I came across this question on Facebook the other day – “what site do you go to find the truth?”  Because I know this young man to be deeply committed to Christ and to pastoring youth, I took the question to mean “what site most represents Biblical truth?”  Immediately, I responded with a site that I thought offered resources and articles by those whom I thought investigated topics thoroughly, objectively and consistently. This of course was based on my understanding of how Biblical truth should be examined and attained.  Afterwards, it dawned on me that not all would agree with me.

In the advent of relativism and post-modernism, the rallying cry of evangelicals is that truth is not relative.  God’s truth does not change.  Some would cite that the problem is that we are measuring God’s truth against shifting standards of our own making and compromising that truth (notice that I am avoiding labels).  Yes, I do agree with that.  I do hold to the fact that God Himself is truth (John 14:6) and His word is truth (John 17:17).  As a theologically conservative evangelical, I do uphold that God has communicated His propositional truth in a written format which is the Bible.  There is no subjective nature to what He has communicated.

The problem is that our truth is relative, or rather our measuring rod by which we understand truth.  It is our epistemology, if you will.  We will never be able to hold to an absolute, perfected standard by which we can most avowedly say “I have truth in all cases”.  Now before you go condemning me as one on the outer rings of E-darkness, what I mean by that is we will always have some sort of subjective tendency to our approach to understanding truth .  Why? Because we have a colander through which we sift our understanding of how to arrive at what the Bible is communicating.  We have presuppositions and doctrinal affiliations and life experiences that all weave their way into the fabric of our understanding.  In some cases, our understanding is sourced in extra-Biblical dogma and tradition that will dictate how we arrive at divine truth.

Any evangelical with a decent commitment to understanding what God has conveyed through His word, will contend that Biblical truth is the standard and our job is to understand what God is conveying.  “Biblical truth” in itself then becomes relative because we apply whatever methodology we have considered to be the arbiter of WHAT God has communicated, HOW God has communicated and HOW He continues to communicate.  Biblical truth according to God’s communication is accurate.  Biblical truth according to our understanding is less than accurate.  For this reason, I have even grown weary of the usage of the term “Biblical” because it generally means ‘according to my understanding based on my epistemology’.

What I am NOT saying, is that we cannot ascertain what truth is according to how God has revealed it.  What I am NOT saying is that there is no way we can know the sine qua non of Christianity.  God has not changed nor has His revelation nor His communication.  He revealed Himself progressively throughout Scripture, ultimately pointing to His revelation in Christ.  Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). We cannot adjust the work and person of the triune God to accommodate our mortal sensibilities.  Nor can we dismiss how God has spoken to us authoritatively which is His inscribed revelation, His written word.  Some do this, I believe, to their detriment.

Therefore, we do need an objective standard by which to determine what is appropriate to the means of God’s communication.  God did not condescend to reveal Himself to humanity so that we can apply whatever methods we deem reasonable to understand Him according to His communication to us.  To reduce the relativism of our understanding, the ascertaining of truth must be grounded in the reality of how God has communicated to us.  And I believe that communication is ensconced in language.  That means, as we read the Bible, we have to employ a hermeneutic that is consistent with the divine author’s intent transmitted through the human author’s intent to understand the language.

One of the most aggravating components of our modern Bibles is the fracturing of communication through segmented pieces known as chapters and verses.  What was designed to facilitate understanding actually can contribute to disjointed learning.  The tendency to spiritualize that fragmentation further moves an understanding of communication away from the center of its intended truth.  But as John Chrysostom espoused in reaction against overly allegorical renderings of the text, “attempts to understand must always be subject to the indispensable historical kernel that anchors the text in empirical reality”.  The reality is what God intended and who He is.  In his essay entitled The Biblical Concept of Truth, Roger Nicole argues that “the full concept of Biblical truth” involves three essential components to understanding the truthfulness of divine communication.

1) Factuality – the expression of truth that conforms to reality in opposition to lies or errors

2) Faithfulness – reliability on the person expected to perform according to a promise, in this case God.

3) Completeness – a summation that is definitive and provisional, which is specific to fulfillment in Christ

He contends that the three must be held in balance and stressing one over the other, or treating them in isolation, will lead to improper attention to the other strands.  This suggests an imbalanced understanding of what God has intended.  I do think this happens quite often because our subjective natures will motivate us to do exactly that, in my opinion.

