The Truth and Religion
Indifference toward the truth is shocking, even tragic! We hear people saying, “It does not really matter what you believe.” We hear, “The important thing is that you be honest and sincere.” I would not minimize the importance of being honest and sincere, but these traits of character would not guarantee that what I believe and practice in religion is acceptable to God. Consider the early life of the apostle Paul (Saul of Tarsus). He said, “I verily thought with myself, that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth” (Acts 26:9). In Acts 23:1 we read where Paul said, “Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God until this day.” He did what he thought was right: he was honest and sincere, but he was wrong in what he did. Religion, like anything else, must have a basis or foundation upon which to stand. In the religion of Christ, this basis is the TRUTH. Truth cannot be stretched, and still be truth. Truth is not elastic. The modern conception of the Truth is that it can be and must be stretched to include all the ideas and faiths of men, some of which are contradictory.
One great failure I see among many religious people today is that of recognizing the value and importance of the Truth. Men today elevate human wisdom to the place of the Truth. The importance of the Truth can be seen in the following:
1. Christ came to bear witness unto the Truth. “To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Everyone that is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37).
2. The Holy Spirit came to reveal the Truth. “Howbeit, when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself but whatsoever He shall hear that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come” (John 16:13).
3. The Truth makes one free. “And you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32).
4. Our religion is vain without the Truth. “But in vain do they worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:9).
Many other passages could be given to show the importance of the Truth, but maybe these will be sufficient to stimulate our thinking. In religion, we must not wander from the Truth. A vital question that each person must ask himself: “Can I believe what I believe and practice what I practice in religion and still be found walking in the Truth?”