This is my truth…tell me yours, was the 1998 album title of the Welsh pop-rock group The Manic Street Preachers…and no, that’s not where I learned to preach!

I’ve always loved this title, probably more so than the album itself.  The group supposedly borrowed the title from The British Labour Party politician, Aneurin Bevan who is regarded as a champion of social justice and human rights…and no, I’m not that well informed on British politics, I just looked it up on Wikipedia. J

Pilate asks the question most of us try to avoid in our lives to some degree – What is truth?  Check out John 18:33-38 to read the text we’ll be wrestling with on Sunday morning, which is traditionally called “Christ the King” or “Reign of Christ” Sunday, the last Sunday before Advent begins.

Lorna and I recently watched Denzel Washington’s new flick, “Flight”. It’s a movie that offers profound theological reflection on the truth of God’s place in our lives and world amidst the reality of innocent and personal suffering.

I will keep the spoilers to a minimum, but if you haven’t seen the movie yet and that type of thing get’s your goat…stop now or forever hold your peace.

Denzel Washington plays Capt. Whip, a pilot who flies a commercial plane that undergoes mechanical failure.  He manages to land the plane, literally having to fly it upside down, and in the aftermath of the crash saves almost everyone’s life on board.

While mechanical failure is eventually blamed for the crash, the other truth is that Capt. Whip flew intoxicated and high on cocaine, and he has a devastating drinking addiction stemming from the events of his past.

Now you get the point on which the film turns – Is the truth of the crash that the plane suffered mechanical failure, OR that the pilot’s life is steeped in an addiction whose violent repercussions are just as severe as that plane crash.  It depends.  Like Pilate’s question (no pun intended) – What is truth?

Lawyers for Whip’s union want to declare this an “Act of God”.  Apparently, God is responsible for the accidental deaths, not the actions of human beings to which Whip responds, “What kind of God would do this?”  His co-pilot, who knew he wasn’t fit to fly that day, comes at it from a different angle.  He believes Whip was blessed by God to land the plane at all.  So which is it?  It all depends.  What is truth?

In my view, neither of these explanations says much about God but more about us and our need to hold someone, something, anything accountable for what happens in our lives.

The truth of God gets seen and heard when Whip is asked to testify before a public safety hearing about the cause of the crash.  His testimony will affect whether criminal proceedings take place.  If the truth of his addictions see the light of day, it doesn’t matter about mechanical failure.  In Georgia, he’s going to prison…for life.

As he has his whole life, Whip has spent the whole movie lying about his drinking while trying to evade his personal responsibility in favour of blaming the plane or anyone else for what happened.

When the board’s lawyer finally puts him on the spot about his drinking – Whip faces a point of no return: either he tells one more lie and gets away scot free, or he tells the truth and suffers the consequences.

Looking at an image of one of his fellow crew members who died in the crash, Whip can’t bear it anymore, and completely confesses his personal culpability in front of national TV.

His lawyers are furious. It is one of the most pivotal and moving scenes I have seen in film.  It’s also a profound theological reflection that casts light on Pilate’s conversation with Jesus – the last conversation Jesus will have in John’s gospel before the