Column: Humble opinions, God’s truth
I suppose I’m as politically and socially opinionated as anyone I know.
And I know some very opinionated folks.
But let’s explore how God’s truth is distinct from and superior to human opinion.
For starters, nothing frosts someone who has an opinion more than someone else who has the truth. And nothing is more commonly troublesome in human relationships than confusing opinion with truth. All kinds of religions are full of all kinds of people with all kinds of political and social opinions, and certainly all kinds of opinions about the religion itself. Even non-religious folks have strident opinions about religion.
People form opinions based on available human information, which has the nettlesome shortcoming of variable translation depending on a person’s viewpoint, experience and temporal interest. Plus, human information is always changing. Moving target or not, we mistakenly think energetic and clever argument reliably pins down truth. Hence we argue, often pointlessly, but with gusto nonetheless.
God’s information, on the other hand, does not change. His truth is both the end of the argumentative line and the beginning of inarguable, eternal love.
The Christian faith starts with Jesus Christ being the truth that never ends. He doesn’t merely tell the truth, He is the truth. God is love, Jesus is the truth, and the Holy Spirit informs our souls. One can legitimately harbor an opinion as to whether this is the best way to describe the Trinity, but that Jesus is God’s truth transcends opinion.
Jesus instructs us to worship God the Father in the truth (John 4:23) and says that we will know the truth through His teaching (John 8:31). Jesus, the author of truth, asserts that the truth will set us free (John 8:32) and tells us He is the truth (John 14:6). Jesus prays by God’s truth (John 17:17) and constantly says, “I tell you the truth … .”
I tend to be in prima facie agreement with people who say religion is an opinion because there are so many human shadings to church life and faith doctrines. It’s unavoidable that any church full up with human beings will be full up with opinions, while any church that is full up with God will be full up with truth.
Honestly, or perhaps I should say, in my opinion, the latter is a church we would rarely experience because it would be the exact church of the mind of Christ. Humanity isn’t there yet, but we go to church, pray often, read scripture and serve others in humility, all to encounter the only truth unhindered by earthly opinion.
And that is Jesus Christ.
Walters (firstname.lastname@example.org) finds that airing one’s worldly opinions darkens one’s ability to illuminate Christ’s truth.