By John Larkins
Shamefully, the problem of truth mattering is just as prevalent today as it was in Jesus’ time, and even before then. One source of truth is the Bible, but which version contains that truth?
Then there is the question the Queen of Sheba’s eunuch asked of Philip after Philip asked if he understood what he had read in the Bible (likely the Old Testament), which was: “How can I know unless someone explains it to me?”
I must note that people in that day were smarter than the pastors of today who proclaim the meaning is up to each person. While the Bible is a good place to start in deciding the truth for your personal salvation, there are other important questions that can be approached with Biblical evidence. They cannot be fully resolved to the point of your action.
There are too many similarities between us here in Etowah County and those persons in Jesus’ day. The Jews had nothing to say about the men who governed them, except by rioting as they did in forcing Pontius Pilate to kill Jesus. Pilate knew better, and his wife told him not to do it. It was not too long after the crucifixion that Pilate was chewed up by his Roman superiors.
Today in America, we the people have the right to vote in an election for those who govern us. So far, that is. If we did not have this right, we would not be responsible for the tragic and God-hating people in charge in many jurisdictions around the country. So, who is responsible for legalizing murder, as in abortion? Can you grasp that one political party is very enthusiastic about giving federal money to an abortion group? If you support them, you are as guilty as they are.
God says that “He created us man and woman,” but false teachers tell us God made a mistake, for the fallen say, “I can cut off what God gave me and become what I wish to be” and “I am like God; I can decide if my child lives or dies.” Does this ugly disobedience remind you of the exchange between Eve and Satan? Eve said, “God told us not to partake of the fruit of that tree.”
But Satan said, “If you eat of that fruit you will become like gods; surely God did not say you could not eat it!” As usual, disobedience to God turned out to be a bad idea. Sadly, and with full sympathy, perhaps you might politely ask someone who used his or her vote to support abortion if they would recommend abortion to another child of God.
Liars are so ordinary in today’s culture that they do not even know they are lying. An interesting variation to simple and bald-faced lying is called “quibbling,” in which only some of the known truth is on the table. This process leads to half-truths, which unfortunately are also half-lies. This is a real problem with dangerous activities such as handling firearms. If people are asked if they unloaded their firearm, they may carelessly say they did so until someone pulls the trigger on the round in the chamber and not the magazine. A lot more teenagers know what this means than you may think.
You will have greater pride in yourself and greater respect from your friends when you practice looking for and speaking the truth, no matter how hard it may seem. Jesus said, “I am the Truth!”
John Larkins was born in Oklahoma to an U.S. Army family. His education was in the Catholic Church and teaching in the United Methodist Church for 10 years. After 50 years of various positions in federal service at home and in Vietnam, Saudi Arabia and Iraq, John and his wife Carol live in Gadsden. His formal education includes a BS certified for science teaching, an MBA from the University of Missouri and an MPA from Jacksonville State University in public administration and environmental management. For the past 15 years, John evangelized on the street, door-to-door, in tent revivals, and church situations. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.