By Matt Dawson
One day, Mark began to write a report about the moon for his class project at school. Andy also chose to write a report about the moon, and both had to deliver their reports on Friday. They didn’t know what each other had written until a conversation started at lunch on Thursday about the COLOR of the moon.
“I believe the crystals on the moon give it a predominantly blue/white color that our eyes detect from earth,” Mark said.
“No, that’s stupid. Haven’t you ever seen old pictures of moon rocks? The moon is a gray/black color clearly,” Andy responded back to Mark.
“Your face is stupid! How in the world would we be able to see the moon if it was gray/black in the night sky?” March shouted. “You’re wrong!”
“Your mom is wrong,” Andy angrily yelled back at Mark. “Why are you only going by what your eyes see at night and not the facts we have from bringing moon rocks back with us?”
Immediately, a teacher intervened and took them to the principal’s office for making a ruckus in the lunchroom. Outside the principal’s office they continues to fight with one another.
“You’re so wrong Mark,” Andy said. “I’m right and the principal is going to agree with me.”
“Whatever Andy,” Mark responded. “Your argument completely denies what people see everyday, and 99% of people would agree with me.”
The principal opened his door and invited the two boys in. The principal was already in a meeting with someone but interrupted it because he was used to seeing these two kids fight about the most inconsequential things. He couldn’t wait to see what they were arguing about this time.
The two boys stated their cases to the principal. Surely he would settle which one was right and which was wrong. He listened carefully to both arguments, and then began to tell the boys that they both had good points but that they were missing something essential.
“The truth is boys,” the principal said, “you are not able to understand all the facts needed to come to the truth about the moon. However, luckily enough, I happen to be meeting with someone right now about some questions that I have and can’t figure out. When this happens to me, I go right to the source of all truth and knowledge. Boys… meet Jesus.”
“Hi boys,” Jesus said. “Believe it or not, my Father and I created the moon and set it into place and I know exactly what color the moon is.”
“Really?” Mark said in shock. “How’d you do that?” Andy said with wonder!
“You see boys, whenever you guys fight about who’s right, you have to find some way to make sure the other person is wrong. As a matter of fact, the ONLY way for you to feel right about your answer is to MAKE the other person feel wrong about their answer,” Jesus explained.
“Well, is one of us right?” Mark asked.
“It’s hard to say,” Jesus said. “Both of you have elements of your argument that are right. Then again, you guys are both missing a large amount of information that you couldn’t know without discussing it with me. After all, I created the moon and put it in it’s place. Some mysteries of the moon can only be explained by me. It does seem like gray dust on the outside when holding a moon rock in your hands, AND it does have multiple billions reflectors in that dust that give it a blue/white glow when it reflects the sun light back to the earth.”
“So, we’re both right?” Andy said confused.
“In a relative manner of speaking – yes,” Jesus said. “However, why settle for a relative truth as your answer? You have ME at your disposal and can ask me anything you want. After all…I created everything!”
The saddest state of the post-modern movement is society’s abandonment of absolute truth in exchange for subjective relative truths that must be argued and defended at all cost for them to remain true.
There is a better way!
Join us Sunday as we continue our series “Questions Without Answers” concerning the LGBTQ community.
By Matt Dawson
This weekend, we will kick of a brand new series entitled “Questions Without Answers.”
If you’re anything like my wife Tracie, the series already bothers you.
Because you LOVE answers. The idea that something does not have a clear answer is frustrating and you can only imagine 3 weeks of me frustrating you every Sunday with questions that only produce more questions.
Well, I promise not to do that. Or at least, I promise that it’s not my intention to do that.
This series is going to tackle 3 current cultural issues that have tons of questions without answers. The racial issues in country, the LGTBQ community, and the state of politics in our country. All of these issues have questions surrounding them that many people struggle to answer with any sort of absolute truth. People struggle to find any objective answers to these questions and instead we debate our subjective truths (my truth vs your truth) until we’ve lost sight of the original question.
King David in the Psalms writes…
Psalm 86:11 – “Teach me your ways, O Lord, that I may live according to your Truth!”
In our post-modern culture, many have rejected the ideology of a single standard of absolute truth. David didn’t seem to have any problem with absolute truth. He even requested to KNOW God’s ways so that he could live out his life according to HIS Truth.
I believe that many of our culture’s questions that are surrounded with subjective answers can help us find our way back to the possibility that there IS an absolute truth in all things. His name was Jesus. His ways are available to us and we can choose to live according to His truth even in today’s unsettling times.
Join us over the next 3 weeks as we seek out God’s truth together and recognize how it can impact our lives!
