Nena Arias | August 16, 2021
“A fool is in love with his own opinion…Truthful words will stand the test of time, but one day every lie will be seen for what it is.”
(Proverbs 12:15, 19)
It seems these days, in our country, it has become the trend for people to speak out and assert things without any real authority, yet they impact us in many critical ways. They make assertions based on their emotions, or “what they think or feel” is the right perspective or thing to do.
Everything impacts the brain, and our brain is what directs our character. The values and information you willingly accept is who you will become. So, apart from the forgiveness of sin and receiving a regenerated heart through Jesus Christ, the most important activity a person can engage in is the renewing of their mind to take it to higher levels of understanding and there is no higher level than the mind of God. The apostle Paul puts it this way in Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Don’t allow the world trends to dictate to you about what is right and how you should live. Seek a higher authority only found in God who is our Creator. By this, I don’t mean merely become religious. In seeking God’s wisdom, you will acquire the highest form of knowledge known to humans. He is the highest authority in all matters. God has earned the respect of being the highest authority. What he says, he does, and we can count on his written Word—the Bible. It is the most reliable and trustworthy source known to man. Jesus said in Matthew 28:18, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.”
So first, when it comes to emitting a thought or opinion, let’s define the kind of authority humans can acquire. What qualifies a person to speak with authority? Do they need a college or university degree to emit thoughts, ideas and concepts that are solidly true? Perhaps in some cases this is true but, in most cases, it depends on how knowledgeable the person is in what they are talking about. They must pay their dues in acquiring true knowledge. In life, people always have the option to self-educate. Especially in our generation with so much information at our fingertips, anyone can become truly knowledgeable about any given subject if they know how to think critically.
There is a structure to critical thinking. I could not describe it better than this dictionary definition as follows:
“The process of critical thinking is associated with accuracy, logic, depth, fairness, credibility, and intellectual clarity. The word ‘critical’ is not used to imply negativity or pessimism; critical thinking merely means that one must not automatically accept the validity of the information he or she is given. The definition of critical thinking is a mental process of reviewing clear, rational thoughts based on evidence to reach an answer or a conclusion.”
The first thing a critical thinker must ascertain is the accuracy of the information they are considering. This means, what is the person’s source of authority? How trustworthy is it? How thorough and how deep does it go? How knowledgeable is the person of that source? How credible is the evidence or proof provided on the subject? By the way, the only true sources to draw knowledge from are God or man. Your choice is, do you want to draw knowledge from a finite limited human mind or from the infinite limitless mind of God?
Nowadays, it seems like too many people have lost the important process of critical thinking and are too quick to emit unresearched opinions. They find it too easy to just repeat second-hand opinions of others or talking points of things that sound like they could or should be true. But when analyzed, it is merely wishful thinking or expressing where we wish we could be instead of where we truly are, so we know how to fix it.
In the face of this confusion, we must come to the realization that there are true absolutes, we can’t live without them so the sooner we stop denying them the better off we will be as a society. There is not “your truth” or “my truth”. There is only one truth. In other words, it is either truth or it isn’t.
Jesus’s teachings are very precise and concise. He doesn’t make them very wordy because he wants us to understand what he is saying. He put it this way: “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32). And then he spelled it out very clearly this way, “I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the father except through me” (John 14:6).
Do you want to be truly knowledgeable in all of life? Study the Word of God and then you can have a good filter to study anything else because the Word of the Lord will be your anchor.
“Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.”