Pastor Thalacker’s Words for The Month
(Jesus said) “If you continue in my Word, you are truly my disciples. You will know
the truth and the truth will set you free.” (John 8) and (Jesus said) “I am the way, the truth and the life. No-one comes to the Father but by me.” (John 14)
Not long ago (5-8-18) in the Des Moines Register in the USA today section, an article
appeared that was titled “Morality vs. Reality.” The gist of the article was directed to asking the question about what the author of the article believed or indicated to be an adversarial relationship between morality (the question of what is “right” and what is “wrong”) and reality (what is the experience of what is “true” and what is “false” (we might call that “fake news”).
In other words, the question being raised was whether what is right or wrong is opposed to the way the real world works / reality.
The article was thought-provoking (if ms-leading) in that it set as opposite things that are not opposites. The opposite of reality is not morality. It’s fantasy or delusion. And the opposite of morality is not reality. It’s immorality.
We have a son who is a legal public defender. He talks about persons with whom he works as his clients making “bad decisions” / immoral decisions that get them in trouble with the law. Their “bad decisions” become thoughts and actions based on false information / self-deception / fantasies about something....perhaps the lack of consequences for “bad decisions”....or that they can “get away with”....or that they are justified in some way....or something or other of other things. That becomes “fake news” even if the fact that we can do that kind of thing is part of the real world. There probably isn’t much cure for that kind of stupidity....only control.
Every Sunday when the congregation gathers for worship we challenge that mistaken “fake news” in the confessional with which we begin the service. We say, “If we say we have no sin we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us (I John 1).
We should really never omit that every Sunday or any day. It’s how the old, sinful person is put to death and a new person committed to what is right / good / healthful / just arises. In reality / fact, every Sunday we should never omit calling ourselves and each other to consider what is right and what is wrong and to challenge ourselves and our self-deceptions / fantasies / delusions about ourselves. Anything less than that is self-deception. If we can be open to the Holy Spirit’s power to do that, it can only be to our benefit in helping us to see how things really are and we can live in a real / true world and not one of fake news.
God bless us all,