Thursday, February 25, 2010

Truth, 9/11, Perception & Biblical Understanding

I've been transitioning into a new role at work, and writing personnel evaluations so I haven't been putting much effort into On My Walk lately. In fact my study time has been next to nil, which I admit is not a good thing.

One thing I have been spending a bit of time on is watching various videos about the 9/11 attacks in the USA and the various theories about what happened that day. I have a view of what happened that day that is based on my perception, and the information I've viewed both accurate and inaccurate. My view of what happened isn't important to this post so I'll leave it out, I really don't want to talk about "What really happened!" on my blog at all.

I'm very interested in how people study the Word of God and in inspiring others to take the highest possible view of Scripture. I truly believe everyone can "know truth and be sure of it!" as I state on the back cover of Fail-Safe For Fallacy, if they but just read the Scriptures and believe them.

There's a bit of a problem though. People are not very good at "finding" truth. We are very good at supporting what we think is true with our perception of various evidence. We all suffer from selective perception, and a tendency to weigh evidence that we can explain within our chosen perception much more heavily than evidence we can't. We are excellent at self deception through the process of agreeing with ourselves.

Fred Lybrand had an interesting thread about how people come to faith last year. I think the discussion could be expanded to include how people understand any type of evidence, be that Scripture or YouTube videos.

You see, I decided to check out the "other position" about 9/11 and watched a number of videos. I felt a familiar emotion rising up in me, fear that maybe I've been wrong and would have to admit it. As I watched the videos I found there were some convincing points being made by the supporters of the "other position." I started to wonder at how easily I could be swayed by media, which led to me being much more critical, and I realized that I was not going to actually be convinced by clever videos to change my mind.

So why do so many people look at 9/11 and see things one way, and many others look at it and see something absolutely different? More importantly why does one group of people look at the Scriptures and see Covenant Theology, NuCalvinism, and Lordship Salvation while another group sees Dispensational Truth (that's the title not an intended slight), Progressive Revelation and Free Grace? Well OK I guess I'm actually more interested in the why those who are wrong (whoever that might be - because the who is wrong is not important for the question) can't seem to see the truth. Why is it?

I think we are victims of our selective perception. We are not very good at finding truth. Truth must be revealed, and once it is revealed it is undeniable. Please note that everyone thinks their theology is "undeniable," therefore it's "undeniability" is not a good test of it's validity.

What do you think? Are we able to find truth? Maybe I have some agreement with "inability" after all...

Tuesday, February 09, 2010


What is important enough to write? What is important enough to read?

I've completely changed what I take the time to listen to in my study time. I used to listen to a couple of lightweight podcasts - one I mostly agree with, the other I often (but not always) disagree with. I thought their was wisdom in this... I thought I was being so noble to give time to these studies. However, the truth is my time is so very compressed right now that anything I give time to must be highly valuable.

So for the last two weeks I've been listening to some deeper doctrine based teaching. Verse by verse stuff that goes from cover to cover in the Bible. It is amazing to me that NOW I couldn't imagine taking the time to listen to the podcasts I had previously been enjoying.

I'm trying to figure out how to get back into the swing of writing here. There are valuable things to write about, but there are also other things that though they may seem valuable are more about entertainment than building up.