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Posts Tagged ‘walking in the truth’

Pierced by Truth

March 14th, 2013 2 comments

worshiper

In my recent blog entitled, Silver-plated Christians, we talked about our need to be permeated by the truth. Yet, if we are completely honest, we’ll all have to admit that our silver content has room for improvement. Jesus was 100% silver and we, his disciples, are seeking a greater share of the market!

David, the great King of Israel, was no different. You remember his story. David sees a beautiful woman bathing and decides he’d like to make her his wife. The only problem is that she’s already married! To make matters worse, Bathsheba is married to one of David’s mighty men of valor. Uriah was one of David’s fiercest soldiers, a faithful friend and a loyal supporter. While all of these truths undoubtedly passed through David’s mind, the passions in his heart triumphed and he slept with Bathsheba.

David knew what he did was wrong, but he continues to live a lie. Then the unimaginable happens. He gets word that Bathsheba is pregnant. The lie is growing. What will David do now? Uriah is away from home fighting for his King! Uriah cannot be identified as the father of the child when he’s not even home! David quickly sends word to the troops and tells his loyal friend to come home and to spend a few days with his wife. Uriah is such a man of integrity, he would not even entertain the idea of leisure when his fellow countrymen were at risk. He says to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah are staying in tents, and my master Joab and my lord’s men are camped in the open fields. How could I go to my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? As surely as you live, I will not do such a thing!” (II Samuel 11:11) David pleads with him to stay one more day. At the King’s invitation, he was wined and dined until David made him drunk (vs. 12) in hopes that Uriah would succumb to his fleshly desires. David plan fails again, as Uriah spends the evening sleeping on a mat with the servants instead of returning to the comforts of his own home (vs. 13). The lie is getting even bigger! What will David do?

David does the unimaginable. He kills his loyal friend! (verses 14-16) Rather than expose the corruption in his own heart, David merely polishes the silver veneer on the surface. The cancer rages within, but everything on the outside appears to be just fine. He even goes through the motions of grieving for his dear friend while he internally makes plans for Bathsheba’s arrival at the castle as his new “trophy” wife. A new coat of veneer is applied and the lie falls into a season of dormancy. On the outside it’s “business as usual.” He is David, God’s anointed, the man after God’s own heart. But in his heart of hearts he knows something is terribly wrong.

God, in His great love and mercy for David, allowed a considerable amount of time to pass, perhaps to allow his son the opportunity to repent for his sin and to face up to the truth of what he had done. But when the stronghold of deception became impenetrable, God sent Nathan the prophet (II Samuel 12). Nathan tells David about a terrible injustice that has taken place in his kingdom. A wealthy man with many sheep steals the one precious lamb from his neighbor and slaughters it for a party he is throwing. David knows “truths” about justice. He is furious! He rages with anger and immediately pronounces the death penalty for this terrible act of injustice (verses 5,6).

Nathan takes the sword of truth and slashes through the cords of deception holding David in blindness and hypocrisy: “You are the man!” (verse 7). The lie has been brought into the light. The deception has been pierced by the truth. David is undone. David was now face to face with the ugliness of his heart and with the incredible consequences of his sin.

David wrote the fifty-first Psalm as a result of a profound and painful revelation of his own innermost parts. “Surely you desire truth in the inner parts,” he writes (Psalm 51:6). He is finally honest about his condition: “For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight” (verses 3, 4). He cries for mercy, grace and forgiveness. He begs the Lord to restore him to the joy and fellowship of His presence (verses 11, 12) and to give him a “pure heart” (verse 10).

How we all need more friends named “Nathan,” people who are willing to tell us the truth about ourselves and to expose areas of hypocrisy. David’s testimony is a powerful reminder of the deceptive nature of sin and our need to remain broken and dependent upon the Spirit of Truth(Psalm 51:17). Check your heart right now. Is there anything resisting exposure to the light?

Shatter the Boxes

March 8th, 2013 4 comments

glass

Do You Want to Be Made Whole?

Jesus asked this rather obvious question to a man who had been crippled for thirty-eight years! Jesus understood the deeper issues involved. To be able to walk, he needed more that healthy feet. He needed to be made whole – body, soul and spirit. No compartmentalization. No boxes. Jesus saw this man from a holistic perspective. He was a life in need of transformation.

This is the starting place in our “walking in the truth.” Are we willing to let Jesus shatter our boxes? Will we allow the light of His truth to examine every area of our lives to expose all of the fragments and inconsistencies? Will we allow him to topple the false idols in our hearts and to expose every deceptive thought or desire?

We all want to walk. The quest is, “Do we want to walk in the way, in the truth and in the life?” (John 14:6) Our cry should not be, “God, give me more truth,” but rather, “God, make me true!” In my relationship with God, my spouse, my children, my neighbors, my friends and work relationships, my finances, my brothers and sisters in Christ – “in all things” – make me whole.

Do we want this much truth? Are we ready for this much life? Can we handle this much of God?

Walking in the Truth: No Greater Joy

February 25th, 2013 3 comments

shoes

Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well. It gave me great joy to have some brothers come and tell about your faithfulness to the truth and how you continue to walk in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

III John 2-4

The Apostle John uses the metaphor of walking to describe our relationship with “truth.” He could have chosen a number of alternate descriptors – standing, sitting, running or even believing – to make his point. Why “walking in the truth?” And further, why does this bring John the greatest amount of joy?

Perhaps he chose the word “walking” because it is so commonplace and natural. In fact, most of us walk without even thinking about it. It requires no special mental effort to simply walk. Perhaps this is a perfect choice of words for that very reason. There is nothing super-spiritual or lofty about it. It brings truth down into the everyday fabric of our normal lives.

Walking is a part of nearly everything we do. Whether it’s walking to the refrigerator or to and from work, we would be hard pressed to find a more a more inclusive word to describe much of the activity of our lives. Walking in truth should become a natural, all-inclusive, practically unconscious reality of our day to day existence as believers in Christ.

Walking in truth is not something that just happens. Infants and toddlers work very hard to progress from crawling to taking the first big step. Along the way come multiple bumps and bruises. The same is true as we develop our walk in the truth. While truth should be expressed naturally through our lives, we must determine to pursue truth. Like walking, we must pursue truth one step at a time. A parent’s joy comes in watching the walking. Imagine a child who has watched others walk, who believes in the reality of walking, and who can explain both how and why walking occurs, yet they never attempt to walk themselves! This would bring grief and concern to any parent. In similar fashion, we can know the truth and yet not walk in it. The truth is really in us only to the degree that we have learned to walk it out.

Reflection:

Are their areas where the profession of your faith and the expression of your faith are miles apart?

Are their things you acknowledge to be true but have difficulty living out?

Focus on bringing feet to your faith this week!