WOODBRIDGE, Va. What is the truth? Many, both Christians and non-Christians, hesitate to give a clear response to the question that religious experts call the most important question Christians in today's culture must answer.
Some 700 believers sat in the pews of First Baptist Church Friday night to learn of the "great battle" they are waging in at Focus on the Family's The Truth Project training session. The cosmos battle: Truth vs. Lies; Christian worldview vs. Postmodern worldview; God is vs. God isn't.
"It's a mad, mad world," said well-known Christian leader Chuck Colson in his latest column, and Christians need to help their neighbors understand the "dangers facing Western civilization."
Dr. Del Tackett, president of the Focus on the Family Institute, waved his hands at the Christian audience driving into them the notion that they are in a huge battle and Christians themselves have bought into the lies that the majority of Americans have conformed to. And the root of the problem comes down to the one question that Pontius Pilate asked Jesus more than 2,000 years ago "What is truth?"
"It's not a new battle," Tackett told the engaged believers as he clarified his position as a teacher and not a speaker.
"We live in a culture that is bowing down to all kinds of things and saying 'save me,'" he said in reference to Isaiah 44 where a man bows down to a god he made from half a tree.
It's not any different for Christians. Tackett alarmed some of the attendants when he brought attention to a Barna study that found only nine percent of the "born again" population have a biblical worldview. Among the general population, the figure was four percent.
"How can Christians expect to pass along their values to the next generation if they don't even know what they believe [and] if those beliefs are ... changing all the time," said Dr. James Dobson, head of Focus on the Family, in a promotional recording for The Truth Project.
Tackett, who taught Christian worldview for many years, quoted Colson saying: "The Church's singular failure in recent decades has been the failure to see Christianity as a life system, or worldview, that governs every area of existence."
The quote continued: "[W]e cannot answer the questions our children bring home from school, so we are incapable of preparing them to meet the challenges they face. . . . We cannot explain to our friends and neighbors why we believe, and we often cannot defend our faith. And we do not know how to organize our lives correctly."
On the whole, churches and seminaries have failed to equip believers with the truth or how to defend the truth.
"Unfortunately, we have a lot of seminaries that have failed to give their ... students that full comprehensive biblical worldview," Tackett told The Christian Post. "In many cases, there are many churches that are very strong. But on the whole, we don't have that. People in the congregation aren't getting it from there. And we have a whole world that is pulling them away, bombarding them with all those lies and they're not armed with the truth to be able to discern that."
Putting his teaching into context, Tackett gave an example of a young girl lying on a hospital bed weighing 65 pounds. Every time she looks in a mirror she sees fat.
"You and I act on what we believe is really real," he said.
Jesus was born to "testify to the Truth," said Tackett, and the Truth is God. "He is the Truth." The world today says "Truth is reality."
"How does mankind react to Truth?" posed Tackett. We suppress, distort, and reject the Truth and exchange it for a lie, he said.
The only long-term solution is "to rebuild those foundations, that comprehensive biblical worldview within God's people," he said. And one of the effects is not being easily fooled.
Two years in the making, The Truth Project was born to address the "pervasive problem," as Dobson noted, and to introduce believers to the Truth claims of Christ. It is considered the ministry's most ambitious project.
The Truth Project two-day training sessions began in May and this is the ministry's sixth session. Each attendant is given a DVD curriculum and encouraged to open up their homes to go through the complete study with others from where the ministry prays for the project's spread to many other homes.
"We're interested in transformation," Tackett stressed.
The Truth Project will hit several more locations throughout the states up through spring 2007.