Saturday, May 18, 2013

Is Telling the Truth Important to You?

Compelled to Tell the Truth
Barbara Henderson

In today’s world the truth and nothing but the truth seems to be only important to those attempting to discredit, change, and ridicule the actual pure truth.  Everywhere, from the highest authority to the lowliest human being, the truth will always be ‘spun’ in a particular direction. It is adjusted in a way to make someone look better than they are and someone else look worse than they are.  It is frustrating to those who love the truth.  Ultimately, the truth makes life simpler for everyone. If the unvarnished truth is told in the first place there is no need to revise statements or even remember anything except the truth.  The truth is important to everyone, but it is especially important to Christians.  Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life.  No one gets to God the father except through Jesus Christ the Son.  We are compelled to speak this truth because:

1.  People are in danger of hell.  If they don’t hear the truth about the situation how will they come to understand their danger? How will they come to understand that they personally have a choice. The power to cast a soul into hell belongs to God Almighty alone.  God has given His authority to no earthly spokesperson, teaching, or so-called holy book.  Scripture is very clear on that matter.  The truth of the Bible is far more important than ‘getting along’ with those who either reject the Bible and its teachings, those who wish to blend the Bible teachings into other theologies, or those who have never heard the gospel preached or taught.  People are still in danger of hell. The most compassionate thing for those who know the truth is to tell the truth.
2.  Telling the truth reinforces the truth.  Those who know the truth need to hear it often.
3.  There is danger of error slipping in when Christians don’t know the truth.  The danger is always with us because Satan (or his followers) is always with us.
4.  The baton of faith must be passed on to the next generation.  It begins in the family, but it is not excluded to the family. 
5.  The truth compels Christians to speak.  The mouth of a true believer will ultimately not be silenced. 
6.  God requires us to speak the truth. Obedience demands that we speak up.
7.  The world is full of deceivers.  They speak lies boldly.  Sometimes they speak lies not only boldly, but also knowingly and willingly.  The balance to their lies is for Christians to tell  the truth. 
8. Unsound doctrine leads to unsound living.  When even small things that offend God are accepted as permissible in a church, then members of that church will incorporate those things into their personal lives.  When liberal lines are drawn between avoiding certain things of the world and accepting others, people will take it seriously and actually do what they want to believe is allowed.  I won’t get into immodest clothing, gutter language, or alcohol use, because I think these things stem at least in part from unsound doctrine.  Unsound doctrines being taught currently include errors in the Bible, accepting traditions of man above scripture, new ‘revelations’, and results prove success.  I especially hate the ‘results prove success’ error because it leads people to believe that if a church is growing that it is automatically doing the will of God and preaching the truth.  The social gospel currently being preached by so many churches sets transforming society above preaching the absolute truth of scripture.  I would ask these so-called preachers of the gospel to please admit they are not working for Jesus Christ and call themselves something else. Surely they could come up with some sort of noble sounding name, get tax exemptions, and openly adore their god of humanism without dragging Christianity through the sewer with them.  Of course they aren’t going to do that because they are undercover operatives for their father the devil. Their job is to make their false gospel appealing to whatever people are wanting.  For those who want earthly prosperity there is the prosperity gospel.  For those seeking a path to God that doesn’t involve the work of Christ at Calvary, there is the salvation by works gospel.  Entrance into heaven through rituals and traditions is offered in many varieties, so people wanting to get to heaven that way have lots of choices in the actual rituals or traditions from which to choose.
9.  Error builds on error.  It is sort of like fungus and mold growing on top of rotten vegetables.  It is not trivial when you are trying to find an edible potato, and there is no trivial error in doctrine. 
Charles Spurgeon said, ‘Discernment is being able to tell the difference in right and almost right.’ (paraphrased).    
10.  Christians should find themselves compelled to live the truth in addition to being compelled to tell the truth.  The honest truth can be spoken continually, but it will have little effect when the speaker is obviously not living according to what he/she is speaking.  I have seen some people who are able to speak the truth live utterly degenerate lives.  It is almost as though they believe they have the right to break a few rules because of their ‘service’ to the Lord.  They are reprehensible, and the damage they do is incalculable. It is blasphemy to claim to be a Christian and not act like a Christian!

