Truth In A "Post-Truth" WorldJon Burgess
These are the things you are to teach and insist on. 3If anyone teaches otherwise and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, 4they are conceited and understand nothing. They have an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions 5and constant friction between people of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain.
1 Timothy 5:2-5
It turns out there really is nothing new under the sun. As Paul is describing the "unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels" I couldn't help but think about our 21st Century 24 hour news cycle who's primary driver of traffic fits that exact description! Sadly, just as in Timothy's day, these words filled with envy, strife, malice and suspicion is not limited to those who don't know Jesus. Paul is descrbing ministers of God's Word, followers of Jesus, at least word if not in deed, who are dividing the church for their own self-gain. They are stirring up and playing upon the emotions of those in the churches they visit. It's why Paul insists that Timothy not get caught up in this "post-truth" fueled by emotion but instead camps out and lives in The Truth founded in Christ!
After a year of highly charged political, social and religious conversation in our nation it's no surprise that the word “post-truth” has been named as Oxford Dictionaries’ word of the year. Usage of the adjective, which describes circumstances where emotions and personal beliefs are more influential than facts, increased by around 2,000 percent since last year, research showed. This tendency to change our stance on truth based on what is popular or what we are feeling at the moment isn't new to us, it's just increasing at a rapid rate. It's never been more important to know The Truth who is the person of Jesus Christ because He does not change. The Truth has written the truth in Scripture which does not change regardless of what we are feeling or people are believing at any given time. Pastor Wayne Cordeiro has often warned of the danger of making a permament decision based on a temporary emotion. The beauty and power of even this moment right here in my daily reading, journaling and praying is that I am filtering my decisions in truth. In a post-truth world my emotions, feelings and bias can't get past the truth of God's Word and The Truth- Jesus Christ. Instead of "post-truth" or "my truth" or some subjective shifting based on current cultural mood, I am permanently and consistently rooted in the unchanging truth of Christ! What a solid place to be and shaky world!
All "unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions" must bow at the feet the One who reigns. You can't get "post" or "past" The Truth that was here long before the world existed and will be here long after it's gone! I pray that I would continue to stay focused on Your Truth and not get caught up or distracted by the divisive controversies and conversations going on all around me! In a world where "post-truth" is on the rise I pray that Your church would be a raise the Truth of Jesus Christ!