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The Madera Tribune

Is there an absolute truth?

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webmaster | 06/02/12

“LORD, who may dwell in your sacred tent? Who may live on your holy mountain? The one whose walk is blameless, who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from their heart; whose tongue utters no slander, who does no wrong to a neighbor, and casts no slur on others …“
— Psalm 15:1-3

I believe so, but I also believe it is beyond us to ever know positively what the absolute truth of a matter actually is. As St. Paul puts it, “For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.”

Integrity demands we be as honest with one another as we can, but we also know the truth will be bent or skewed by many things. We shade the truth by the words we use (I borrowed the car, vs. I stole the car); or the way we say something (softly, especially if we want something in return). We hide parts of the truth when we are fearful, when we’re not sure the other person is prepared to hear what we have to say, or when we’re not sure we are prepared to deal with the fall-out that will result from what we have to say.

What’s important to me is not that we have access to the unvarnished truth, as if there is such a thing. Likewise, I don’t think we should go through life assuming that everything is relative, so we can do whatever we like and rationalize that bad behavior isn’t so bad because there are worse things one can always do. Instead, I think it is best to approach life with integrity and humility, and leave the unvarnished truth to God (who is the Way, Truth, and Life)...


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