Truth is under siege in our society. When I make this statement it begs the question, “What is truth?”
From a biblical perspective truth, like all other pieces of the full armor of God, is in actuality an aspect of the nature of God himself. Thus, to put on the belt of truth is to put on Christ, for Christ is truth, and as Christians we are called to be the bearers of truth.
I love how Os Guinness explains this, he says that we don’t believe the truth of Christianity because it works, that would be plain old pragmatism, because it feels right, that would be subjectivism, or because it’s only true for me, that would be relativism; rather, we believe that Christianity is true because it’s based on the person and work of Christ. He further elaborates the Christian faith is not true because it works; it works because it is true. It is not true because we experience it; we experience it—deeply and gloriously—because it is true. It is not simply ‘true for us;’ it is true for any who seek in order to find, because truth is true even if nobody believes it and falsehood is false even if everybody believes it. That is why truth does not yield to opinion, fashion, numbers, office, or sincerity—it is simply true and that is the end of it.”
Truth is ultimately true because it is rooted in the nature of God himself. Truth is therefore essential to a realistic worldview. The moment we drop the belt of truth, our view of reality becomes seriously skewed. You see this all the time when you listen to the Word of Faith teachers.
For instance, I was recently listening to John Hagee on TBN, talking about a “true story.” Hagee is adamant in saying that this is an absolutely true story, and even gives us the name of the person involved. Here is what he said;
A true story of a man named Nick. He was strong, healthy, he worked on the railroad team, he got along well with his fellow workers, and was constantly reliable on the job. He had a deep fear that he would be locked into an isolated refrigerated boxcar. One summer day the train crews were told they could quit an hour early, and when the other workmen left the site, Nick was accidentally locked into a refrigerated boxcar in the yard for repairs. He panicked. He shouted, and screamed in fear. Nick believed that the temperature in the car was 0 degrees. He thought “if I don’t get out, I’m going to freeze to death!” Shivering uncontrollably, he scrawled a message to his wife, “I’m so cold, my body’s getting numb, if I could just go to sleep, these may be my last words…” The next morning the crew slid open the door of the boxcar, and found Nick’s body. An autopsy revealed that every physical sign indicated that he had frozen to death, except, the boxcar’s refrigeration unit was broken. The temperature inside the boxcar was never lower than 61 degrees. Nick’s fear, became a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Hagee uses this “true story” to beguile his devotees into thinking that faith must be force, and words the containers of the force, and that through the force of faith we can create our own reality. The reality is, however, that what Hagee has told his followers is not a true story. It is merely an urban legend. This is unfortunately just one of many examples of where truth is under siege. Joel Osteen likes to tell this urban legend also, so it appears that this lie has traveled through faith circles, and now to many people it makes the point that faith must be a force, and words the containers of the force, and that through the force of faith we can create our own reality.
I address this and many other issues in my new book Christianity in Crisis 21st Century that is available at our Website of www.equip.org, or by calling us at 1-888-700-0274. For those of you in the Los Angeles area, I will be speaking on the topic Truth Under Siege at the Renaissance Los Angeles Airport Hotel, February 20th, 2009 at 7:00pm. It is free, but you need to register at our Website.
1. Os Guinness, Time For Truth: Living Free in a World of Lies, Hype and Spin (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2000), 78-80.
2. John Hagee, John Hagee Today, Trinity Broadcasting Network January 15, 2009. This is a common Urban Legend, found on many Urban Legend Debunking sites such as Snopes.com (http://www.snopes.com/horrors/gruesome/freezer.asp). Furthermore, I address Hagee’s and other Word of Faith teacher’s use of Urban Legends in my book, Christianity in Crisis 21st Century.
3. Joel Osteen, Your Best Life Now (Warner Faith, 2004), 72-73.