The end of each year brings with it summarized information designed to give us insights into the heart, mind and soul of our culture. Whether it’s Google’s Top Searches or ESPN’s Top 10 plays, there is something about encapsulating a year’s worth of data in a way that explains where we have been and where we are going as a culture.
Earlier this month the folks at Oxford Dictionaries came out with their annual “Word of the Year” list and on that list was the word, “Post-Truth.” This term, they state, is defined as, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.”
Take a moment and think about the implications of what they are espousing by that definition. Objective truth – truth that is verifiable, provable and over-arching – is less impactful compared to subjective truth – truth that is personal, private and changeable. IOW, we are people who are driven by feeling and emotion more than intrinsic truth.
This has profound implications for the Christian. One of the chief building blocks of the claims of Jesus is his claim of exclusivity found in John 14:6: “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Jesus makes several profound statements in this short verse. 1) Jesus is THE way. Jesus does not claim to be one way among many to God but that he exclusively is the way. 2) Truth is a person (“I am..the truth…”). If, as he claims, truth is a person and he is that person he is also say, “If you reject Jesus, you reject truth.”
Walk into any bookstore in any town in the USA and you are sure to find and entire section of books dedicated to the idea of self-transformation. Every night television programing runs hours of weight-loss products, exercise programs and other elixirs promising transformative results to those who utilize their products. What is the message that is being conveyed? “You need to change your life,” they communicate, “and this product will transform your life for the better.”