Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Truth versus Fact

Most people seem to think that truth and fact are synonymous, or at least that you can’t have one without the other. Nothing could be further from the truth - and that’s a fact.

In an earlier post I suggested that nobody except God knows the entire truth. Any person seeking truth can only go by the information available to him. When different information is available to someone else, we make the mistake of thinking that truth is subjective. It’s not. Truth is truth, but knowledge is limited.

In addition to this, facts can be manipulated and presented in a way that points away from the truth without actually lying. Corporate statisticians, pollsters, and lawyers are all quite adept at this.

Conversely, allegories, parables, and even fairy tales can contain no actual fact, but lead the way to a deep truth. Aesop, the Grimms, and Jesus were good examples of this.
So don’t be fooled into thinking that facts always reveal the truth, or that a story contains no truth without facts.

“What is truth?”
~Pontius Pilate - John 18:38

My thanks to Professor Hannah B. Harvey of East Tennessee State University for the spark that inspired this post.


  1. What is truth ? For you to know that I am telling the truth, there has to be a truth, and a truth for you and I to know.... I remember listening to this tape, given to me by a friend while I was searching for truth. It has stuck with me ever since, I remember where I was driving up to North Conway listening to it, I reference it all the time. Disguise a little silly, but worth listening to when you have the time.http://lionandlambministry.com/index.php/liontube/video/442/The-Chair-by-Frank-Peretti---10-21-05-Full-Version