Monday, February 07, 2011

Certainty and Truth

I speak the truth in Christ - I am not lying, my conscience confirms it in the Holy Spirit -

Romans 9:1

In our adult Sunday School class yesterday, our scripture was Romans 9:1-5. But the idea that Paul expresses in the first verse of this passage arrested me. We did not get very far beyond it during our discussion. Oh, to have such certitude, to know the "truth in Christ" on matters of great importance in our lives.

I asked whether this sort of certitude belonged to Paul alone because he was special, someone "called to be an apostle and set apart for the Gospel of God," as Paul describes himself in the very first verse of Romans. A mature man in our class, long a Presbyterian, a Fuller seminary graduate in fact, said that because of this special call of Paul to be an Apostle, it was given to him to have such certainty. This man's implication was that it was not so much for the rest of us, except perhaps (he hinted) for the clergy.

A younger man, not given to contention, someone who asks questions not to make a point but to learn, a man raised a Roman Catholic, spoke right up and asked, "Aren't we all called? If so, why should we not also aspire to the certainty of God's truth that Paul describes?"

Why not indeed?

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