Taking truth off the table
“I am the way and the truth and the life.” – Jesus Christ, John 14:6
Lance Armstrong is a spectacular example of the human condition.
The worldly culture witnessing the self-motivated outing of his sinister, slanderous plots, prickly personality and performance drug doping is clamoring for “truth.” But when juxtaposed with Armstrong’s heroic battle against cancer, nearly unequaled charitable impact, unprecedented but drug-assisted athletic feats, and the not-insignificant fact that he loves his children (good) but abandoned their mother for rock star Cheryl Crow (bad), “truth” becomes a hard commodity to pin down.
Our sports-minded culture wants good and evil to be on a scoreboard plainly displaying who’s ahead, who’s behind, who wins and who loses. But no secular scoreboard can conclusively delineate “truth” for humanity’s good, bad and ugly.
Conversely, celebrity-deifying and God-conflicted modern society clearly does not want an assessment of Lance Armstrong’s “truth” that dismissively asserts, “This is not a truth that matters; Jesus Christ is a truth that matters.”
In the copious news reporting and talk-show chatter surrounding Armstrong’s Oprah-facilitated confession, I’ve yet to hear any testimony as to the existence of the ultimate truth, which is what we have in Jesus Christ (see John 14:6). This isn’t to assess Armstrong’s heart or personal faith; it’s to indict our culture’s misplaced priorities and utter absence of asking real questions about “truth.” We mistakenly worship human celebrities and then mistakenly demand from them divine truth.
I heard more than one commentator exclaim, “I don’t know what to believe.”
Well, here’s the truth: Armstrong is as good and bad as any other human being can be, because each of us carries the image of God and the salvation of Jesus Christ right along with the fallenness of worldly sin and corruption. When we look at Armstrong’s situation and seriously attempt to ascertain “truth,” it cannot be found if the teaching, life, love and Truth of Jesus Christ have been taken off the cultural table.
But that’s where we are.
Living strong will never be the equal of living in truth, and from where I sit, the only truth is Christ.
Walters (firstname.lastname@example.org) believes confession works best when accompanied by repentance, observes that while none of us wants to be judged, we vigorously, giddily, judge Armstrong, and reminds all that Christ had compassion for both the oppressed (blind man) and the oppressor (Zacchaeus), Luke 18:35-19:10.