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Is all truth God’s truth?

I like Richard Rohr. He’s written some amazing stuff. His insights have helped me. But Rohr says some things that are provocative. He quotes nonChristians. When he sees something in another religion that is true, he’ll use it to make a point.   So I received an email from someone who th…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
I like Richard Rohr. He’s written some amazing stuff. His insights have helped me. But Rohr says some things that are provocative. He quotes nonChristians. When he sees something in another religion that is true, he’ll use it to make a point.
So I received an email from someone who thinks this is a bad idea. They say that if you reference a person whose belief system is opposed to yours, then you’ve aligned yourself with that person. If the person quotes a New Ager, for example, then their credibility is suspect.
It got me thinking. Here’s my question: If someone whose philosophy is very different than mine says something that is true, does that make the truth they’ve spoken any less true?
For example, let’s say a Buddhist friend of mine said, “We men are conflicted and need peace. Generally speaking, we should build our lives around the things that bring us peace.” Does the fact that he’s a Buddhist invalidate what he says?
In court a judge will disallow the testimony of a person whose credibility is questionable. What about questions of faith – if a person’s credibility is questionable, but they say something that is true, is the truth they spoke any less true?
In short, is all truth God’s truth? 

Comments (29)

  • @ Biblical Christian- To accept what you believe to be truth from any other source denies the Holiness of God. It causes confusion and leads to misunderstanding God’s word. II Timothy 2:15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God; a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth”.

    Before The Bible was printed and canonized, what did God leave here as evidence, to be pursued by those seeking Him? Truth? Maybe, or are you that sure that your answers are the only correct answers. Could it be, possibly, that God works way bigger than you or I could fathom? Just a thought. Would love to here your thoughts.

  • My thoughts this depend on the belief system of the person with this idea, if he is a Christian he must be speaking the truth.

    Ha! I like Rohr’s stuff – but don’t necessarily agree with everything he says.

    I do think all truth is God’s truth.

  • To quote George Verwer, founder of OM in reference to being critized for taking OM leaders through 7habits of highly effective people written by a Mormon “if truth was written in the back of a turtle shell I’d rude just to find out what it said”
    He believed all truth is gods truth.
    I believe god can speak truth even if the speaker is unaware God is speaking through them. Think of eternity in their hearts by don richardson, was not the gospel truth embedded in their pagan cultures b4 the missionaries arrived?
    Brenden manning quoted two drunks at a bar saying “how can you love me if you don’t know what hurts me?” he said he heard the lord that day.

  • **mArC** The Schifano Tribe

    Awesome topic. Yes, I too believe all Truth to be God’s. In my quest for Truth, as I searched and ventured in my identity quest to find out the “Show me God, what is true?” I said maybe I am a Buddhist, maybe a New Ager, maybe a Hindu, maybe a….. In this quest for Truth, that is what I found , Truth, manifested,,,Jesus. I heard an old Muslim guy say once, “As I grew up, I noticed that we all claimed to have the truth. Christians, Muslims, or whoever. If The Bible says that if you jump off a cliff, than you will die, and the Quo-ran says that if you step on broken glass, than you will cut your feet, aren’t they both true statements? I don’t believe that all “religions” lead to God. I have found though….that all Truth, leads to Jesus. And Jesus leads to The Father. Jesus said “I am The way, and THE TRUTH, and The Life. No one comes unto The Father, but through me.” This statement from this man, for me, answered the huge, question of “What about all other religions?”
    On a peersonal note, it was when I prayed out of confusion and frustration in my quest for TRUTH, when I said, “Please God, show me what’s The Truth!!?” that he led Marc Schifano, to The Living Truth, Jesus. Man, sorry for rambling on. This was gonna be a one liner from me! Awesome write up Seth.

  • My experience is pretty much that of mArC’s. My quest was for God and Truth and after looking through pretty much everything thing else that other religions and ideas had to offer, I was pointed directly to Jesus.

    On another note…I was raised as a Christian but had lots of my own issues with Jesus and Christianity based on my dysfunctional experience and upbringing. So, the crazy thing that happened was that all these other faiths actually helped me understand what Jesus was trying to say to me without the filter of my issues.

    One of the things that I heard a few years ago that really stuck with me is that Truth is not an idea or a philosophy…Truth is a person…in the person of Jesus Christ.

