Truth has stumbled in the streets
Isaiah spoke 700 years before Christ what we can clearly see in our world 2,000 years after Christ. Truth has become so hard to find. Isaiah said "Like the blind we grope along the wall, feeling our way like men without eyes" (Isaiah 59: 10). This is no way to live. In order to walk in the plans that the Lord has for us, plans to prosper us and not to harm us, plans that give us hope and define our future, we need to be walking with eyes wide open, not groping along a wall in total darkness. Walking blind, we may well end up down a dark alley or a tangled ferret hole never to return to our destiny. Years lost roaming, instead of steadfastly pursuing our goals and dreams; those God-given plans designed to prosper us and those around us. What a tragedy!
When we have no truth
We are all small cogs in the very big machine of life. When we loose our own grip on reality, on truth as defined by God, society as a whole suffers. Isaiah tells us of the consequences: "Justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter" (Isaiah 59: 14-15). God defines the parameters of how we each should live life - a life of integrity, reliability, trustworthiness - truth. God also defines the parameters of how society should live - with social justice and righteousness. The parameters for individual life and society life are the same and both are shaped by God. Society is nothing more than the collection of people in it - all of us together, one people, sharing a world that is not our own. So why do we have social injustice? Why do we still fight country-to-country and even within our own country brother-to-brother? Why is there still racial discrimination? Gender inequality? Religious and political meltdowns? Why can we not live together? We cannot truly live because truth has stumbled and honesty cannot enter in. And so will it continue, brother hating brother, discrimination, unrest, riot, and bitterness, so long as truth remains fallen in the street.
Where is the truth
Psalm 119 states "your word is a lamp unto my feet, a light for my path" (Psalm 1:105). Psalm 1 states "Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers" (Psalm 1:1-3).
The truth is the law of God; not the law of man which is fleeting; not the trends of society that change with fashion; not the ideals of the next generation which change with each new growth; not the rules of the government which change with each election cycle; not the national headlines that change with latest excitement; not the posts on Facebook that reel for likeability. All of these may contain some truths, but the source of truth that speaks to the deepest issues, across all nations, and across all times is never-changing Word of God.
Let's look at a few of God's truths. Everyone of us is created by the same hand of God - each perfectly and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14); God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son that whosoever believes on Him shall not not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16); He commands us to love our neighbor (Matthew 22:39). How many social injustices could be ended within our generation by just observing these three simple truths? How much more righteousness could come about from simply acknowledging each other as brothers and sisters in Christ who are loved by God?
Why has truth fallen in the street?
What is your process for qualifying societal trends, news media, or other information against the Word of God to determine where the real truth may lie?
Predispositions are established patterns that we hold to. We are usually aware of these and can acknowledge their influences on our attitudes and behaviors (e.g. Republican vs Democrat; preference for tea vs coffee). Predispositions are different to biases. Biases are much trickier to determine because they operate under the radar, often without our awareness (e.g. childhood influences, indoctrinated views). Only people without a subconscious have no bias (that's no one!). At best, we underestimate the covert influence of our own biases on our opinions and behaviors; at worst we believe they do not exist at all. What possible biases might you bring to your interpretations of truth? Think of 'natural' political or religious ideals you have that are not directly stated in God's Word. If your answer is 'none,' pray that the Lord would raise your awareness of your biases so that you can manage them rather than allowing them to contribute to truth falling in the street.
Being more aware of your biases, how have these wrongly informed your attitudes and behaviors over the past year? Who do you need to make restitution with given biases that may have hurt someone?