So what do we do with our subjective tendencies to relativize Scripture according to our epistemology?  First, I contend that we have to distinguish between dogma and doctrine, holding the former loosely and examining the latter critically.   Second, never become so comfortably convinced in our determination of truth that we become unteachable, especially concerning the areas of essential doctrine.  To be honest, it bothers me when some so arrogantly and adamantly insist they have a corner on truth, and particularly when they are based on standards that inconsistent with God’s mechanism for how He has communicated His truth.   Third, I think we have to an increased awareness that our understanding will tend to be relative and subjective. That in of of itself will probably not completely relieve any imbalance on our part, but without it we might be rushing headlong down a dark and deviating trail.    Fourth, never lose sight of the starting point of divine communication, which is God not our understanding.  Lastly, have the humility to admit our fallibity and short-sightedness.

So instead of espousing a corner on Biblical truth, perhaps a more honest approach would be an investigator of Biblical truth, like the Bereans in Acts 17.  I think that would be a really honest thing to do lest we confuse any error on our part with absolute truth on God’s part.

    27 replies to "Is Truth Really Not Relative?"

    • Tyler

      This is something I have been thinking about recently, because I have become a presuppositionalist with regard to biblical epistemology, so my ultimate criterion is not autonomous reason, but the Word. But it seems difficult to make sure that is an “objective” interpretation…doing my best to let Scripture interpret itself is the only solution I have for now, but it’s just kind of a ‘spiral’ because every verse/passage will be read through my own lens…grr…


    • Daniel Spratlin

      What was the site you suggested?

    • Lisa Robinson
    • Drew K

      Excellent post Lisa. Felt like I was back in school! Putting in to practice your suggestions would go along way in achieving “unity of the faith.” I think of Francis Schaeffer’s concept of knowing “true truth” but not inexhaustibly so.

    • AcesLucky

      If God’s truth does not change, why is Jesus (presumably God in the flesh) so radically different than the Old Testament god? And why when Jesus says whatever you pray in my name “I will do it” turns out to yield dead children (attempting to cure the sick) when he promises to cure?

      Isn’t truth in a religious sense just metaphor and not actual? And doesn’t that make it relative to anybody’s interpretation?

    • Lisa Robinson

      Aces, in a sense Jesus did introduce a discontinuity from the Old Testament in terms of God would relate to His people. Yet, there is tremendous continuity as well. God was incredibly gracious to those He called His own, when they rebelled against Him. But then He had to judge the rebellion. Even in that judgment, He made known that He would still be faithful to His plan and make provision.

      Jesus’ earthly ministry primarily showed mankind the heart of God, and particularly to those who had been excluded from the arena of His blessings, primarily Gentiles. The care He exhibited for the disenfranchised had also been the intention in the Mosaic covenant. So as He came to fulfill the Mosaic Law, he changed the mechanics of how God would appropriate blessings, which encompassed a broader range of people than existed in the Old Testament. He also provided those who would be included as the people of God with the means to relate to God in a whole different way. That is the discontinuity.

      Yet there is continuity in terms of the heart and plan of God. And lest one thinks the Jesus of the gospels differs from the God who judges, there will come a time for judgment by God the Son, for those who have not trusted Him So again, there is continuity.

    • AcesLucky

      Thank you Lisa.

      Perhaps I wasn’t as clear as hoped by my questions. The title takes on the question of whether “truth” is or is not really relative (as opposed to absolute).

      Bear with me: I am not so much concerned with the continuity or discontinuity of the message, but the *truthfulness* of the message.

      My example of Jesus vs the Old Testament god probably threw you off; my mistake. But the other example, about the dead children from faithful parents praying to Jesus should have been right on target.

      Whether the Old Testament god or the New Testament Jesus states outright “whatever you ask in my name, I will do it” this only becomes an issue of subjective interpretation (relative truth) when it DOESN’T work… and thus the dead children.

      Clearer now? If it worked as promised, it would be an absolute, like the laws of Nature. It’s only when it doesn’t work does it become a matter of interpretation, context, parable, poor translation, cultural bias, and the host of other reasons given for scripture no longer meaning what it says.

      And thus my question: “Isn’t truth in a religious sense just metaphor and not actual?”

      Because if it were actual, it would mean what it says, and would work as stated.

