is absurd, right? I have been teaching my children the truth of Christianity since they were very young. However, Christianity could not be true if truth is relative or just true for you but not for me. In that case no worldview (including atheism), could be true either. The Bible or any other book could not be true.
I think it was very telling about our culture when Oxford Dictionary declared last year that the word of the year was “post truth”. In essence, to many this means that objective facts are not as important as feelings and emotions. We all have our own “personal” truth. This is certainly not a new concept. The Scripture is full of examples of people desiring to “do what was right in their own eyes”. However, relying on your feeling, experiences, and emotions does not change the facts. Truth is absolute and knowable and it is self-defeating to claim that it isn’t!
I was thinking about truth as I woke up this morning. Do you realize how much we rely on truth constantly in our daily activities? I set my alarm to wake up at a certain time. I drove a familiar route to work. The engine and all the components in my car worked and I arrived safely. I was involved in a morning meeting that had been arranged at a prior time. You get the point.
Think about your doctor appointment? What about when you go to the bank? How about your airplane flight to visit family? We would not be able to function if there were not some standards, a point of reference, or absolute truth! Why should it be any different when it comes to the really important matters of morality, the Bible, or God?
You see I do not believe in Christianity because that is how I was raised. I do not believe in a heaven because I want it to be true. I do not believe the Bible because of some “blind faith”. I believe in these things because they are true. I believe for any honest person that is seeking truth, they will find Christianity to be very persuasive and compelling. It is based on reality, which is a great definition of truth. (I have addressed this is much greater detail on other posts)
So while our culture may say we live in a “post-truth” world, in reality our actions prove every day that truth matters. Deep inside all of us is an awareness that truth exists. I believe that awareness was placed in us by God who gives us a hunger to know truth. It really does matter. I am reminded of the quote by C.S. Lewis,
“…Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.”
In Scripture Pilate asked the all-important question, “What is truth?” The irony is that he was looking at the one who WAS Truth! Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.” Truth was standing right in front of him. The world today desperately needs to hear the message of the gospel. They need to have a personal encounter with the One who claimed to be the Truth. What a privilege to be ambassadors for Christ to represent the truth. May we do it with knowledge, wisdom, and character.
Some may contend that it is arrogant to say you have the truth. Remember this; it is not just your truth or my truth. It is available to everybody. Truth is not invented. It is discovered. It is true whether you believe it or not. The message may offend, however as messengers we should not be offensive in our delivery. A few verses to consider:
- “…Instead, speaking the truth in love.” Ephesians 4:15
- “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32
- “Test all things, hold fast what is good.” 1 Thessalonians 5:21
Parents as you train your children, I encourage you as the Apostle Paul instructed Timothy….” and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”(2 Tim. 3:15)
We should be encouraged when our child tries to convince us by saying, “Dad I’m serious, I am telling you the truth!”
I urge you to consider these truths. But remember, if in fact you disagree, you are actually making a case for truth!
For a more detailed explanation, please visit my website www.maximizeyourlifewithjameswerner.com and go to the “watch” tab. I give a 3 part video message on “What is Truth?”