If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. (John 8:31-32)
Let us begin. Where do we begin? The scope of my writings is to question, evaluate, and ultimately identify what truth is, and then how to build our lives upon truth. I believe it is safe to say that most of us share this desire or ponder this “question of the soul” or similar questions from time to time. What do you ultimately hope for, and live for? What is this life for? What happens to us after death? This specific article is simply an attempt to provide a starting point for us in this process.
My beliefs, hopes, and ultimately my behavior are all dependent upon the answer to the question of the existence of God and Jesus Christ, for these reasons: 1- The reality of God and Jesus Christ would determine where to find a trustworthy source of truth to live by, 2- The reality of God and Jesus Christ would prove that mortality is just a phase; that God’s existence or realm is outside of, or more than mortality, and 3- Christ is the only person in recorded history to have had power over death. If that is indeed true, we would, in the very least, know that death is not the end of our existence, but rather through His infinite Atonement we too can have life restored unto us again.
So it is in finding the truth behind this base question that we can determine our faith, beliefs, priorities, and behaviors. This is where we begin.
A common misconception that is prominent in societies today is the perceived conflict or contradiction between science and religion. Indeed the two work in different realms, the former in the physical and the latter in the spiritual, but both science and religion have their single goal in common: to find and understand truth; things as they really are.
Based upon the precepts of mankind, scientific truths come by physical or measurable evidence through controlled experimentation—the scientific method. What starts out as a hypothesis can turn into a theory, which in turn can become a “Law of Nature” if proven enough times through. Much of what societies are and what they teach are based on these natural laws and theories, because as human beings we live in a physical dimension. There is tangible evidence to support those philosophies. But we know, and are compelled to admit that we do not know everything, nor are we always right about our physical world. In fact, I don’t think we can even say how much or how little we know about our physical existence simply because we don’t know how much there is to know.
Spiritual truths can be found in a very similar manner as scientific truths. The process starts with a question, which is followed by research of scripture and pondering, and then acting in accordance to principles or doctrine. However, finding spiritual truths requires a desire to believe, and to follow after righteousness. A testimony of all truth, both temporal and spiritual, is made manifest to us in our minds and in our hearts by way of the Holy Ghost through inexplicable thoughts and/or feelings, and the promised blessings that we receive through obedience to these truths are the evidence that they are indeed true.
Some would argue that, from a scientific perspective, there is no God, because there is no convincing physical evidence to prove such. However, based on the fact that we do not know everything, even about our physical world, nullifies such an absolute statement that there is no God.
The Apostle Paul teaches us that the wisdom of God appears as foolishness to men, and that spiritual things can only be discerned by the Spirit of God, that manifests to us the truth of all things, and opens our mind’s eye to the mysteries of God (1 Corinthians 2:10-14). Perhaps the most efficient way we can disprove the existence of God is to actually seek Him out to see if He does exist or not. We can find evidence of His existence through spiritual experiences that perhaps cannot be explained through what we currently know scientifically. Again, spiritual experiences come by way of acting in accordance to commandments, doctrine, and principles found in scripture.
If you think about it long enough and as you experience it enough, you will begin to see that both spiritual and scientific truths are connected (in that order; first spiritual, and then scientific), and that all truth is combined into one great whole. This is because all truth emanates from the One True God, who created all things. As it is written, “But remember that all my judgments are not given unto men; and as the words have gone forth out of my mouth even so shall they be fulfilled, that the first shall be last, and that the last shall be first in all things whatsoever I have created by the word of my power, which is the power of my Spirit. For by the power of my Spirit created I them; yea, all things both spiritual and temporal– First spiritual, secondly temporal, which is the beginning of my work; and again, first temporal, and secondly spiritual, which is the last of my work—Speaking unto you that you may naturally understand; but unto myself my works have no end, neither beginning; but it is given unto you that ye may understand, because ye have asked it of me and are agreed. Wherefore, verily I say unto you that all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal; neither any man, nor the children of men; neither Adam, your father, whom I created (D&C 29:30-34).” So, God being the Creator of all things known to our existence, whom we worship spiritually, is also the Master of true science, and all these laws and principles to Him are of spiritual nature; all circumscribed into one great whole.
Now, circling back to where we began this article. I reiterate the idea that to start on the path of truth one must first find out for himself/herself if God and Christ do or do not exist. This is because man’s knowledge is incomplete and imperfect, yet the knowledge of God and the life of Jesus are claimed to be perfect. Finding the truth behind Their existence would lead us to know where to search for all the truth that exists. I challenge you to find out for yourself if they are not real, with a promise that if you ask in prayer with an open heart and mind, and with a true desire to know and to follow, you just might be surprised with what answer you receive.