Sunday, May 31, 2009

Absolute Truth

I've been asked this question a lot: "What do you believe are the absolute truths."

I get that. I used to do that to people, too.

It's a litmus test -- the purpose of which is to determine whether or not the responder is "in" or "out."

My absolute-truth-list used to be a mile long ... it was founded upon the Apostle's Creed, and the Nicene Creed, and an accumulation of all those things that *others* told me were "absolute truths."

This was my plumb-line, which I used to divide from others ... because they will know we are Christian by our divisions, y'know. Must. Stay. Safe.

Reminds me of this rather uncomfy-yet-hysterical joke:

I was walking across a bridge one day, and I saw a man standing on the edge, about to jump off. I immediately ran over and said "Stop! Don't do it!"

"Why shouldn't I?" he said.

I said, "Well, there's so much to live for!"

"Like what?"

"Well ... are you religious or atheist?"


"Me too! Are you Christian or Jewish?"


"Me too! Are you Catholic or Protestant?"


"Me too! Are you Episcopalian or Baptist?"


"Wow! Me too! Are you Baptist Church of God or Baptist Church of the Lord?"

"Baptist Church of God."

"Me too! Are you Original Baptist Church of God, or are you Reformed Baptist Church of God?"

"Reformed Baptist Church of God."

"Me too! Are you Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1879, or Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1915?"

"Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1915!"

To which I said, "Die, heretic scum!" and pushed him off.

As for absolute truth ... I see Truth as a Person to know (Christ) and not a concept to grasp/defend.

As I get to know Him more and more (experientially), my list of absolutes has radically shrunk. More and more it's looking like: Love God; Love Neighbor.

I believe that God is absolute, but that our concepts of Him, and of His nature, are very subjective. And that we, who are mid-process, have no business in telling other mid-processors what's absolute truth, and what's absolute falsehood.

We were told to stay *away* from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, not to climb it and throw rotten fruit.

While we're all (all!) mid-process here, journeying from "looking through a glass dimly" into all truth, we can afford to treat each other the way that Jesus said to treat each other. Whether we consider each other a brother, friend, neighbor, or "enemy", it's the same heart-response: Love.

As we each follow the One who is both Guide and Goal, let's practice that love-thing, more than we practice that division-thing.

Just for a change of pace.

Shalom, Dena

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