    • Devin F

      Aceslucky or whever you are,

      It is no newsflash that God does not answer certain prayers. For your own reference you can refer to Jesus’ last moment on the cross and the two individuals that prayed to him there. One of those individuals did not receive any reply from Christ, while the other individual was guaranteed entry into paradise. You should also refer to the scripture where Christ’s disciples were unable to cast out unclean spirits.

      With your base or carnal mind you will be unable to comprehend that. This is why Jesus Christ states that unless you are born again you will be even be able to “see” the kingdom of heaven. (John 3:3) I think you are getting a little off topic though. You are attacking the scriptures, which have survived the test of time and all of history’s complications. I would advise that you either get back to the topic of truth’s relativity and argue that, or surrender your mind according to faith (not understanding) to Jesus Christ.

      A. W. Tozer speaks of a truth that is beyond comprehension in his book “God’s Pursuit of Man.” That is the truth that you cannot perceive among other things in this life, because your mind was not a fit instrument designed to understand things in its corrupted state. Regardless of your arguements you are still a sinner, and a sinner in need of redemption and forgiveness. God is willing to give that to you now if you will surrender.

      Try matching up the relativity of truth with the theory of logic. Science is not a comprehensive book of facts, but an art that mankind uses to understand his surroundings. It is no wonder that the bible says that fool says there is no God. (Psalms)

      I hope that any of this helps you even if the cost was a moment of internal anguish.

      Devin F

    • AcesLucky

      @Devin F,

      You wrote:

      “It is no newsflash that God does not answer certain prayers. For your own reference you can refer to…”

      No need. You are simply agreeing with me.

      Now, given the fact that we agree, that “God does not answer certain prayers,” then based on the bible either Jesus is wrong, God is wrong, or scripture is wrong. Here’s why; here’s what Jesus says in the bible:

      “And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.”
      John 14:12-14 (KJV)

      “And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.”
      Matt 21:21-22 (KJV)

      “Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
      Mark 11:24 (KJV)

      “Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.
      Matt 18:19 (KJV)

      “If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.”
      Mark 9:23 (KJV)

      “…for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”
      Matt 17:20 (KJV)

      There. I’ve just cited six places where Jesus openly and clearly reiterates nothing shall be impossible to you, because “If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.”

      The fact that you acknowledge that “It is no newsflash that God does not answer certain prayers” is a demonstration that either:
      a.) Jesus is wrong
      b.) God is wrong (or disagrees with what Jesus says); or
      c.) Scripture is wrong

      Either way, my “carnal mind” speaks the truth. And thus my question remains: “Isn’t truth in a religious sense just metaphor and not actual?”

      Because if it were actual, it would mean what it says, and would work as stated. We are in agreement that it does not.

      You wrote:
      “A. W. Tozer speaks of a truth that is beyond comprehension in his book “God’s Pursuit of Man.” That is the truth that you cannot perceive..”


      If it is a truth “beyond comprehension” then he is agreeing that he does not comprehend it, and thus could not comprehend it to be the truth. To say something is true without knowing it, is lying. Why would you ask me to follow a lie?

      You also wrote: “Regardless of your arguements [sic] you are still a sinner…”

      If stating or following the truth is a sin, then you would be correct. However if you mean it as some sort of transgression against a god, perhaps we’ll let the god make that judgment (unless you are duly qualified as perfect and can stand in his stead). Thank you.

    • cherylu


      I can think of five other Scripture sections that put qualifiers on the verses on prayer that you listed above. They give definite reasons why sometimes prayers are not answered.

      I Peter 3:7 “You husbands in the same way, live with {your wives} in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”

      James 4:2-3 “……You do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend {it} on your pleasures.”

      James 1:5-7 “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord,”

      John 15:7 “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”

      I John 5:14-15 “This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us {in} whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him. “

    • AcesLucky

      Hi Cherylu,

      1 Peter 3:7 Peter is doing the talking, not Jesus
      James 4:2-3 Again, not Jesus
      James 1:5-7 Again, not Jesus

      “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. 8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”
      John 15:7-8 (KJV)

      This is Jesus talking! Good find – I missed that one! Notice it agrees EXACTLY with what he said in the other examples (thus corroborating his own statements). This is an agreement with his own words, not a refutation. Thank you!

      1 John 5:14-15 Sorry, again not Jesus


      Notice the examples you gave. The qualifiers were from someone OTHER THAN Jesus, but Jesus in each instance is consistent. Believe in him (ask in his name) and nothing will be withheld from you.

