Truth not always palatable

It is time we listen to God, writes Ivan Grindlay. 

The late Billy Graham recalls boyhood days when radio was coming of age. Family gathered around the homemade set, turning the tuning dial. Often the only noise was static, but by persisting, they eventually heard a voice loud and clear.

Does God speak to us? Very much so! The problem is our incapacity to hear Him.

He speaks in creation, in circumstances and through written revelation, the Bible.

When Jesus entered our world 2000 years ago, his teaching brought mixed reactions: some listened, some believed, and others conspired against Him because his words didn't fit their cultural agenda. They didn't grasp the meaning of his parables ("earthly stories with a heavenly meaning").

Secrets of the kingdom of God were for needy hearts open to divine truth.

The "spirit of the age" in which we live is infected by evil and we unwittingly play along to its dictates, unaware of its deceptive power. Easily influenced by "bandwagon" public opinion (social media), we are blinded by Satan's kingdom of darkness, characterised by lies and deception (see John 8:42-45).

For those seeking truth, God has been revealing. His eternal plan since time began.

The Bible says: "... what may be known about God is plain to [us] because God has made it plain. For since the creation of the world, God's invisible qualities - His eternal power and divine nature - are clearly seen, being understood from what he has made, so that we are without excuse" (Romans 1:19-20; cf. Ecclesiastes 3:11b).

The "wisdom" of this age, taught insidiously in our learning institutions, is opposed to divine revelation, much like David Attenborough.

Although exposed to evidence of God's creative genius daily, closed and rebellious minds refuse to concede.

We deny weekly Bible-in-Schools teaching where students might learn about their origins and destiny.

Tertiary students learn not to question tutors for fear of being ridiculed and being "marked down".

This tangled web of deception perpetuated by academics playing follow-the-leader glorifies the esteemed institution at the cost of honest and transparent debate.

Instead, our youth are brainwashed, showing increasing propensity to rebel and flout the law by striking, protesting and marching for whatever is fashionable - so discontentment simmers.

Now "saving the planet" victimises farmers, reduces job opportunities, shatters regional economies and exacts extra taxes for carbon emissions.

Why not trust the Creator to sustain His amazing world, rather than being duped by "doom brigaders" convinced they can save the planet. It is producing an insecure generation with no spiritual foundations who find that living is not a good option.

Those who choose to oppose the sovereign wisdom of God, preferring to obsess over speculative presuppositions, gullibly accept any popular alternative to divine truth and reality.

The Bible warns: "The wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of [those] who suppress the truth by their wickedness" (Romans 1:18) .

You may choose to deny or suppress truth, but truth remains and will ultimately rise up and condemn you.

Speculative theory taught as fact will eventually be exposed, unable to hold up under scrutiny. The perpetrators, lacking discernment, grasp at any plausible alternative.

So what are the options?

Acknowledge the reality of God evident in our physical world, or struggle to make sense of "His power and divine nature" that can bring joyous change.

To persistently ignore God's revelation in creation will determine the outcome (v28-32). God will accept our choices, "giving us over" (abandoning us) to our natural instincts - the sinful pursuits of depraved minds doing what should not be done. Removing His hand from our lives, we are left to self-destruct while pursuing fiendish ends.

It is in the nature of truth to not always be palatable, so we bury our heads in the sand and avoid the facts (John 14:6).

Our suicide rate in New Zealand suggests many have lost hope. Without an anchor when the foundations fail, we become restless and anxious.

Perhaps Israel Folau's efforts to share truth was an act of love.

Love that avoids the truth is not love - it's deception!

Jesus has an answer, a way out of the universal human dilemma. "Come unto Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28).

 - Ivan Grindlay is a member of `The Gathering', Dunedin

 

Comments

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If we are to listen to GOD, then we have to know who she is?
If there is one God, then she is the same one that Moslems also worship. Christians worship Jesus but what I note is, 99% don't know the difference between God & Jesus.
Then there is the Bible - a collection of essays from various sources - put together (as we know it now), much later after Christ's time. Christ is quoted in it, in a few places. It may have the spirit of God in it but God does not write it.
Too many people read the Bible without a clue what it says, taking things quite literally and out of context.
I fully concur your sentiments about Bible-in-Schools. It does no harm, but gives an opportunity to know what many talk about. Your comments about Tertiary Tutors is also spot on. Grads today come out brainwashed knowing only unworkable theories. Say what the tutor wants to hear and you'll get marks.
Overall Ivan, you are spot on.

Complaints about Bible in Schools so overwhelmed the Human Rights Commission that they were unable to deal with them and recommended the issue be sent to the High Court. A case was approved and is likely to be heard later this year or early next year. Note that for the HRC to agree to hear a case, harm has to be shown first. Also, please explain why people who want religion can't just go to church instead of expecting faith teaching in schools that are meant to be non-religious?

Ivan Grindlay brilliantly but unintentionally exemplifies the dangers of religious thinking. The "god has a plan, so don't worry about reality because the next life is the one that counts" attitude is frighteningly ignorant and superstitious and is exactly the sort of nonsense that we need to protect vulnerable primary school children from.

The world around Ivan is "evidence of God's creative genius" because he has been indoctrinated into Christian faith and clearly lacks the knowledge necessary to understand reality without making religious claims.

Children should learn how to think for themselves before people like Ivan try and teach them what to believe. Keep evangelists out of our schools. You can learn more at www.religiouseducation.co.nz.

long live the faith in Christ ..........in new Zealand

Yes, I totally agree with Dave Smyth - we need to stop viewing "blind faith" as a virtue. A real virtue is a sincere interest in learning about our world, and using the evidence and knowledge we gather to better appreciate what we see around us. Religion does nothing but distract us from that with pointless fanciful (and, in my opinion, remarkably bland) mythology.

Can't remember who said, paraphrased: "that Christian faith must be a powerful idea, because after 2000 years of mismanagement by the Church, it is still around."

The separation of Church and State came about after the powerful papists in Rome essentially set to war with the Commons in England over hundreds of years. The relationship became more about power than faith. It took generations for the idea of separating them to settle in. It seemed to start around the English Reformation (in the form of Henry VIII) & Luther movement and heated up with lopping off of some Catholic Royal's heads to really get some conversations started. It gained considerable traction by Jefferson in the first amendment to his declaration of independence (or war against England!)

Anyways, there is nothing wrong with Bibles in schools. The whole idea has been warped by Marxists whom seek to destroy the influence of religion. They want to separate it from peoples lives. The idea was to get it out of the hands of politicians. Islam on the other hand, is a welding of religion and politics. The opposite.

Tolkien was the most powerful evangelist because no one knew he was.

Ivan Grindley is a man who likes and helps people, highly qualified and not 'ignorant'. His faith appears to be Fundamentalist, which is his human right. But children should not automatically conform to systems. The systems might be wrong.

Ecumenism is the way to peace, not holy war.

Children need to be shown correct ways of living / less when adult would end up in jail / we need more fundamentalist leaders in community and government/ and this has started /

"Why not trust the Creator to sustain His amazing world" unbelievably ignorant

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