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To tell the Truth

This article was published in the Presbyterian Standard, Issue No. 25, January-March 2002.

NO man is blessed apart from it. No nation will prosper by rejecting it. Certainly no church can do without it. And importantly, Jesus Christ came into the world to bear witness to it. What are we referring to? We are speaking of the truth.

Our nation was once noted for its love of the truth. But where is the truth to be found among us today? It is the loss of the truth which is the most disturbing evidence of our spiritual declension and the judgment of God now upon us. There is surely a widespread famine, "not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord" (Amos 8:11). A strange famine, for though "the words of the Lord" are still to be had the people have no hunger for them! If this famine does not end soon then we may fear greatly for our nation's future.

In recent centuries the devil has mounted a strong attack on the very idea that there is such a thing as pure, uncontestable, heaven-sent truth. This onslaught is now intense. We should not be surprised at this, for of Satan it is said, "there is no truth in him" (John 8:44). But what is grievous is that he has so many willing followers in every field of human learning and endeavour.

Men have not totally abandoned the idea of truth. But now each person decides for himself what is true, and what is true for one may not be true for another. In religion it seems that one may follow any god one chooses and worship in any way one desires. We have lost the concept of absolute truth: that there are certain things which are always and forever true, whether men believe them or not.

For salvation we need to know and rest upon realities, not mere theories. The wonder is that the truth has been made known. The Bible claims to be the Word of God and to have the definitive answers to all life's great questions. Though it is fashionable to scorn the Scriptures and their message we see the confusion which results when they are cast aside. Our attitude must be, "Let God be true, but every man a liar" (Rom.3:4).

Jesus said that He was 'the truth' and the only way to God (John 14:6). It is very sad when some who say they are His followers are hesitant about the truth. Ministers cast doubt upon the Bible. Attacks are made on the divinity of Christ, His atoning death and physical resurrection. The hell Jesus taught is plainly denied. Never heed such bad witnesses. They have their reward. Pray for a meek and teachable spirit to receive all that God has spoken.

The task of Christ's church is to proclaim the truth to a sinful, perishing world that needs it but does not really want it. We must trust in the Lord Himself to create the sense of need in men's hearts. Have you "bought the truth" by a personal faith in Jesus Christ (Prov.23:23)? Can you say with Paul, "I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ" (Rom.1:16)? May we be obedient to the truth all our days.