      You’ll understand if I don’t trump Jesus’ word with minor characters. And besides, if Jesus is God, his words cannot be limited or changed by the statements of others. They must stand as stated.

    • Lisa Robinson

      Aces, I think you are overlooking one very critical component – all Scripture is inspired by God, which means it is breathed out by him (2 Timothy 3:16). We can’t just take the words of Jesus as scripture and dismiss the rest.

    • cherylu


      After I made that last comment to you with all of those verses, I had a feeling you would answer precisely as you did.

      I almost made another comment to cover that, but didn’t. And guess what? My answer would of been exactly what Lisa said above.

      Except now that I have had a little more time to think about it, I would of added some more verses to my answer. And guess what, they are even right from Jesus mouth!

      Here they are: John 16:12-15 “I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear {them} now. But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose {it} to you. All things that the Father has are Mine; therefore I said that He takes of Mine and will disclose {it} to you”

      Where do we have a record of all that the Spirit revealed to the Apostles after Jesus returned to Heaven? I believe that is covered in the rest of the New Testament.

    • AcesLucky

      Hello cherylu,

      I don’t think you intend to make my case but you are. You are trying to give examples of how the word of Jesus (presumably God) can be modified by another person in scripture because (according to your theory) all of scripture must be taken into account.

      But if the “actual words” of God are not to be taken at face value due to words spoken by others in scripture, imagine how much *less so* must be the words spoken by others.

      You are simply saying that the words of Jesus “as spoken” are wrong! Thus, if we cannot take the word of Jesus at face value, by what reason do we take the contradicting word of another? [1]

      If we can’t take Jesus at his word (as True), then why are we taking ANY of the bible as true? And if any old bloke can change the word of God, then why do we need the God? [2]

      And so if the words of Jesus cannot be taken at face value, without modification, then you have substantiated my original position that biblical scripture is not to be taken as “actual” truth but perhaps metaphorical.

      [1] Note: None of the passages spoken by Jesus, not even the one you gave, contradict Jesus. They are all in agreement. It is the OTHER character that contradicts the word of Jesus by adding qualifiers. Jesus never added these qualifiers but instead contradicts them by reiterating absolutes (NOTHING will be held from you, ANY thing asked in my name, etc..).

      [2] It would be inconsistent that an all-knowing god would be found saying things that he didn’t mean. And since Jesus is sin free, he cannot lie. By who’s superseding authority, then, can Jesus’ words be modified to mean differently than what they actually say?

    • cherylu


      Did you read Lisa’s comment above–the one I said I agreed with 100% and was my answer to you too?

      We believe that ALL of the Bible is God’s God’s inspired Word, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”
      II Timothy 3:16-17

      Some translations use the term “God breathed” instead of inspired. In other words, the things these other men teach us in the Bible are God’s (Jesus) words to us too.

      If it is all God’s Word–some of it given directly by Jesus and some given to other men and written down for us, I can see no other way to look at it but that these men’s words are qualifiers on what Jesus said. In fact they are some of the further teachings He spoke about needing to give them.

    • AcesLucky

      “Did you read Lisa’s comment above – the one I said I agreed with 100% and was my answer to you too?

      We believe that ALL of the Bible is God’s God’s inspired Word,..”

      Right. That’s what I was responding to. And yes, I understand that you believe that these men’s words are qualifiers on what Jesus said.

      That’s why I wrote what I wrote. Your view reinforces my original statement. You are simply agreeing that the word of Jesus “as spoken” is not true!

    • Lisa Robinson

      Aces, your comment makes no sense. In what way does believing the passages where Jesus is not speaking directly contradict what he says? No one is saying Jesus’ words are not true, except for you.

    • AcesLucky

      Hi Lisa,

      Jesus says ABCD and it is the inerrant word of a god.
      Joe says ABCW, and that’s what Jesus really means.

      You are saying Jesus meant ABCW because Joe.
      I am saying Jesus meant ABCD because Jesus.

      If you are correct and Jesus really means ABCW then Jesus’ words “as spoken” are not inerrant because ABCW does not equal ABCD.

      And you are also suggesting that since Joe implies Jesus doesn’t know what he’s talking about, then Jesus doesn’t know what he’s talking about because Joe said it. Why, then, do we care what Jesus says if what matters is what Joe says? And since Jesus is God, and Joe is not, you have elevated Joe above God.

