To Tell The Truth...
Truth is an elusive quality today. Everybody talks about the truth. Everybody claims to want the truth and to place a high value upon the truth. The truth is, though, we are great abusers of truth. We really want truth to conform to our desires as to what we want the truth to be, and we have become quite skillful at reshaping and redefining truth in order that it will conform. With many people truth is no longer a set of observable, rational, objective facts. Rather, it has become “the truth according to me...” In many cases we are no longer left with the real truth, but instead a distortion thereof. What is even worse is that many people accept distorted truth as the real thing, if the case has been made persuasively enough.
God is a God of truth. Not half-truths, not redefined or distorted truth, not truth that is supposedly more relevant to the times. Cold, hard, objective reality. What God has communicated through His word is “truth” (Jn. 17:17). It is the fact of the matter. What He has commanded or instructed in His word must be followed in order to be true to Him.
Some today try to argue that God’s truths can be changed, though they might not put it in quite those words. For example, God instructed Noah to build the ark of “gopher wood” (Gen. 6:14). Would it have mattered if Noah had used some other kind of wood? After all, some might reason, wasn’t the important thing that Noah went ahead and built the ark? Did the kind of wood really matter? If Noah had used an alternate wood, what would have happened to the ark when the floods came? Would God have sunk it just because Noah used a different kind of wood?
Such is human reasoning. The truth is Noah used gopher wood. He did it just as God had instructed him to do. One of the main reasons God chose to spare Noah and instruct him to build the ark was because Noah had a history of being faithful to God, which means he was true to God’s teachings and instructions. When God told him to do something, Noah did it. If Noah had used a wood other than that instructed by God, he would not have been true to God. Many similar illustrations could be given throughout the Bible.
Jesus stated that those who want to truly worship God must worship Him in “truth” (Jn. 4:24). When God says a person must repent of his sins and be baptized in order to be forgiven (Acts 2:38), that is exactly the way it has to be. Since the word “baptism” means “immersion” (Rom. 6:4), nothing but immersion will suffice. When God’s word instructs those who worship Him to offer the sacrifice of their lips (Heb. 13:15), why would anyone want to add the noise of an instrument? When God has instructed that we remember the death of His Son through the Lord’s Supper on the first day of the week (Acts 20:7), why would some reason that some other day will be just as good? When God has instructed His church to meet together in worship to Him upon the first day of the week (Heb. 10:25), why would anyone who cares about being true to God not be there each first day? When a person can clearly read that the Lord adds the saved to His church (Acts 2:47), how can that person believe that being a part of the church does not matter?
God’s truth is the standard for our being true to Him. We cannot change His truth and still have the truth. If we want to be faithful to God, we must follow Him His way, and that is the truth!…
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Gary L. Hutchens