Robert Bird, a professor in the English department, spoke Tuesday to those attending devotional regarding truth.
Bird told the story of Jesus Christ and his time on Earth. He spoke of Christ meeting with Pilate and focused on Pilate’s question, “What is truth?”
“The answer to Pilate’s question is long,” Bird said.
He continued his talk by explaining the importance of truth and how to find it.
Throughout his talk, he mentioned several poems regarding truth. One poem he shared was, “Oh Say What Is Truth” by John Jaques, now a hymn that the congregation sang at the beginning of devotional, which reads:
“Oh say, what is truth? ‘Tis the fairest gem. That the riches of worlds can produce, and priceless the value of truth will be when the proud monarch’s costliest diadem is counted but dross and refuse.”
After sharing this poem, Bird spoke to the importance truth holds.
“Truth works, lies frustrate; truth endures, lies falter; truth promotes reconciliation and healing, lies promote betrayal,” Bird said. “In the end, the truth wins.”
Bird said how telling the truth liberates, but must be done gradually. Otherwise, it may cause damage.
He helped students understand why searching for the truth on our own is important. He gave an example of Socrates trying to convince others to look through a telescope to see the truth, but none would believe him. They only wanted to believe what they knew and would not accept the real truth.
“We need to be careful that our search for truth does not reflect back to us what we want to be true,” Bird said. “It is important to be on the side of truth; to search, to find, and to share. It is worth it.”
Bird invited students to recognize the importance of truth and search it out as they pursue their academic careers here at BYU-Idaho.
Listen to the devotional given by Bird on the BYU-I website. Next week’s devotional features Elder Devin R. Duncan, a member of the Seventy, and his wife, Nancy Duncan.