Truth is under attack in our culture today, but not in the way we are all hearing from the media. News stories are full of more and more lies coming from every sector of the world – entertainers, government, sports, religion, etc. Faith in our own judicial system is at an all time low. People manipulate facts and figures to make them whatever they want reality to be.
But this current attack on Truth goes much deeper than this. It is not that people are ignoring Truth in favor of opinion – if this were the case, we could call them out of it and back to the truth. Instead, we are dismantling the very idea of Truth. Phrases like “my truth” have more than simply reflected the reality that opinion matters far more than truth and has become the basis for how we deal with this world; they have changed what “Truth” means.
If I try to debate with someone over a topic, the debate does not end with one person convincing the other of the Truth of the thing but with each sharing their opinions about it and going away happy that both of them are true. This cannot logically be, yet we do it every day.
For Amos, this idea of Truth was represented by a Plumb line. Before the days of levels, which told you if a wall was straight up and down, they simply put a weight on the end of a string and called it a plumb line. Since the line would hang straight due to gravity, they could know whether a wall was “true”, or straight. But Amos’ image is not about a measure for a wall but for God’s people. God would supply the measure, the “Truth”, against which His people would be judged. And that Truth still holds today, however we manipulate our own language and concept of truth.
Oh, that the world might know the measure, the plumb line, of God’s truth. Life would be so much easier then.