The world in which we live is becoming more and more anti-Christian/anti-Christ.  I believe part of the nature of a practicing Christian is to want peace.  We want peace with those around us.  We want world peace.  Confrontation is hard, because confrontation is definitely not peaceful!  The Bible actually says, ‘Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.’ (Psalm 34:13)  Christians need to remember that this is speaking within the context of things allowed and dis-allowed in the instructions given to us in the Bible. 
Ezra 9:12 gives us definite instructions when it comes to actually joining with those who are not followers of God Almighty. It says, ‘Now therefore give not your daughters unto their sons, neither take their daughters unto your sons, nor seek their peace or their wealth for ever: that ye may be strong, and eat the good of the land, and leave it for an inheritance to your children for ever.’  The Bible could not be any clearer on this subject. Christians are not to join with the ungodly even though they live amongst them!
However, God understands that we live in the world and in places that are certainly not considered godly.  In Jeremiah 29:7 we are told, ‘And seek the peace of the city whither I have caused you to be carried away captives, and pray unto the Lord for it: for in the peace thereof shall ye have peace.’
We are not to become part of the world.  We are not to join ourselves with the enemies of Christ in order to make peace or to do good or to make our own lives easier.  We are to seek the peace of the place where we live, because when there is peace in our land, we the people of the land are also at peace.  The best possible way to seek peace where we live is to pray that individuals including national leaders personally make peace with God Almighty.  We are also to speak out regarding Jesus Christ and the peace that passes understanding through Christ alone.  Obviously, those who reject Christ are not going to be peaceful with those who choose Him!  However, peace between Christians and non-Christians based on ‘mutual likes and things in common’ is not true peace.  It is a prelude to war.

Those who follow false religions are always someone other than meets the eye.  The leaders especially are going to talk one way and live another way.  You cannot trust them.  They do not love the truth.  They love their own way.  To these people you should speak the truth when the opportunity arises.  However, it is not your job to become associated with them in any way other than evangelism. Don’t hang around with them in the hope of converting them. Don’t listen to their counsel because they are not wise.  Don’t join with them in ‘worthy causes’.  In other words, we are not to attempt to find common ground with false teachers and religions; because there is no common ground.  Finding common ground with Christianity and false religions is an attempt to find commonalities between heaven and hell.  There are no commonalities.  It is also cowardly.  Fear of peer censure is not an excuse to go along with what God clearly states as wrong.  The desire to ‘get a job done’ or ‘make a difference’ on your own time table is not a valid reason to join forces with someone attempting to accomplish something that sounds like a good idea to you. 
Never forget the first book of Psalms.  The blessed man does not ‘walk in the counsel of the ungodly’ – he doesn’t even go near enough to them to pay attention to what they are saying.  If they are scorning God Almighty there is nothing worthwhile that they can say.  There is not ‘good in all religions’.  All people are not ‘going to the same place’. The blessed man ‘does not stand in the same place as sinners’ – he doesn’t stop to chat with them.  And the blessed man never sits down with the scornful.’  He never gets comfortable with the enemies of Christ!
Up to this point all of history from creation to this very hour and second could be called a ‘prelude to the final battle’.  We are not going to change the fact that Armageddon is coming, but when that mighty and horrible day of battle arrives, there will be specific individuals on God’s side who are there because specific Christians spoke honestly and freely when an opportunity to tell the truth arose. Every soul is important to God. Every Christian is important to God.  The actions of every individual believer matters to God and they matter to those they know, love, and even those they only know causally.  How we behave matters.  What we say matters.  We are compelled to tell the truth because the truth matters. 
Thank you for reading my article.