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Thursday, November 15, 2007

Light & Truth

What is your moral compass and where did you get it? How do I know right from wrong, good from evil - or are those even legitimate categories? The prevailing current wisdom of popular philosophy subscribes to Postmodern thought; which would have me choose to believe (notice the word believe) that there is no absolute truth, and that all truth is subjective to ones experiences. While there is an element of truth in this idea (as there always is an element of truth in the most believable lies) this is a ridiculous claim, which is obviously hypocritical in nature, and easily refuted. After all, if my heart stops beating, I will obviously die; if I close my eyes, I cannot see; etc. The element of truth in the idea of postmodernism is simply the observation that there will always be many different perspectives; and where postmodernism falls short is in its blindness to the truth which bias perspectives can often hide or camoflage. Nevertheless, the conclusion of postmodernism is very troubleing as well: if there is no absolute/objective truth, then society is doomed to deteriorate into a culture ruled by the lowest common denominator.

Thankfully there is hope. In God's Word, the Holy Bible, He gives us not only commandments and decrees for how to live a holy and righteous life, but an instrument and tool for guidance, understanding, refining, and encouragement. Wether one is a believer in Christ or an unbeliever, all can confess that the law of right and wrong, the "natural law" if you will, is written on our hearts. We know it is wrong to murder, to lie, and to steal, without needing to be told. My favorite passage in the Bible discussing the reality of God, the natural law, the revelation of God's existence through His creation, and manking's present state of rebellion to the law, can be found in Romans 1:16-2:29. I especially like the puritan writer Matthew Henry's commentary on this passage. To view it click here.

I was re-reading the second book within Mere Christianity by CS Lewis last night. I read Mere Christianity for the first time a few years ago and have re-read bits and pieces of it many times since. You can get the book at any online bookstore, or follow this link to one I would recommend. Within the first chapter of Book two, titled "The Rival Conceptions of God", Lewis makes this statement: "A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line... just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark. Dark would be a word without meaning." For all Christians the Word of God is our straight line, the light which illuminates our hearts both revealing our selfishness and guiding us towards righteousness.

In God's Word, specficially the epistle written to the Hebrews, chapter 4 verse 12 we find, "For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart." For a full examination of this text and commentaries from Spurgeon, MacArthur, and Piper, please follow this link.

The reason for utilizing Hebrews 4:12 here is simply to point out how God's written Word interacts with us as His creation. What does it mean that God's Word is living and active? It means that God's Word, like a living person, is proactive. But how is it proactive? When read, the Word proactively acts to convict the soul of sin, and encourage the heart to hold steadfast to truth. The Holy Spirit works through and within the Word to reveal the root sin to the sinner, the truth of a matter to the saint seeking understanding.

Psalm 119:105 says,"Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path." At the risk of sounding postmodern, I can definitely say that this has been true in the experiences which Jennifer and I have shared. It is our hope and prayer that anyone who comes across this blog will open God's Word, read it closely, examine their hearts, and be encouraged to pursue a close relationship with the Lord of Lords and King of Kings.

By His grace, btw

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