- "A Musing Pastor"
Fake News vs. Truth
I just saw a picture of Abraham Lincoln on Facebook. He was holding a cell phone..... I never realized cell phones were a thing in the mid 1800s! Did you know he was swaggin' before the term ever became
vogue??? Me neither!
(Photo cred: http://instagram.com/9gag!)
Just kidding! Hopefully you didn't believe Lincoln actually had the new I-phone 7.... Sadly, there will be uninformed (Unthinking) folks who see Lincoln's picture and immediately share it as fact! Dangers abound when we consume news and information without engaging our brains and research skills. Misinformation! Fake News! Ughhhhh!!!!!!
Fake news, it seems to be everywhere and used to defend or defeat an opponent. Fact checking comments and back searching fake news has almost become a fulltime job for us. No doubt, there are start up companies coming forth to make millions of dollars for simply fact checking the news, quotes, events, etc. Long gone are the days of integrity in journalism and presenting facts and not inferences and suppositions. Welcome to postmodernity, pluralism, and a host of other 'isms'.
I chuckle when I consider the state of our world. We as a whole have contributed to this dilemma of fake news and half truths wrapped into our current context. Beginning back in Genesis 3 and 4, one can see it. Later the Enlightenment promoted reason as the chief source for truth and knowledge and then along came Modernity. This era in history was one of questioning traditions. Modernity pushed forward ideas about equality, rationalization, and secularization to name a few. Then, enter Postmodernity.
Postmodernity (PM) seamlessly presented notions of questioning everything. I suppose PM was 'fact checking' before it became a big deal just in the last 6 months. Postmodernity revisioned much of what we had been taught and struck at the core element of truth. Postmodernists and pluralists will often say, "There is no such thing as 'absolute truth'." to which one can respond, "Are you absolutely certain of this?" :)
Clearly, these eras of critical thought and movements down through history have always had as a core belief a rebellious nature. The new movement is always pushing against a former movement and position of thought. In some cases, the push back has been toward the Bible, the Church, and God in general. Postmodernity is just another sociological tool that has risen to debunk holiness and faith. At the very least, PM seeks to compartmentalize faith into a lesser area of thought and more along the lines of myth and subjectivity.
Fake news reports and quotes from our leaders bring shrieks of outrage from some of the very people who say that truth is overrated. Some of the same folks who promote Postmodernity are also the ones shocked that Abraham Lincoln could have an I-phone. Postmodernity pushes against truth claims and sets in place a vague reality that is always open to interpretation. Except, when it goes against the Postmodern narrative, then all discussions are off. Truth is not what one chooses to make it. Truth is something that can only have its beginning in God. Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."(John 14:6) His truth claim is valid because he was speaking as God born into a human body. Jesus earlier had told his followers about future events and how they could identify His truth claims.
"So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am the one I claim to be and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.” Even as he spoke, many put their faith in him. To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:28-32, NIV)
TRUTH COMES FROM GOD; AND TRUTH IS A THING!!