This discovery of truth presents the opportunity to restore things to their intended state. Sometimes we forgot how things are supposed to be because we forgot the truth.
Today we as a nation desperately need truth. We’ve lost our way, we are riddled with sin and loneliness, injustice, despair, and fear – and just like Josiah and Nehemiah, a return to truth will restore us. It starts right here in God’s house.
The truth is in God’s word and Christian’s need to dust it off and stick our snoots in it, and do what it says, not what we feel justified in doing. The Word of the Lord is a Pillar of smoke by day and pillar of fire by night to guide us so we don’t get lost. But we have to deliberately seek it out.
By contrast, the world is loud, social media, politicians, news stations, they pump their “truth” at us each day…and we can get off track in a hurry, same as the Israelites.
So how do we discern if something is truth:
Does it tickle your ear or resonate in your soul? The world tells you what you want to hear, but truth moves deep within you. If it’s truth, It echoes “yes” within your spirit even if it’s hard you know it’s truth.
Does it validate your need to be right or humble you to ensure you are listening to other positions. As believers, we have to stop stating our opinions as fact, we have to stop using scripture to justify our attitudes and fit our feelings and instead listen and value what others have to say…Proverbs 18:17 “The first to speak in court [or FaceBook] sounds right— until the cross-examination begins.”
Isa 55:3 Come to me with ears wide open, listen to me and you will find life.
The simple biological math of truth – we have two ears and one mouth…we need to listen twice as much as we talk and tweet
Does it incite your emotions or quiet your spirit. Truth brings reflection and afterwards confidence, not hostility and and an argumentative mindset. There’s no “Yes, but…” with truth, there’s just “Yes”
Does it lift you AND others or is it exclusive. Truth is something that is best for all and applies to all…if it’s not both, it’s not truth
Does it set free or bind up. Does it bring conviction and hope or does it bring condemnation and despair. Truth always brings hope, because it releases the promises of God
Truth is noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy
Truth does not change…ever. It does not “adapt”, it stands firm and holds all that is anchored to it. And it breaks all that contradict it.
Discovery of truth opens the door to repentance and change
In the presence of truth we surrender and realign
Heaven resonates as we agree
The joy of the Lord becomes our strength to stand on truth
We can then live in the open, no longer hidden and fearful. We have clear eyes and confident consciences.
Truth is rarely convenient and often confrontational. It has to be that way, because until we are inconvenienced and uncomfortable nothing will change. Truth confronts our beliefs and our biases, and without that confrontation there is no growth.
Right now as a country we need our biases confronted, our default filters and perspectives that do not consider other races as peers and equals. The default that a person is automatically lesser or even evil because he/she is Black is WRONG and must be thrown down.
Here is what God’s Truth, His Word says about Equality
Gen 1:27 “So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
Psa 139:16 every day for every person ordained by God before one came into being
Col 3:11 – “Here there is no Gentile or Jew, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.”
God’s Truth does not tolerate injustice Isa 58:6 “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?”
Isa 56:1 “This is what the Lord says: “Be just and fair to all. Do what is right and good, for I am coming soon to rescue you and to display my righteousness among you.”
Prov 31:9 “Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.”
Psalm 67:4 God rules the nations of the earth with equity
Phil 2:3 “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”
“My dear brothers and sisters, how can you claim to have faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ if you favor some people over others? —well, doesn’t this discrimination show that your judgments are guided by evil motives?”
But if you favor some people over others, you are committing a sin. You are guilty of breaking the [Royal] law.”
Pvbs 20:10 “False weights and unequal measures — the Lord detests double standards of every kind.”
You have just heard God’s truth about equality.
But hearing alone will not produce fruit in us, we must be good soil. We must let it soak in and align with it. align = agree the truth is right and submit to follow what it says. When we align with these truths about equality, our biases come under attack and they must Yield to truth. We are changed internally, in our hearts, our attitudes and our actions
Truth requires us to challenge our initial reactions in light of the evidence. It’s not easy, and it’s not popular. But Jesus wasn’t popular, and a lot of what he did stepped on toes. He interacted with the Samaritan woman at the well, a woman the Jews thought was dirty and lesser than them. He looked past the Jewish reaction and saw her value…and a whole town was saved. There’s lots of reactions today, reactions to injustices, to brutality, reactions in the form of protests and reactions to the protests. A part of our American family, the People of Color are telling the rest of us that they are hurt and they are tired of being treated as lesser. Are your reacting to what they are saying from your own biases…or do you leave open the possibility that your initial reactions might be wrong. What if Jesus stuck to Jewish bias and dismissed the Samaritan woman? What if we continue to dismiss others based on our biases? What if Colin Kapernick kneeling during the anthem was not about disrespecting the flag, but was pointing out that the nation under the flag does not treat all people equally? My initial reaction was one of anger towards what I perceived as disrespect to our flag and subsequently our nation. But the overwhelming evidence since that moment, and especially over the last two months, has convinced me my initial reaction was wrong. His protest on that platform was appropriate, unfortunately it has taken subsequent multiple unjust deaths of African Americans and the resulting visible discord in our communities to open my eyes. I’ve asked God to forgive me and to continue to raise my awareness. Here’s the ultimate question that I believe is facing our church and our nation from Isa 55:3: What if truth is revealing itself and we’re not listening? Mercy triumphs over judgement.
I hope that my words brought about some response within you, maybe it resonated, maybe it irritated. I encourage you to let the words, my words, the words of others in response to our present situation, let them settle in you. Then align the words with God’s truth, and act accordingly.