We see and hear what we want to see and hear, except on those occasions that we see and hear automatically based upon the belief systems and cultures we have grown up in, or have naturally clung to. And while this might be the case, underpinning every single person currently seeing and hearing, are basic questions like: “Where is the truth? And whose truth is it?”
Even people who don’t believe in ultimate truth still believe in truths—they just believe in the little pieces of truth they have grafted into their own personal perception. They repackage or splinter those truths to make them fit their paradigms. They make the truth pieces bow the knee to their own relative “truths.” The problem with this is that perception-based truths are wonky because perception is partial. A part of. Less than. Incomplete.
A person standing outside the front of a house will likely see a front door, windows, a lawn / garden, etc., depending upon his location. But the front door, windows, or lawns (etc) that he is seeing do not make up the sum total of the house.
A person standing outside the back of a house will likely see a back door, pipes or a hot water system or toys in the yard, etc., depending upon her location. But the back of the house and the contents therein, are not the sum total of the house.
A person standing inside a house is going to have a completely different perception of that house, depending upon which room he is standing in, what is surrounding him, and what attachments he has to each of those things.
The thing is, there is such a thing as ultimate truth and it isn’t based upon our perception. Ultimate truth is not relative—even though our eventual arrival at moral relativity (relativism) would tell us that it is. Moral relativity would tell us that the truth runs parallel to our own ideologies, our likes and dislikes and our belief systems; but it doesn’t. And we shouldn’t be running parallel to the truth in the first place; we should be IN the truth.
So while your perception feeds into what you ‘think’ is true, it is only a fraction of the equation. For example, from which vantage point are you standing? In front of the house, behind the house, above, below, or inside of the house? Are you standing in CNN, MSNBC, the ABC? Are you standing in Fox News, the Daily Wire, Sky News? Are you standing on Democratic, Republican, Libertarian (or other) grounds? Each of these is a vantage point. A point of perception. A grouping of ideologies. A place that we cling or cleave to. But what is the truth in amongst all of this really? Where is it? And what is it?
The truth is not a concept. It is not a relative hypothesis. We keep trying to make the truth our own evolving concept. Our slave. We try to squish it into our own teensy ideas and agendas of perception, but the truth of the matter is that the Truth is a person. Yes. You read that right. The truth is a person.
Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” Without Jesus, we are absent from the truth and present in our own limited perceptions. Without Him, we merely sit beneath the Tree of the Knowledge of good and evil, blameshifting, finger-pointing, and propping ourselves up with our own feel-good narratives. How tiring!
The Tree of Life—Jesus—shows us what to do and what not to do because the truth (all of the truth) resides in Him. If He says murder is wrong, then it’s wrong. If He says adultery is wrong, then it’s wrong. If He says judgment and condemnation are wrong, then they’re wrong. If He says love is right, then it’s right. If He says forgive and forget (He remembers our sins no more), then we forgive and forget. If He says Father God is our provider, then He is our provider. There are no two ways about it. There is no plurality. His words are His words and my perceptions must bow the knee to the truth of what He says, because, ultimately, what my Jesus sees and says is far beyond what I see and say.
And don’t get me wrong… being in the truth of Jesus is not about a mere list of rights and wrongs—no! Right and wrongs can become puffed up in knowledge. No, being in the truth is about residing in Jesus. When we reside in Jesus, we automatically reside in the Truth. And we automatically begin to walk in response to the gentle promptings of His Spirit.
John 4:23-24 says, “From here on, worshiping the Father will not be a matter of the right place but with the right heart. For God is a Spirit, and he longs to have sincere worshipers who worship and adore him in the realm of the Spirit and in truth.”
When we focus the sight of our hearts on Jesus, instead of focusing our intellect on perceptions, we cannot help but begin to naturally reflect the person of Jesus. The same truth, love and kindness that is in Him begins to resonate inside of us and then flow from us and into the world around us. Then from that position, perception bows the knee. The knowledge of good and evil bows the knee to everything that exists within Jesus… my self-made throne of rightness surrenders to the Kingship of Jesus.