By Zack DeBerry
As we talk about why we can trust the Bible, it is important to know that much of history is written about in the texts of the Bible. However, just as much that is revealed in the text, there are still many things that are open to interpretation. It is in this interpretation that some people may be led to believe things that aren’t always true. Whether they get their information from the latest Bible series on network television or just trust the first blog that appears after a Google search, people will always have questions about the things that aren’t addressed in the Bible.
As followers of Jesus Christ, we are called to always be ready to give an answer as to why we believe what we believe. We see this in 1 Peter 3:15 where Peter writes, “And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.” What Peter is referring to here is a word we call Apologetics.
Apologetics is a term that can take on a life of its own at times, but essentially Apologetics is defined as a reason or reasons why you believe what you believe. That’s what Peter urges all of us to do in the above verse. Some folks may think that Apologetics are best left to the “Professional Christians,” but it’s my belief that we should ALL know what Apologetics means and why it should be important.
Here are a few reasons why I think Apologetics should matter to us ALL:
1. People Have Questions
This should be motivation enough for us to care about Apologetics and be ready to give a reason for why we believe and have the hope that we do in Jesus. I know that it can be daunting to feel like you have to have an answer for every question. The truth is that you may not have all the facts and information about a literal 6 day creation theory, but you should be able to tell someone WHY you believe what you do. That is the first step in helping answer someone’s question. Give them a reason to continue to seek the answers they need. Tell them why you believe.
2. Bad Information is Everywhere.
It’s cool to see that Bible stories and themes have made it into mainstream media, but we must make sure that we realize there could be some creative liberties taken at times. As a follower of Jesus Christ, we must have enough knowledge of Biblical events to be able to offer correction where it is needed when Hollywood gets it wrong. There are many people who will trust what they see on television or read in a book as the truth, even when it isn’t factually correct. When we take Apologetics seriously it allows us to enter into conversations that are created by various entertainment outlets and present the truth of the Gospel.
3. The Future
Apologetics isn’t just for you, it’s for the future. What I mean by that is, as a father of 3 children my kids need me to know why I believe and to be able to answer questions that they have about faith as they come up. We must take ownership for how our families view the Bible and the world. Caring about Apologetics means that I care enough to be ready to give an answer when the questions come, and they will come.
These are just a few of the reasons why I care about Apologetics and think it’s important for everyone. Ultimately, we must be ready to provide answers when questions arise. 1 Peter 3:15 gives us an all call to become Apologists, but I think it is important to read the first few words of verse 16 as well. Peter goes on to say this: “But do this in a gentle and respectful way.” This may be the most important piece of advice when it comes to Apologetics.
Our job is not to convince everyone by drawing lines in the sand, but to be ready to give them our WHY. When we move Apologetics from telling our stories and reasons to creating a staunch defense we will lose the intent of what Peter calls us to do.
By Don Gentry
This Sunday, we are starting a new series called Why I Can Trust the Bible. It is unfortunate that many people feel that they can’t adequately explain and express why they believe in Jesus and the Bible without feeling like they are inferior intellectuals.
Many non-believers feel that Christianity is some form of a religious or emotional crutch. Yet it is also amazing the number of Christians that cannot articulate a reason for their faith in Christ. This series is designed to help us as individuals have a solid, explainable approach to understanding our faith.
As a church, we also want you to be able to express your faith to everyone as we humbly point others to absolute hope. There is a passage of scripture that really helps to solidify the purpose behind this series. We are going to spend the next few weeks covering this incredibly important and interesting approach to faith.
“15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect”, 1 Peter 3:15 (NIV2011)
Our church’s mission is to humbly point Everyone to absolute Hope. How do we share an “absolute truth” without aggressively debating, emotionally shaming, intellectually convincing, or personally guilting others into a belief? It is done by expressing a truth with gentleness and respect. This series is designed to help equip us to know how to do this better.
This week, we will be making our faith come alive as we look at how history supports trust and belief in the scriptures. I look forward to watching the truth of the word come alive to each of us over the next few weeks.
If you hang around the Journey staff for any length of time, you’ll notice that we LOVE to talk. If you get us going on something we’re all interested in, we can really dig into some good stuff. We wanted to take the dynamic of a conversation like that and bring it to the podcast.
In this episode, we gathered some of our staff together to discuss their thoughts on the relationship between grace & truth. Most people have strong opinions one way or the other on this issue, but as you’ll hear in the conversation, this isn’t such a clear cut issue.
009 The Journey Online Podcast | A Conversation on Grace and Truth w/ Journey Staff
What’s In This Episode?
- What is your starting point on Law vs. Grace? (1:30)
- Why is this one of the more important issues for a follower of Jesus to understand? (5:15)
- What areas do we struggle with this in the Church? (13:35)
- Where do you personally struggle with this issue? (21:35)
- Final Thoughts? (33:20)