      Do you see how your reasoning fails the very theory you’re trying to follow? And if John contradicts Joe, then now follow John? Do we follow the furthest person from the source? (Bad idea!)

      In your system, the “book” is in charge (vis-à-vis 2nd Timothy) and not the God. The “book” however constantly contradicts itself. This makes truth RELATIVE if at all. But notice, in every passage where Jesus is doing the actual talking there is NO contradiction.

      Thus, if you are correct:

      Then, “truth” in the bible is RELATIVE (if at all) because it is not actual (standing on its own, like a fact) but subject to any modifier that comes along, like Joe or John in the book.

      If the word of Jesus, the word of God “as spoken”, cannot be taken as true (as fact that stands on its own), then how can ANY word from the bible be taken as true?

      PS: your theory is based entirely on the premise that 2nd Timothy is valid. Never mind the fact that it makes the bible circular and thus causes (as you have) the logical fallacy known as “circular reasoning” or “begging the question” [Ex: the bible cannot be false because the bible says it cannot be false.]; but 1st & 2nd Timothy (and Titus) are believed by many theological scholars to be forgeries attempting to “settle doctrinal disputes within the church.”

      I believe your faith will not permit you to accept such a conclusion so I won’t bother you with references. Just know that my commitment is not against the bible, Koran, God, Jesus, or whatever… My only commitment in this discussion is to truth.

    • cherylu


      I am curious, how do you explain the passage in II Corinthians 12:7-9 where Paul talks about asking God 3 times to remove an affliction from him and God told him, “No”?

      Maybe it would help your overall understanding of what Lisa and I are both tryng to say here if you look at this analogy. Please remember all analogies fail at some point, so keep that in mind with this one please? Anyway, how about thinking of the Bible, the New Testament in particular since that is what we are discussing, as a business contract. It is all written by one person as we are saying that the Bible is whether spoken by Jesus directly or given by Him to other men to be spoken to us.

      In a contract there is always a body of clauses telling us how things will be done and the criteria that both parties must hold to if the contract is signed. For the purpose of my analogy, these clauses are the direct words of Jesus that you are referring to above.

      However, if you read the contract on to the end, you are very likely to find qualifiers to those clauses, nuances that will change the meaning of the clauses given in certain circumstances. The “If this, then this”, type of thing. That doesn’t mean the first clauses of the contract were a lie does it? Nor does it mean that we can’t trust the first clauses of the contract. It only means that we need to read the WHOLE thing and understand the full body of the contract to fully understand how it is meant to work.

      Remember the Scripture from John in Jesus own words that I quoted above where He said He had much more to teach them then He had at that point? Remember that was said right before His death. I believe He simply had not at that point given them all of those nuances and “If” statements that a person will only know if he reads the contract all of the way to the end and doesn’t just read the first few clauses and then believe he understands the contract in it’s entirety.

      I hope that analogy might at least help you to understand a little be better what we are trying to say.

    • AcesLucky


      “I am curious, how do you explain the passage in II Corinthians 12:7-9 where Paul talks about asking God 3 times to remove an affliction from him and God told him, “No”?”

      Presuming its a true event and what Jesus said was also true, then the two events are contradictory. Either Jesus was wrong or the narrative is wrong. The third alternative is, of course, what you are saying, that what Jesus said is subject to revision by other narratives in the book.

      Though I have never appreciated this approach because it is contrived, I can see why others are forced to accept it. You are forced to accept this position because you must reconcile the book as true in spite of contradictions.

      I don’t accept it because in each instance Jesus could have just as easily stated what those other persons’ qualifiers were (as part of His), but he did the opposite. He made it emphatic what His qualifiers were on behalf of him and his father.

      The reason qualifiers are needed to be found ELSEWHERE is because it is overtly demonstrable that the words by Jesus “as spoken and as emphasized” clearly do not work as promised! So off we go looking for reasons WHY they don’t work, forcing one to eventually conclude things like: Joe says otherwise in another text in another conversation, or it’s a parable or its only meant for certain people, etc..

      Jesus doesn’t say “ask in my name and I will do it… unless you’ve been a bad boy and everybody by birth is a bad boy!” Find that phrase elsewhere in the bible, though, and Jesus is now off the hook, except now it makes what Jesus said moot.

