When people believe there is a truth, the goal is for me to be detached and objective so that I can objectively, fairly and justly present the truth to you. That’s the ethical stance that is persuasive for those who believe there is a truth.
For those who don’t believe there is truth, if I’m objective and distant, then what I am is boring. What they want is authenticity. Because if they believe there is no truth, I can at least tell them what is true for me. And then they will listen to what’s authentic and engaged.
So the personal narrative becomes more important because it’s a common space of engagement. I’ll listen to you because you’re being authentic, and when I listen to that, I actually hear a true testimony of the work of God.
That positions Christianity in the perfect place for the postmodern ears. We’ve been dumbed down and numbed by wars and etc, that we should reject truth because we’ve had too many people sell us truth, and they’re wrong or lying, and we’re dying.
But we actually have a story. Not “let me give you a narrative.” But that is the story. I don’t care if you believe in truth. All I know is this thing that happened. You don’t have to even believe it. I’m just telling you what happened.
Jesus died for you. He loves you, and He rose for you.
Adapted from the podcast discussion with RINGSIDE PREACHERS and Dr. David Schmitt from the latest special edition podcast “Preaching the Image”. Listen to the whole episode for more thoughts on visual verses spoken pictures, struggles on the mind of young pastors, and more!