Certainty or truth. Choose one. You cannot have both.
These might seem like rather provocative statements but their purpose is to show the significant distinction between certainty and truth.

There are many things we may be certain of. We may be certain of the facts of a situation. We may have moral and ethical principles were are absolutely persuaded of. Yet truth is so much more than facts or the principles we are comfortable to live by.

The infinite beauty and complexity of relationship, the unfolding meaning of existence, the pure givenness of life … this is where truth is glimpsed at. We experience the beauty of truth, not in fully grasping or possessing it, but by participating in it. It grasps us, seduces us, disrupts our indifference and draws us to what is worth pursuing.

And so the experience of truth is more like falling in love, than the sober calculation of coming to an absolute persuasion. The truth of Christ Jesus should astonish us, bewilder us, de-centre us, even confuse us out of our stable stagnant certainties.

The experience of certainty cannot be described in the same way. There is a measure of control, of definite boundaries and stability in certainty. And so the juxtaposition of certainty over against truth becomes clear. The truth of beauty defies our borders and categories, it never submits to our control or our understanding… but rather gives itself freely.

Lets make this more practical:

The deepest encounters I’ve had with God/truth, occurred at the point of my deepest doubt… which is also the point of my deepest faith. It is here where my concepts of God were undone (divine doubt) and a reality larger than my certainties unveiled itself, that I found myself enveloped and overwhelmed with a truth that does not fit into my mind… but a truth that continuously expands my mind by drawing me into its own infinity. This is not an experience of finding myself, but rather one of losing myself.

The lightning moment that stirred faith in the heart of Paul, was the exact same moment in which he doubted that the god of violence in whose name he persecuted the church, is truly God. The depth of faith is directly related to the depth of doubt.

To assume that this moment of encounter is a once-off, isolated event… after which we continue in our self-assured rightness, is to miss the best part of this romance. Oh to fall in love again and again with the beauty of truth. To allow myself to be astonished… lost in adoration. I will give up my certainties over and over again to stumble so.

(We are currently working on a guided meditation to assist others in this experience)

Truth vs true statements.

Mary-Anne and I just spent two days on an isolated small island on a lake in Canada. One of the evenings had a sunset that lit the sky on fire. It was breathtaking. I can say with confidence that it was beautiful. And if you saw it, I expect you would agree that my statement is true. Yet no matter how beautiful this sunset was, it did not capture all that beauty is. And although this statement might be true, it is far less that the truth of beauty… or the beauty of truth.

Incarnation

No greater testament to the living and dynamic nature of truth can be found than in the event of incarnation. Language was not an adequate medium. God communicates Himself in becoming flesh… not text, not self-assured statements, but the frailty and humility of entering into existence with all its complexities.

Never allow yourself to be robbed from the wonder of this astonishing truth. Never trade this ongoing living encounter for stale and stagnant statements.
The adventure of life should leave you bewildered and astonished.

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21 Responses to “Certainty or Truth. Choose one.”

  1. Patricia Pollock on

    I can see how doubt and faith are one and the same in the sense that they work together. How do hope and trust fit into this? Are hope and trust the same as faith? For there to be hope there must also be some doubt otherwise why hope? One cannot hope AND be certain at the same time.
    Andre I love the way you stir things up and infuse life into our minds.
    I look forward to those guided meditations.

    Reply
  2. Janine Lucas on

    Thank you Andre, for your amazing insights and the ability you have to share them with us/others, that brings hope which leads us into trust. its like your words and insights remind me of what l’ve always known but forgotten, thank you. Looking forward to the guided meditations as well.

    Reply
  3. Nollie McCain on

    I’m certain of this truth so simple and clear, that God is love & this love is the source of every created thing, and we get to explore it and enjoy its beauty in things like a beautiful sunset, or a pretty pink rose. The Earth is our playground, this is wonderful to see💛

    Reply
  4. Janice Chavis on

    Just wanted to say…your ministry of revelation is fulfilling. I’ve been blessed so much in the past month or so by your ministry and another that is similar in teaching. I’m tired of dead religion. I want life. Life that is tangible and is capable of being touched and expressed. Not of dead works. I’m gonna be 57 in August. And I must confess. I want the truth. Jesus came to me in a dream at the age of 10. It’s still in my heart. I confess He speaks to me in dreams. But I’m so hungry for more when I’m awake. I need more of Him. Pray for me Brother Rabe that the desires of my heart will be made manifest. That I experience the oneness that the Bible says I have. The manifest presence of my God. Blessings to you and yours! 🙏

    Reply
  5. Christine Stahl on

    So lovely. Very excited about the guided meditations. Just when I think we’ve travelled “too far out” of the box, your words reassure me and tell me we’re on the right track. Looking forward to having you here.

