As people understand and apply God’s truth to every area of their lives, change happens. Why?
God’s Truth is like a seed planted in the ground. With water, sun and time the seed grows into a plant and then into a tree and produces fruit. The fruit that grows is a direct representative of the initial seed that was planted.
Poverty as seen in our world today is like a piece of rotten fruit. Hunger, corruption, hopelessness, broken marriages, abuse, violence and injustice are all expressions of poverty and each is a product of lies that have been planted. If our desire as Christians is to see injustice and poverties of all kinds end we must start by planting seeds of truth.
What is a seed of truth?
Jesus affirms in John 8: 31-32 that when a person holds to Christ’s teaching, he knows the truth, and the truth sets him free. A seed of truth is a belief that aligns with the teachings of Christ. Here are some biblical seeds of truth about human beings:
Made in God’s image (Gen. 1:27)
Created with a purpose (Jer. 29:11)
Has value and worth. (Psalm 139:13-15)
Created to work (Gen. 2:15)
Made to have fellowship with God (1 Cor. 1:9)
Made to have fellowship with one another (Rom. 12:10)
Created to serve one another (John13:14)
Intended to love others (John 13:34)
These truths as presented in scripture transform the way a person lives. For example if a person sees the value in each human life (their own and others) then they will live in a way that respects, values and cares for others. Such actions result in families that love, parents that provide and communities that equip for the greater society and the glory of God. The concluding action of caring is based off of the initial conviction that all of life is sacred, a seed of truth.
However, if this truth about the value of man is distorted and twisted into a lie, then man lives in violence, selfishness and resentment towards one another. Gendercide (or sex selective abortions), neglect, abuse and exploitation are all examples of fruit that has roots in various fundamental lies.
Though always complex and often difficult to distinguish, the roots of poverty are directly connected to twisted lies. A simple lie in the heart and mind of a person can profoundly impact the way they live and view others living around them.
As we seek to end the various forms of poverty we find in our world, we must begin by identifying the lies of our culture. Like any careful gardener, Christians must be in the business of de-rooting lies and planting seeds of truth. It’s God’s truth that will change the way we live and bring transformation to our world and the world around us.Image courtesy of aresauburn / Flickr.com