      You see, they don’t “refine” what Jesus says, they CONTRADICT it. And I don’t believe you fully accept your rationalization of the “contract” analogy.

      Suppose Jesus came to you personally! Face to face, in real life, looks you directly in the eyes and says, “Cherylu do not go outside this Saturday or something terrible will happen that you will deeply regret.” Paul shows up on Friday and says “let’s go out tomorrow.” You say Jesus told you to stay inside on Saturday, but Paul says, “Oh, no, Jesus meant only between two and four o’clock.”

      Given that such a qualifier could have been said by Jesus, would you accept Paul’s word over what Jesus actually said? Cherylu, I don’t think so! And I don’t think that you think so either.

    • cherylu


      I have been thinking about your last comment to me.

      I don’t think those verses that I gave you contradict what Jesus said at all. He did put stipulations on anwered prayer. For instance they had to ask in faith believing. The passage I quoted in James 1 says these prayers weren’t answered because these people doubted.

      The passage in James 4 says these folks didn’t get what they asked for because they asked with wrong motives and the verse in I John says we need to ask according to God’s will to have our prayers answered. Remember, Jesus said if we abide in Him and His Words abide in us, we would ask and receive whatever we ask for. Is it truly abiding in Him and having His words abide in us to ask for things just so we can spend (or waste them) on our pleasures? Or if we ask for things that aren’t according to God’s will for us, are we really abiding in Him at that point? Jesus in other places teaches us over and over that He will provide us with what we need and give us good things–that is obviously his will for us–not necessarily giving us everything we want to make us happy so we can just use those things on ourselves. And those things are not always good things for us although we may think they are!

      Also, Jesus said He would give us whatever we asked in His name. Does asking in His name mean just tacking His name unto the end of our prayer? Or does it mean asking in accordance with that name and all it stands for? If that is the case, asking just according to our pleasures or for things that are against His will doesn’t fit with what He has said either.

      And the I Peter verse that talks about prayer being hindered if a husband does not live properly with His wife is not contradictory either. God has given instructions on how a man is to live with His wife. I am thinking particulaly of the verse in Ephesians 5 where God told husbands through Paul that they were to love their wives and give themselves for her as Christ loves the church and gave himself for it. Again, is a husband really abiding in Christ and His words abiding in him if he is failing to treat His wife properly? I don’t think so.

      And by the way, Jesus seems to imply very strongly in Matthew 6 that a person that is a hypocrite when they pray and pray to be seen by men, won’t receive any answers from Him either. So there is one more “qualifier” to answered prayer that comes directly from the mouth of Jesus himself!

    • AcesLucky

      “I don’t think those verses that I gave you contradict what Jesus said at all. He did put stipulations on anwered prayer. For instance they had to ask in faith believing. The passage I quoted in James 1 says these prayers weren’t answered because these people doubted.”

      I realized that instantly, but had to assume you knew that or wouldn’t have used that example. That is to say, I did not assume that Paul did not believe (since it would have made the conversation with god rather suspect from the start. You would not have used such an example, so I gave you the benefit of the doubt; which is why I prefaced my comment with “Presuming its a true event…”
      – – –

      “The passage in James 4 says these folks didn’t get what they asked for because they asked with wrong motives and the verse in I John says we need to ask according to God’s will to have our prayers answered.”

      I think you know that if it already has to be according to God’s will, (a cop-out, since no one can know what his will is), then what’s the point in prayer? Since god already knows what we want and will or will-not grant it according to what HE wants, no prayer can change anything.

      Further, its not what Jesus said. Motives be damned. Jesus said “believe on him and have faith” and your prayers will be answered BY him and his father. Gee, if the sun can be stopped in mid-flight so that Joshua(?) could continue to kill, I think motive is rather moot. Besides, in real life, we clearly see that that’s not the case at all is it? Purity of heart, faith, and motive mean nothing in getting real-life prayers answered, does it? [If you need proof, I’ll supply plenty.]
      – – –

      “Is it truly abiding in Him and having His words abide in us to ask for things just so we can spend (or waste them) on our pleasures?”

      Thankfully we can utilize this truth to cure cancer by the end of the week. Our motives would be unselfish, and it would glorify God the world over. Right? So why is it that we already know (in advance) that it won’t do anything? But Jesus can kill a fig tree because it’s god’s will? Turn water into wine because it’s god’s will? Walk on water because its god’s will? How do these glorify god or abide in His word?

