One of the greatest failures, I think, of the Church and Christians over the centuries has been an inability to accept when we are wrong. We mix up the fact that we attempt, in our rather bumbling way, to point towards the ultimate truth, with the idea that we have the ultimate truth. Of course, when we talk about truth we use the language of ‘having.’ But ‘having’ the truth implies that we have a strong handle on it, that it’s an easily domesticated thing. Truth, like Aslan, is not tame.
And so, in being so connected to what we believe is the truth, I think we forget that we are not always right. We feel the need to be right: in arguments; in doctrine; in church style; in myriad other ways. But being right is not as important as doing right.
I take my lead from an American Fundamentalist Bible College, Bob Jones University. Or rather, a rather small segment of students from said university, who were protesting the fact that a member of the board of governors was, when a pastor of a church, allegedly part of the covering up of a forcible rape of a minor, while ‘disciplining’ the girl involved. You can read the full story about Tina Anderson here, and the news of the protest here.
While this is obviously an horrific example, the point I am trying to make is that being right and doing right are two completely different things. If we are so concerned with being right, we miss out vital opportunities to do right. And I am slowly coming to the realisation that I would rather be wrong about something, if I was doing right to the last, the lost and the least.