Today I was honored to preach during the weekly chapel service at my denomination’s headquarters. I found it to be quite serendipitous that the Gospel lesson was from John 8:31-36, which speaks to knowing the truth and being set free. I’ve written about that before and it didn’t go so well. Or maybe it did because it pissed some people off…
Below is my sermon from today that explores truth, what is true, how it sets us free and why it pisses us off..
“The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.”[i]
This quote has long been attributed to leaders in activist movements without specifically knowing who was the first to say it. Regardless of who said it, it bears repeating: “The truth will set you free, but first, it will piss you off.”
This leads me to three questions:
- What is truth?
- How does it set you free?
- And why does it piss you off?
Today’s gospel text helps in answering these questions and it does so quite simply and one might even say, quite succinctly.
Jesus is the truth.
He sets us free from bondage to sin.
This pisses us off because it goes against our human nature and calls us into a different way of being – one that is not theoretical, but actual because it is a way of being that follows the person of Jesus Christ. It causes us to change course; to die to ourselves and live anew in ways that are about loving God, loving others and loving self.
However, in true Rozella form, I can’t stop or even begin there. Let’s back up to some personal reflections. Continue reading