Many people entertain the belief that all religions are viable pathways. Often, the analogy of people blindly grasping various parts of an elephant is invoked in order to supposedly represent how the major religions have elements of truth.
However, they fail to realize two things:
- Truth by nature is exclusive and not inclusive.
- Truth demands objective evidence and cannot be blindly based on subjective feelings.
“Faith is not belief held in the absence of evidence but rather a commitment to what one already believes when an insatiable appetite for more evidence is unmet.” - B. Hearn
Everyone in the analogy has access to the same elephant so ideally people should actively pursue reality instead of remaining stationary and accepting a false understanding of reality. Unfortunately, many people are content with their false understanding of reality, which begs the question of whether or not truth really matters to them. It really boils down to the fact that many people value tolerance more than they value truth.
John 14:6 makes it clear that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. (John 14:6, NASB)
In John 8:31-36, we see something fascinating.
So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never yet been enslaved to anyone; how is it that You say, ‘You will become free’?”Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed. (John 8:31-36, NASB)
Jesus first says that those who abound in His word will know the truth, and the truth will make them free. From this, we see two things: His word is the truth, and the truth can set people free.
Interestingly, the Jews replied that they have never been enslaved to anyone and that they didn’t need to set free. We know that the Jews were enslaved by the Egyptian Empire, the Assyrian Empire, the Babylonian Empire, the Medo-Persian Empire, the Grecian Empire, and at the time they were under the Roman Empire. This shows us that people can easily forget reality when they’re trying to defend themselves from the truth.
Jesus then clarifies what He meant by telling them that they were slaves of sin. He goes on to say that those who the Son sets free are free indeed. Earlier we see Jesus saying the truth sets people free, here we see Him saying the Son sets people free. Jesus is claiming to be the truth. When we put down our guard against the truth, we can allow the one who embodies truth to set us free.