      You are not offering demonstrations, you’re offering excuses. If what you say works, why don’t you (or anyone) demonstrate a pure unselfish heart and go heal an amputee, or the many children in the cancer ward? Why don’t we see this from any church, (except the ones that have cemeteries in their back yard of failed faith feelings).

      None of it works in real life regardless of the stipulations! But I will be more than happy for you to give a demonstration (not on a stage) in the cancer ward, where it matters.
      – –

      I’m sorry I’m late, I have to run…

    • cherylu


      It is obvious that this conversation is going to go nowhere. So I am going to bow out. So long as you are going to absolutely insist that only what Jesus says Himself counts and not the rest of the Bible too, nothing I could say in reply to any of your statments above would do the least bit of good.

    • AcesLucky


      You wrote:

      “It is obvious that this conversation is going to go nowhere. So I am going to bow out. So long as you are going to absolutely insist that only what Jesus says Himself counts and not the rest of the Bible too, nothing I could say in reply to any of your statments above would do the least bit of good.”
      – – –

      I apologize. My point was completely missed in the fray of establishing Jesus as the authority in biblical scripture. My point is a bit more sublime.

      Let us suppose you are completely correct; that the rest of the bible counts equally as with the word of Jesus.

      Now then, let us do some good. I know that we have to believe, have faith, be sincere, (and name any stipulation you can find to add as a requirement for prayer to work), and ask in the name of Jesus to glorify god; completely unselfish.

      Question: If we find the most pure believers available, meeting ALL the criteria you specify from scripture, will they be able to ask that cancer be cured in every child within one week? Tonight?

      Why is it that we KNOW it won’t happen, in spite of all the clauses that are met?

      Remember, I am conceding that you and your position are right. (So don’t use me, as I have my doubts. But YOU, surely knows of someone who can qualify to pray.)

      Will we get any action from God to meet this request in spite of every condition being met? The next time you go to church, ask your Pastor to hold prayer with the most pure of heart in the congregation, to ask that all cancer in non adults be gone by the end of the week. Do everything right.

      Cherylu? Will you ask your God to show just a tiny bit of mercy towards these children? He can do that, right? And can’t you? Please do.

      Let’s see if God’s Word works in real life.

      The answer you receive… is what I’ve been trying to tell you.

    • cherylu


      I think I am jumping back in here against my better judgement! But what makes you so absolutely certain that it is God’s will to immediately cure all cancer in this world, or even the cancer in children? Remember, that is one of the stipulations in the verses given for answered prayer.

      All sin and sickness and disease entered this earth after man sinned in the Garden of Eden and the death sentence was pronounced upon them. And God hasn’t promised to remove all of that until heaven. And yes, children are affected too. In fact, for Him to remove it now would be to remove at least part of the consequences of sin, would it not? And that is not all going to happen until Jesus comes again and we have the new heaven and the new earth.

      And with that, I really am going to bow out of this discussion!

    • AcesLucky


      You wrote:

      “…what makes you so absolutely certain that it is God’s will to immediately cure all cancer in this world, or even the cancer in children? Remember, that is one of the stipulations in the verses given for answered prayer.”
      – – –

      For two reasons:

      1. Because to answer such a prayer would demonstrate the love He claims for mankind:

      /”For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son [Jesus], that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16/

      It would glorify God, show His mercy and love, help the innocent in their suffering, and because any being (such as you or I) who is in a position to do so WOULD do so as a matter of moral character. It is consistent with Matt 7:12 and Luke 6:31

      /”Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again. 31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.”
      Luke 6:30-31 (KJV)/

      And that again is Jesus talking (sound familiar?), or shall I say God? As you can see, it is PERFECTLY consistent with everything He says is good. [That’s how I know.] But if all that is wrong and does NOT represent His will, then what the heck did he give His only begotten Son FOR? Did He NOT so love the world…? And once again what Jesus says makes no sense.

      2. Prayer makes no sense for God to say, “I will answer your prayers if you have faith and believe in me, but only if I was going to do it anyway!”
      – – –

      People will pray to God to win a football game, but to cure cancerous children is not consistent with his will? (What kind of God is this?) According to item 1 above, it should be perfectly consistent with His will, if the bible is his word.

      So then why do we both know that it won’t work?

      It’s been a pleasure talking with you Cherylu.

      Peace and prosperity to you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.