  • I believe all truth is God’s truth.

    I believe that truth, even from the most unlikely source, is God’s truth… and is a shadow of the Creator, something that points back to him.

    What gets me… is love. Logically, I want to carry it on to say that the human love which we share and sing about and write about is a reflection (however very dimly lit be that mirror) of God, who is love. But… I don’t know, cause we do a really good job at tainting love. I think I believe it though.

  • just read this in the bible, an your blog post reminded me of it:

    “Master,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we tried to stop him, because he is not one of us.”

    “Do not stop him,” Jesus said, “for whoever is not against you is for you.”

  • Truth is truth!
    I cannot imagine that only Christian people speak things that are truth…and only Christian people are worth quoting.

  • The verse that Hope quoted really touched my heart. Jesus is so awesome! Does anyone know the scriptural reference?

    I wanted to add something else to my earlier comment.

    While it is true for me that I really found Jesus after studying many other ideas and religions, there was a point where I had to decide which camp I was in. Once I knew that Jesus was the one for me, I made a conscious decision to focus exclusively on developing a deeper relationship with Him. As part of that process, I prayed and prayed for a higher level of discernment regarding Truth vs. false doctrine and false teachers and through that process of discernment had to discard and dismantle lots of beliefs that I had acquired as a part of my earlier seeking process. I now have a process of testing everything I become aware of against the Word.

    That being said, I also found that I even had to have a higher level of discernment with respect to other Christian teachers. Now, I am very very selective about what I allow my eyes and ears to consume.

    Love this topic and thanks for everyone sharing!

  • Once God spoke to me through a fortune cookie. I immediately dismissed it as unacceptable form of communication. He gently asked if I wanted to limit the ways He spoke to me. If God can speak through a donkey, why not a fortune cookie?

    Jesus is the Truth and He can speak to us through our circumstances, our pets, non-believers and, yes, even through fortune cookies. Do I look for His truth whenever I order Chinese…no. But truth can be revealed to us in the most unlikely ways and places. You only have to be open to the Word of God wherever it manifests itself.

  • Yep. Why else would Paul quote a pagan poet or refer to the countless gods the Greeks were worshiping in his famous “sermon” on Mars Hill?

    Gabe Lyons addresses this in his new book The Next Christians, calling this type of Christian, one who seeks to redeem the world, a believer who is “provoked, not offended” by culture.

  • **mArC** The Schifano Tribe

    Awesome stuff Glenn ,Judith, and Jeff. Everyone, this has been the most exciting blog and feedback I have read in a while. Truth is a person, Jesus Christ, I love that. amen and amen

  • The verse Hope Mendola quoted was great.

    Here’s where I come down: “Everything in the Bible is truth, but not all truth is found in the Bible.” For instance, it’s true the earth is 93 million miles from the sun, but that fact is not in the Bible.

    I have a number of Indian friends who are Hindu. Indians are big on the concept of “journey.” As we study the Bible together I tell them we are on a journy to find truth. Which we are. In whatever form, wherever it is, whoever said it, it doesn’t matter: all truth is truth.

    “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.” (James 2:19)

  • I agree with all the above, with one caution. I’ve heard people use this statement to validate something they believe to be true without authentic validation.

  • Hi Seth.

    Truth is found in Holy Writ and those moments where obsessive compulsive people go away.

    I respect you.

  • Yes, all truth is God’s truth. What is true is true. If a non Christian said that murdering is wrong, it wouldn’t make it any less true. God reveals truth to nonbelievers all the time, to draw them to Himself. For instance, before we are saved, we have to come to the truth that sin separates us from God. Then comes salvation, but if you never knew that first truth, then you wouldnt understand what you were being saved from. Sometimes truth is distorted, and I most definitely wouldn’t take everything they say as truth, but neither would I take everything anyone says as truth unless it matches up with Jesus and the Bible. So I guess my answer would be use discernment when quoting anything, whether the person is a Christian or not, and see how it matches up to the Word

  • Is all truth God’s truth? Absolutely Not! All things are not of God. Your analogy of truth is incorrect. There are truths in nature, science, physical and the spiritual realm. But it doesn’t follow that the truth in these things are all of God. God’s truth is divine and He alone sets into motion the truth of His word. He created us and this world but did not restrict the thinking of man and that is where confusion originates. GOD IS TRUTH! John 14:6 “I am the way, the TRUTH and the life; no man cometh unto the Father but by me”. To accept what you believe to be truth from any other source denies the Holiness of God. It causes confusion and leads to misunderstanding God’s word. II Timothy 2:15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God; a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth”.

