Ep. 20 – Seeking Truth in a ‘Post-Truth’ Culture
The culture and Christ seem to collide often. Many today operate with a postmodern mindset. Do we get to determine what truth is? Can something be true for me, yet false for others? Owen Strachan wrote an article for Reformanda Ministries, titled, “Why So Sensitive? Ministry in a Post-Truth Culture,” and it provides much insight regarding a “post-truth” culture. Let’s take a look and seek the truth together.
Quotes From Owen Strachan
“By this formulation people commonly mean that life in a ‘postmodern’ age means that we steer clear of absolutes in our thinking and our speech. We don’t speak of what is true for all peoples at all places in all times; we speak of what is true for me.”
“To embrace a ‘post-truth’ perspective means that one has effectively evacuated the Word and the gospel of any timeless, once-for-all authority.”
“Let me suggest six ways a secularistic post-truth mindset might filter into our lives and ministries…
- First, we excessively qualify even basic statements…
- Second, we downplay actions and emphasize feelings…
- Third, we move away from apologies, clouding them with qualifiers…
- Fourth, we negotiate instead of drawing clear lines…
- Fifth, we lead only with great hesitancy and fearfulness…
- Sixth, we see doubt as true and truth as doubtful.”
“This is really the age of the antagonist, isn’t it? A post-truth culture supports the rise of the perpetual naysayer, the endless nuance-proclaimer, the inveterate bone-picker. Many of us have experienced this phenomenon on Twitter, where even basic statements are picked over like bone-in filets dropped into piranha tanks. This tendency has bled over into contemporary conversation. We excessively qualify ourselves in our discussions, our brains churning like those of $400-per-hour lawyers as we try to stay a step ahead of our interlocutors, furiously trying to recognize loopholes and weaknesses in our verbiage.”
“When you say one declarative sentence—’The Bible is true’—but then feel the need to say eleven consecutive sentences about what your first sentence does not mean, you are a post-truth communicator. You may not know it, and you certainly may not intend to be, but the point stands: a post-truth culture is influencing your speech (and thinking) in a major way.”
“Let the world be post-truth. The church of Christ must know, love, live by, proclaim, and lead according to the truth. This truth—God’s own truth—is not conditioned by any prefix; it is firmly fixed in the heavens, and stands forever according to the counsel of God.”
Read Owen’s full article for Reformanda Ministries here.
I recently tweeted on my personal page about wanting to find more users that boldly preach Christ without tweeting about what Christ is not. Shortly after, I came across Owen’s article, which touched on exactly what I’ve been wanting to communicate.
We must be ready to defend our beliefs; however, we should not spend a lot of time and energy talking a lot about what Christianity is not. This kind of communication is everywhere.
Many believe they get to determine what is true for them. Christians, on the other hand, recognize that God is the one who determines truth and we follow what God says. Furthermore, God’s truth is timeless and applicable for anyone, anytime. The post-truth perspective is not timeless.
In a form of judgment, God allows some to determine their own truth, and gives them over to a debased mind (cf. Romans 1:28; 2 Thessalonians 2:11). We must repent and trust that God knows exactly what he is talking about. His ways are right, true, pure, and trustworthy.
Share Your Thoughts
So what do we do about our post-truth culture? How do we make a fruitful impact in our communication and message on social media? What stands out to you in Owen’s article for Reformanda Ministries? Leave a comment below and share this episode on social media if anything spoke to you.