The things that people agree on are not necessarily a condition of truth. The identity of personalities is commonly assumed to be true, according to the agreement of humanity. Disclosing one’s origin, settles the question of identity, according to geographically understood locations. It becomes easier for people to make estimations of what to expect from the person concerned.
Let us discuss the doctrine of the stable datum. What is true to an individual, gives stability, as granting security to an individual. Before the whites came, Africans believed in ancestral spirits, which made them feel secure, regardless of whether there was truth or not. Even a crafted idol stabilizes an individual.
In Zimbabwe, some people still believe that without the spirit of Mbuya Nehanda, it could not have been possible to attain independence. One can be killed, just for opposing that viewpoint, which would be considered sacred. Of course, there is no truth in that consideration, but it should be understood as true for those who believe in it. Those people hold no scientific evidence, but they consider the spirit of Mbuya Nehanda true, nevertheless.
“A silversmith named Demetrius, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought in no little business for craftsmen. He called them together, along with the workmen in related trades, and said: ‘Men, you know we receive a good income from this business. And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. He says that man-made gods are no gods at all.
“There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited, and the goddess herself, who is worshipped throughout the province of Asia and the world, will be robbed of her divine majesty.’ When they hear this, they were furious and began shouting: ‘Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!’” (Acts 19:24-28 NIV).
Demetrius may have not been a believer in the goddess Artemis, but was a shrewd businessman, manipulating the common belief in that province. The belief in the goddess Artemis was a stable datum to the people of Ephesus. Had God not intervened, Paul could have been mercilessly killed, for invalidating the goddess Artemis. God used the city clerk, whose interpretation of the law exonerated Paul from directly invalidating the goddess Artemis.
The doctrine of the stable datum impedes the preaching of the gospel. Interestingly, even those claiming to love Jesus, get clouded by the doctrine of the stable datum. It takes only a free person to come out of that confusion. The doctrine of the stable datum affects every human, except those having become God’s children. Divulging the truth can be a futile exercise.
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock, I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you lose on earth will be loosed in heaven” Then he warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ (Matthew 16:13-20 NIV).
Why did Jesus warn his disciples not to tell anyone that He was Christ? Jesus was aware of the doctrine of the stable datum. Bear in mind, the Jews eventually killed Him for specifically claiming that He was the Son of God (Luke 22:70-71). Therefore, aware of the doctrine of the stable datum, Jesus did not want the truth divulged, at that time.