  • Anon – God isn’t defined by evidence. Eph 2:8-9 “By grace are ye saved through faith; that not of yourself, it is the gift of God”. We accept Christ through faith that He is who He says He is. We try to put Him in a box because we are finite beings and cannot understand the infinite. In Eph. God said that, “He knew us before the foundations of the world”. It is impossible to understand God because of our own limitations. Even a clock is “true” twice a day God’s truth is “true” for all time. God’s truth is that no matter where you are and no matter your situation God’s truth applies to each and every one of us. You cannot compare man’s truth to God’s truth. God works in mysterious ways and man cannot understand God’s truth without knowing Him personally. Before the printed word Jesus walked this earth and men believed by sight; after the cross His spirit indwelled those who accepted Him by faith. Finite logic cannot be applied to an infinite God.

  • Well, here’s some more thoughts all can “battle” with. As an author, I write with a purpose in mind—to get across to my readers what I believe. If I quote someone favorably, say they have great spiritual insight, and recommend their works for reading, I am responsible for where it takes my readers. For instance, if I mention author/speaker David Spangler in a positive light, or use a non-controversial quote favorably from his book, Reflections on the Christ, what have I just done? Without any warning as to what he really believes, I have led my readers to the conclusion that I believe Spangler is a wonderful Christian author and that his insights agree with Scripture and will be helpful to them. To discern what I’ve written, my readers need to ask some very crucial questions: Who is David Spangler and what does he believe? Are his beliefs influencing what this author is teaching through her book? Will he lead me closer to Jesus Christ and what the Bible says, or will he lead me down a path into complete darkness? The Bereans were commended for testing daily what Paul was telling them (Acts 17: 11).

    Emergent leader, Leonard Sweet, quotes David Spangler glowingly in his book, Quantum Spirituality, without explanation of who Spangler is. For an example of the problem your question leaves, let’s take a quick look at Spangler whom Sweet claims is a “New Light” leader. David Spangler is a very prominent New Age leader and medium who was a co-director of the Findhorn Foundation. The community of Findhorn which is located in Scotland is considered to be “one of the most successful New Age communities” (Eileen Campbell & H. H. Brennan, The Aquarian Guide to the New Age, The Aquarian Press, Wellingborough, England, 1990, pg. 342). At Findhorn you will find people who are in continual contact with “nature spirits.” This is the “ordinary” life of those involved in the occult.

    Spangler carries on regular conversations with his disembodied spirit guide, whom he calls “John.” What has Spangler learned from his contact with his spirit guide and others who use occult practices? In Reflections on the Christ, Spangler writes such things as: “Christ is the same force as Lucifer.” “The reason man has come to fear Lucifer is not so much that he represents evil as because he represents experience which causes us to grow and to move beyond the levels where we have been.” Lucifer is literally the angel of experience.“When you are working with the laws of manifestation you are in essence manifesting a Luciferic principle…” (pgs. 40-41). On page 42 he writes: “Lucifer prepares man in all ways for the experience of Christhood and the Christ prepares man for the experience of God.”

    How can Spangler say these things? Because he believes in a different Christ. Like Richard Rohr, he believes in a “cosmic Christ,” a “christ or cosmic consciousness,” that permeates all creation and from which everything was derived. This is the christ found in “Esoteric Christianity.” It is the very essence of Eastern/occultic mysticism which has ties to Gnosticism, Hinduism, Buddhism, the books of Jewish mysticism-the Cabala, witchcraft, Native American shamanism, as well as Babylonian, Egyptian, Persian and Sumerian beliefs and practices.

