Sunday, March 10, 2013

Truth

"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. And third, it is accepted as being self-evident." 
-Author Schopenhauer 

I'm concerned how those who stand up for the truth get bashed and torn to shreds by others who are threatened by that very truth itself. At the least, others stiff-arm them for their stand. But it can get pretty ugly sometimes too.

I'm more concerned that this is also going on in the Body of Christ.

If I've learned one thing about the truth it's that it often offends people. It has always been this way. Even in Jesus day.

What concerns me most is how others react to or treat those who are speaking truth. It's one thing to reject it. It's quite another to mount a malicious assault against that person or group of people because one felt offended or didn't like the truth being spoken.

Sometimes the truth is difficult to hear. Sometimes it's bittersweet. Nevertheless, that doesn't change any part of the truth itself.

When it comes to the truths of God and His Word, we don't get to pick and choose what we find applicable and what we do not. God's truth is just that - His truth. We align with it and not the other way around. I pray the Lord helps us all to walk carefully and humbly in this.

Ecclesiastes says there is a time for all things, including a time to speak and a time to be silent. I think we've entered into a time of standing up and speaking the truth in love. That is the key - to speak it in love.

Here's the thing about truth: it is what it is.

The truth has no agenda but to reveal the actual state of a matter; reality. You can deny it. You can stuff it in a closet, lock it up, and throw away the key. You can pronounce it dead and bury it. You can even give it a tombstone - Here lies the Truth. But eventually, the truth WILL come out. The truth cannot be buried, hidden away, or suppressed forever. Mark 4:22 confirms this, "For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open." 

We of all people, as disciples of Jesus, should desire to walk in truth. Not half-truths or self-serving truths (not just the parts of the truth that only make us feel better, look good or serve our desires). But all truth.

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of truth who leads us into the knowledge of all truth (John 16:13). He wants to show us truth. And we need it. We need Him too. Perhaps more than we know.

However, I now believe the question has become, do we even want to hear and know the truth anymore? Because once we come into the knowledge of truth; we then become responsible for that knowledge. That scares some people. And some people just plain don't like it. But we cannot live rightly without truth governing our lives.

Satan, our enemy, opposes and despises the truth and those who stand for it. He will work through others who have that in common with him. But Paul said our battle is not with flesh and blood but with principalities, powers, rulers of darkness of this age and spiritual wickedness in high or heavenly places (Ephesians 6).

We must first desire the truth in our own lives, as Jesus is the truth (John 14:6). The more time we spend with "the truth," that is Jesus, the more truth we will desire to walk in. And He is faithful to help us do that but we must get our hearts rightly aligned with Him and His order.

We must learn to stand in the strength of the Lord and the power of His might. We must seek His wise counsel. We need to put on and keep on the whole Armor of God, which includes the belt of truth (Ephesians 6:14). And we need to learn how to war the enemy through prayer, intercession, and the declaring of God's Word (our sword).

In the days to come, I seriously believe we're going to start seeing those who will adamantly take a stand for truth and those who will adamantly oppose it. We will see those who will surprise us all by standing up and speaking up for truth. Even those we'd least likely expect to do so. Conversely, we'll be just as surprised by those who won't. I think we've already begun to see this unfold but I believe we'll see it even more in government, business, education, medicine, and yes, within the Church.

We need to know and have understanding of the truths of God's Word. We must read and meditate on the Scriptures and let it soak in our hearts, minds and spirits. In other words, we got to study the Bible! And not causally but with intention and by the leading of the Spirit. This, balanced with godly discernment, will be what keeps many from end time deception, which is what Jesus warned of in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21.

Only God Himself can reveal some truths but as His people; we should desire to have and walk in His perspective of truth. He operates in it. He delights in it. He abides in it. And so should we.

"Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth." 1 Corinthians 13:6

"The Lord detests lying lips but He delights in those who tell the truth." Proverbs 12:22

"These are the things you are to do: speak the truth to each other, and render true and sound judgement in your courts; do not plot evil against each other, and do not swear falsely. I hate all this, declares the Lord." Zechariah 8:16-17

"The sum of Your word is truth; and every one of Your righteous decrees endures forever." Psalm 119:160

"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things." Philippians 4:8

~ Michelle

Copyright © 2013 Michelle Holderman