Con’s Coffee Corner
Why do coffee shop baristas say they “pull” espresso shots? The term comes from the early espresso machines that required the barista to pull down a lever to pour the shot.
I remember discussion I had with a young man a number of years ago at a wellness fair held in the Fleetwood Community Centre. Our church had been invited to have a booth at this annual event. The “religious event”—I mean wellness fair had a plethora of “scientific” booths including a few representing New Age pluralism, taro card readers, and astrologists etc. He came to our booth and we soon got into a discussion about truth. I asked him if he believed in the existence of One supreme God who is the absolute truth. He responded with an answer I have heard many times from today’s spiritually interested and yet very confused generation. He said, “That truth may be fine for you and I am so glad that this truth works for you, but I hold to a different truth.” I responded to him by asking him if he believed in many contradicting truths is absolute to Him? He seemed in a hurry to leave and it ended as most conversations do in today’s non-reasoning society. “He said I have my own belief and I don’t appreciate you challenging it".
The definition of truth is different for everyone.” Is it? Does he really believe this with all his heart? Would he be willing to die for that kind of truth? Would he want a court of law to use that kind of truth when he wants justice for being wronged?
In the last entry I talked about absolute truth as being seen in the very essence of God who actually called Himself “The Truth.” I concluded that as much as the world wants absolute truth and justice, it does not want God to be the judge when it comes to defining truth and delivering justice. It has become more evident in this last decade or so, that the world wants to define truth and justice on its own terms. The world believes that it is now morally superior to God in all it’s understanding of truth, evil and the dispensing of justice. What the world really wants is to be gods and decide for themselves what is truth, what is a lie, and to create its own definition of what is evil and righteous. In fact just because something is good does not mean it is the truth or is from God. False religions that worship man made false gods do some good things but they are still false beliefs. The world continues to define sin, evil, truth and lies in their own relative terms rather than God’s absolute terms because it is human nature not to ever condemn ones self. Relative truth allows humanity to choose when to use its version of truth, where this version of truth is to be dispensed and what definition of truth they will use for the situation as hand. This self-creation of relative truth becomes a confused smorgasbord of lies smothered in a sweet cream of an a-moral society. Therefore their indecision of absolutes becomes their ultimate decision--that God does not exist and therefore absolute truth does not exist. Self-worship becomes the new worldview.
The result is that everything we deem as truth is now the truth. The problem with this is that this argument has now become circular. If humanity becomes the judge of what is truth and what is not, they will choose that all claims and beliefs are equally true. The meaning of the word “truth” is now gone and what do you have left? LIES.
So this led me to ask the question, does the world even want know the truth so that they can be god and ultimately decide for themselves what is truth and what is not? We have seen that if we leave the definition of truth to humanity who is imperfect and mortal, one can be certain that they will not be absolute. Thus, the new politically correct “truth police” will judge Christianity to be just one of many truths in the world. Yet is this ever possible for Christianity to be one of many truths? The problem with this thought is that it is illogical. Why? Because the Christian belief has as it’s very core the understanding that there are no alternatives to the truth. The word “truth” exists in the very essence of who God is. Without God there can be no absolute truth.
In one of my favorite books entitled “The Gagging of God”-by D.A Carson describes why for Christianity there can be no other alternative other than to be to exclusive. He says, “In the past, God spoke: He has always been a talking God. But in these last days—the eschatological framework is inescapable—His final “Word” as it were, is His Son, Jesus Christ. If this is true, to ignore Him or treat Him as one option among many is to defy God our maker and judge. And one day we shall give an account to Him. If it is not true, than there is no value in claiming Christian allegiance at all. The whole is a sham, not one among many. In the light of such texts, there is no third option.” (Pg. 345)
As I pondered this thought, I came to the conclusion that if the Gospel of Jesus Christ is not the truth, then truth will never be found because then God does not exist. In this state, to exist in a world without God would be to live in a world of lies and humanity would exist in self-servitude. Without the existence of God (Truth) humanity would be gods and would do what is right in our own eyes. Therefore the further we are from a relationship with God through Jesus; the less truth will exist in our day-to-day lives. In fact our choice to live life apart from God results in an entire worldview governed by lies because there exists no partial truths. A society governed by the absence of truth (lies) will quickly become chaotic and result in a totalitarian government. Society will have to resort to the law of “might is right” in order to sustain some form of civility. When society has abandoned God they have also abandoned a standard or basis for absolute truth. If there is no absolute standard for individual or societal behavior the definition of truth will be lost and there will be no need for the rule of law. The teaching of absolute truth must exist in order for humanities structure of the law to have any effect. So far, much of our law has its fundamentals based on the existence of God’s Biblical absolutes. When one testifies as a witness they are asked to swear to “tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.” In other words, this oath is a statement that the truth is to be absolute not relative. If the judge were to make his/her decision based on a so-called “relative truth” no one would ever discover absolute truth. I don’t know anyone that would want the judge to say that everyone is in someway guilty and that everyone is in some way telling the truth. If we were falsely accused of stealing we would want the judge to find the absolute truth that we were innocent and that we told the truth. If the law was based on relative truth there would no longer be anything left to judge.
This week I came across this fabulous quote from the founder of Tentmaker Ministries, Gary Amirault, ”The Truth is not a religion, the correct denomination, the teachings of some great man or woman, a body of knowledge, the "right" book, a deep philosophy, the correct concept or a set of laws or governing principles. It can never be ascertained through the "scientific method," logic or reasoning. All these are instruments that fall far short of being able to fathom "the Truth."
The Truth is a person who can only be known through a deep, intimate personal relationship in covenant. Covenant is an exchange of lives. You will NEVER know the truth until "The Truth" becomes your life and your life becomes His. Truth requires absolute, total surrender to the Son of God. It is an exchange of life in the most intimate way in the universe. It is a marriage of souls. It is a bond that sets free. It is a paradox. And when you enter this paradox, you will be free indeed AND you will then also know True LOVE." From this I have concluded that most of our world can’t handle the truth and in fact does not want to know the truth, which it so desperately needs---absolutely!