Enduring Truth, I suggest, may be a better phrase for postmodern culture than the phrase “absolute truth” that has so riddled Church/culture conversation for the past centuries.
“Absolute” presupposes we know everything, across all time, in all cultures, in all social situations. Given that even our reading and expounding of Scripture involves both unique perception and interpretation, absolute may be a word that has lost its linguistic credibility in the postmodern conversation.
Enduring Truth says that there are truths that have been shown to endure and bring societal health across all time, all people in all contexts. To the postmodern mind, the language of “absolute,” speaks of “we are all-seeing, like God.”
On planet Xanadu, marriage, for example, may be different. We embrace enduring truth for earth life – for example again, marriage between a man and woman, bearing children has proven to be the best long-haul expression of familial commitment.
The Scriptures uphold enduring truths. Use absolute if you like, but I believe it is both a misguided and misused term in the present.
I follow Jesus, and embrace the Scriptures, not just because it’s the authority because I say so; but rather because it packed with experienced enduring truth, and therefore I believe it is inspired by God. Jesus embodies it, and I have fallen passionately in love with his way.
Enduring Truth is resilient, it bounces back, and back around to the front of the crowd. It demands attention, and always will. It sustains it’s sound despite the dampening of the culture.
I’m in. Signs, wonders and miracles have just affirmed that God is present and active in this embrace.
A few years ago, I dreamed a phrase all night long:
“Truth is self-revealing; tell it in a thousand stories.”
I choose to get good at this, passionately telling stories laced with truth, in the second half of my life.