Saturday, November 8, 2008

When Redundancy is Necessary

by S. Michael Durham

Real truth sounds redundant. Truth is real. And truth can’t be anything but real, can it? No, of course not, unless you manufacture your own truth. And even though manufactured truth isn’t real, you may think and assert that it is. Sadly, this has become the norm at this point in human history. We find ourselves living in an environment where facts are bothersome. Nuance is popular, and rigid truth is cumbersome. This generation thinks truth restricts freedom—freedom of expression and freedom to do your own thing even if it’s wrong. So the answer for modern culture is to cast off absolute and real truth and replace it with convenient truth. But “convenient truth” is an oxymoron—truth isn’t always convenient because it is not always lenient. It does not approve of every motive or action. It neither winks at indiscretion nor turns a deaf ear to injustice. Truth screams, “Foul!” to everything that is foul. It will not weigh the end and justify the means. The desire of an evil heart will not be approved by real truth.

So society has a choice: it can either conform to real truth or reject truth altogether. But men are not naturally anarchists. An anarchist is a person who advocates the overthrow of law. The option to remove law altogether is not logical to a society, thus society makes a third option when there really isn’t a third. It’s like Wile E. Coyote making a door out of thin air and opening the door and walking through it. The God-created moral fabric of a man knows that law and truth must exist, and since he will not have God’s truth, man creates his own version of it. His manufactured truth will be convenient for him. It will promote his interests regardless of consequences.

Recently I was talking with a young man who was a typical post-modernist who told me that we create our own perceptions of reality and truth. I asked him if he took a flame of fire and held it to his hand would he feel pain. He said, “Not unless I chose to feel pain. I create my own perception of suffering.” I then asked him if his bank statement showed an error of several thousand dollars in the bank’s favor what he would do. He replied that he would take his bank statements and records and prove the bank was wrong. I then asked him, “But if there is no absolute truth, and we can create our own perceptions of truth, what would you say to the banker if he said, ‘That’s your perception of truth and this is ours’?” The young man looked at me with disdain and got up and stormed off. He suddenly realized that there are times for absolute truth and he had no argument against it.

Many are advocating a gospel that is supposedly real and will really save. But it isn’t the Gospel of Christ or His apostles. Because of this, we deem it necessary to use a redundancy to describe who we are and what we are about. For years the media ministry of Oak Grove Baptist Church was called Living Priorities. But in the last year we have increasingly felt the need to rethink the name and find something to counteract our times and its false gospels, and definitively say this is what we are about. And of course, the Real Truth is none other than our Lord Jesus Christ.

We hope you like the new name and look of our website. We now have the ability to archive all sermons and resources for your availability. We have also added an easy-to-use online store to purchase any hard copy of the resources you will find on the site. All downloadable products will remain free of charge. We want to make available to you real truth because—real truth matters.

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