    Reply
  6. Don Merideth on

    Andre, thank you for the clarity of these words. I find in myself that trying to express in words the unveiling of the Father by Jesus to my heart very difficult. I can’t express it just experience it. I thank Him for giving you the ability to express. Beautiful!

    Reply
  7. Nabil Kamel Aquino on

    Hi Mary-Anne & Andre, thank you for opening wonderful new possibilities in regards of my preconceived ideas about God and also about myself, I feel my mind breaking loose of the jail of my own understanding of Scriptures and entering in this sweet and yet overwhelming truth that was hidden in me all along that now has found me and is revealed in me. I now have a good news that’s really good to share with everyone and most important that I’m not ashamed of, thank you, last weekend in Mississauga was awesome!

    Reply
  8. John Leggat on

    Thank you Andre and Mary-Anne-As always so enjoy your insightful thoughts and ideas and the way you in turn challenge our thinking!
    With that in mind and absolute certainty, I choose Truth.
    Love and miss you guys.

    Reply
  9. derek nichols on

    i always love the beauty in which you speak. though words may not describe all that you can mean, i do u understand to a point. i only wonder what the relevance is and why the question in the first place. it is wonderful to hear and read these words, but i have, since the moment i was blessed with this gospel always wondered why i cannot fully be who i imagine to be. never living up to the picture and perfectness of christ. always trying and then saying, yep i failed here, thank god for jesus. a revolving door that i cannot get off. thank god for my eternity and his relentless grace. how in this uncertainty do i feel the constant truth unfold if it is a constant. it seems easier to me to be certain and to not care about any of my mistakes. it seems like i can only handle the truth if i forget about it all and only understand 1 thing. that it was finished 2000 years ago and my worries are no more. i know for sure i have no more concerns. in the unfolding of truth there is less peace for me. it brings doubt. i love my life and love god in me and i love the certainty i have in knowing i need not be concerned. i love the most simple gospel. i love easy. so my rambling may not stop, so i will stop here. love you guys….

    Reply
  10. Frank Shaia on

    This reminds me a lot of guy who one time explained revelation to us…He said revelation is not just a revealing of something you don’t know, (basically, you can simply be taught things you know you don’t know). BUT, true revelation is when you are revealed things you don’t know that you don’t know… Then you whole paradigm has to change based on new truth.

    Reply
  11. Frank Shaia on

    one more comment. It seems to me that is why there is so much resistance to the real gospel. People don’t mean to resist, but they think you are talking about something they already know
    and so they just try to squeeze it into their already well constructed box of religion ( I don’t mean that negatively, it just is what it is). For them to get the new truth, they have to think outside their box… and that is scary! Perhaps the main reason it is scary, from a very positive view point is that people are afraid a falling into false doctrine… On the negative side, they just don’t trust God enough for Him to lead them into all truth.

    Reply
    • Andre Rabe on

      So true Frank. And that is exactly why I hope we can draw people, using the methaphor of falling in love, to an experience beyond the familiar mental capcity. To consent to the beauty of God is to allow our certainties to be dissolved. Even the things we can be certain of, such as the love of God. To experience more of this surprising love, we have to let go of what we know for certain… come to it afresh, anew and open to be surprised. Look forward to being with you soon!

      Reply
  12. Ethan on

    Love you guys so much. Can’t wait to see y’all in Virginia. Reading this gave me so much peace. I’m very back and forth mentally on this journey and this just speaks a lot to me. Can’t wait to see you Andre

    Reply
  13. Kai on

    Truth or Certainty?
    This is my take on it:
    One is a locked box unwilling to be opened and exposed to change.
    The other is the continual unraveling of an absolute that never changes. Only our perceptions and revelations of it change.
    Certainty (“Well, I certainly was right!” or “The world is most certainly flat!”) is unable to consider new revelations of truth unless that certainty is shattered by a truth.
    Truth (an absolute), to us appears to change as it’s mysteries unravel for us. Yet, it actually does not change. It is truth.
    It’s certainly good to be open to have our ‘certainty’ changed when more truth is revealed.
    When I was a child I was certain of many things, but many certainties changed as I got older and saw things more as they were.
    Certainty changes, but the truth is the truth and it never can change.

    Reply

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