    As Spangler points out: “The New Age is essentially a time in planetary history when the fruits of revelation given and anchored by Jesus come into being. In human terms, this means it is a time when we learn to be at one with God ourselves, to be Christs ourselves. This is also the revelation of esoteric disciplines, which have always been esoteric because they dealt with the reality of man’s inner divinity and how to actualize it, rather than with the forms and doctrines relating to forming relationships with an external deity or Christ…The true Christian has only rarely been seen because a Christian has largely been defined as someone who worships and follows Christ as God, but not someone who actually follows him to the source and realization of one’s own divinity and godhood and Christhood, and then is himself a revelation of this fact. Jesus is a way-shower, not the end or the goal. He proclaimed the true identity of man. Can we as well” (pg. 29, emphasis mine)?

    Reading New Age/occult works you ‘ll find the authors despise the “old story” and mock the “Western concept” of God derived out of what they perceive as the failure of “rationalism.” They believe the Bible contains “truths” just like any other book of religion, fantasy or fairy tale. In their eyes, Lucifer is the light-bearer and Jesus was a man who became god as we all can do through various techniques of meditation (hearing the “still, small voice of God” in an altered state of consciousness and becoming our “Higher, True, Divine Self through a life of sacrifice and suffering). Telling us that we need to get rid of the “false self” in order to find our “true self” they wear a cloak of humility while preaching the same lie Satan used to deceive Eve—you will be like God (see Genesis 3). Emergent leaders Brian McLaren and Rob Bell are well aware of this. By redefining Christian terminology such as the atonement, the cross, sin, salvation, Jesus, Christ, God, etc., New Age/Emergent teachings have infiltrated numerous churches and are deceiving millions.

    While God can turn the evil things people do into good, would God use tea leaves, tarot cards, communication with the dead, mediums, psychics, etc. to give you his “truth?” Would he use the beliefs and practices he condemns (Deuteronomy 18:10-22, Leviticus 20.6, etc.)? Did God ever say to build an idol so he could speak through it? The church has been asleep far too long. Terrible things have happened in the name of God or Christ. Harsh legalism has burdened down many. But we would do well to remember that the gospel God entrusted to us is not at fault, sinful human beings are. Turning to another gospel is not the answer.

    The misleading question, “is all truth God’s truth,” negates the many warnings Jesus and the apostles gave us concerning false christs, false prophets of righteousness, and a different gospel (Matthew 24:1-32, Galations 1:6-9, 2 Cor. 11, Acts 20:29-31, Rev. 2:18-29, etc.). A similar question with the same consequences is the one Satan used to deceive Eve in the garden, “Did God really say?” It ultimately undermines the unique authority of Scripture, mocks the unique divinity of Jesus Christ, and causes mass confusion within the church, which is what Satan relishes.

  • Claire,

    Point taken about seeking truth in mediums and idolatry. My thought was that God spoke to Balaam through his donkey, but if someone raised donkeys and sold them as prophets…that would be a distortion. God can and does speak to us in a variety of ways that are of his choosing, not ours. We are to seek Him through one channel and one channel only, that of His son, our mediator and high priest, Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit. Wasn’t the Spirit supposed to lead us into all truth?

    I’d also like to caution those who have challenged many of the ideas while choosing to remain anonymous. Doesn’t that speak to truth or the lack thereof? After all, this is a safe place to dissent and disagree…let’s use our real names, please.


  • Agree with Glenn. I think that Claire needs to be re assured that this is a safe place where Jesus is the Christ. HE alone is Lord. Glenn , where can I get one of those donkeys?

  • I was pleasantly surprised to come back to the website and find people writing down their thoughts to me. I would be very interested in hearing your experience with New Age deception, Judith, if you feel free to share that. I also appreciated your sincerity.

    Mark, you’re right, Jesus is the only mediator between God and man. He is the only way and Truth. And the Holy Spirit guide us into His truth. You’re also right that God can use ways we can’t always comprehend to bring us closer to him. But what many seem to ignore or forget is that “experience,” as wonderful as it may seem, is subjective. That’s why we need to test everything against Scripture. The Holy Spirit inspired the apostles to write down their first-hand accounts about what happened in the life of Jesus. That’s why, as “Biblical Christian” pointed out, we’re told: “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” That’s also the reason Timothy was told to hold on to what he had learned from infancy concerning the Scriptures (2 Timothy 3:14-15). Also, when he was tempted in the desert, Jesus referred to what was “written.”

