Pilate asked him, “What is truth?” John 18:38
- The fruit eaten by Adam and Eve in the garden was not necessarily an apple. (See Genesis 3:1-6)
- The sin of Sodom and Gomorrah was not homosexual behavior. (See Ezekiel 16:49-50 .)
- Mary Magdalene was not a reformed prostitute. (See Luke 7:36-50. The woman in this story is never identified as MM – or a prostitute.)
If somebody repeats something often enough it becomes “true” even when it isn’t:
- President Obama is a Muslim.
- Ted Cruz’ father is linked to the Kennedy assassination.
- Gerald Ford was clumsy.
- Hillary Clinton is dying.
Sadly we even hear such misinformation in our church communities. Dying churches often breed false narratives about the pastor or the single parent in the fourth pew or the office volunteer. It’s all about power issues.
We in the Church should be the last ones to spread false stories about each other, but – especially in these days of dramatic culture shifts – some grasp onto false narratives and spread them because . . .
- false stories distract people from the real issues?
- false stories give power to those with dwindling power?
- false stories are crazy-making?
Imagine a world in which our mantras of truth go like this:
- We don’t know what will happen but we trust that God will guide us.
- This (pastor, teacher, leader) has a hard job and she is trying to do her best.
- It’s not about me. It’s about expanding the reign of God.
If we hear crazy stories about each other, check them out. Don’t believe the crazy.
Image of a pomegranate. It could have been a pomegranate in the Garden of Eden.