    Many use the first few verses of Matthew 7, which is describing a form of hypocritical or self-righteous judging, to say we can’t make judgments concerning what someone is teaching. They leave out the rest of Matthew 7 where the Lord says:

    Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter
    the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of
    my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that
    day, ‘Lord, Lord,’ did we not prophesy in your name, and
    in your name drive out demons and perform many
    miracles? Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never know
    you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

    Judging hypocritically and discernment are being confused. Making judgments as to whether or not something agrees with Scripture is a necessary part of discernment. We’re all sinners in need of a Savior, but Jesus made it very clear that judgments of this kind are necessary. Otherwise, why would Jesus have bothered to warn the church of Thyatira not to tolerate the false teachings of the prophetess Jezebel and not to learn “Satan’s so-called deep secrets” (Rev. 2:18-29)? They had to make a judgment as to whether or not Jezebel’s teachings were acceptable. They weren’t. The church of Ephesus was commended by Jesus for hating the practices of the Nicolaitans. Again, judgments had to be made as to what was right and what was wrong.

    Anyway, something to think about. Oh, and Glenn, thanks for caring! [ I need to ask though, just why do you feel you need a donkey–just kidding, right?]


  • Short answer to your question, Is all truth God’s truth?
    Unequivocally, YES!
    Does that mean that the Whole Truth can be found outside Jesus Christ?
    Unequivocally, NO!
    Lastly, is there a longer answer to your blogpost above, ie, are there cautions and discernment we must use in quoting, using, disseminating the true thoughts and ideas coming from other faith expressions?
    Absolutely, yes.
    (When you think about it, Satan is a Master of Partial Truth!)

    We must always and everywhere be careful in handling the truth.
    Because those who are weak, seeking, unsure, ungrounded can be influenced by our words.
    Which must always give us great pause.
    We will be held accountable for every word we have spoken on this earth.
    And, nowhere is that more true than in the words we speak about God and His truth that go out to others.
    Certainly gives me continual pause…
    Love to all!

  • And, yes, Glenn…totally agree.
    God has spoken to me through fortune cookies and a lot stranger things.
    Once we are grounded in Christ and grow ever deeper into the depth, width, height, and all-surpassing omnipotence of His presence and love for us, we begin to see evidence of Him and hear His voice in every single occurrence and element of our day.
    It is a continually mind-blowing way to live!
    God is not confined.
    God is not contained.
    God IS in all!
    That is not pantheism.
    That is truth, grounded in Christ!

  • Whee-hoo for the exciting, exhilarating, exuberant ride, not walk, that is our potential with Jesus Christ.
    But, there is a clear progression:
    First, as Watchman Nee says, we sit.
    Then, we stand.
    Then, we walk.
    And, then, my friends, we start skipping and running!
    Whee-hoo…I’m in the skipping and running stage!

  • Too many Christians put God in the “Bible box!”
    It is the Holy Spirit who wrote the Bible.
    It is the Holy Spirit who speaks through the Bible.
    And, it is the Holy Spirit who worked in the Old Testament and the New Testament and in these latter days…and He can not be boxed in!
    He will never refute or go against Holy Writ!
    But, He is not solely contained in Holy Writ!
    However, those who do not believe this are often blind to any view outside of THEIR, and I emphasize, “THEIR” biblical view of God.
    Enough said…

  • PS: Please forgive for the tone and especially the last line of my comment: “Enough said.”
    I am fired up for battle this morning and the anticipation and emotion has been so intense I inadvertently used this venue as a temporary release valve.
    I stand behind everything I said in my comment.
    But, it was certainly not delivered in a humble, and gentle spirit, but instead reeked of arrogance.
    I seek forgiveness from all on this thread.

  • I stand on everything I’ve written on this thread about truth.
    But, I do hear you, loud and clear, on the New Age thing, Claire.
    Trust me…first-hand experience has keyed me into the extreme danger and deception of New Age thinking.
    And, I agree with you totally that it has infiltrated the church in a major way and will continue to make ever greater inroads.
    Satan is behind the “light-defusing” scrim of New Age.
    And, His unholy-trinity alliance with the Anti-Christ and False Prophet will fall right in line with everything New Age propounds and adores.
    Many, many Christians are naive as the day is long about what New Age is about and the great danger it poses!
    It deeply grieves my heart.

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.

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