2002-12-06 - Preserving the Truth
Not Just for Presbyterians, Part 4
Ephesians 4:15 (NASB) But speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ.
You may be wondering what I did the first time I read those words, "preserving the truth." I thought, "Do I really have a role to play in this? I'm not a preacher or a teacher (though I am now). But we all have opportunities - even responsibilities to preserve the truth.
So where do we start? With ourselves. We need to search the Scriptures for ourselves, as Paul instructed us. We need to hold up every sermon we hear, every article or book we read, everything - letting the light of God's word shine on it. We need to be careful about whom we look to for teaching.
And of course, if we do teach or lead in any other way, we have an immense responsibility to be certain that everything we share is Biblically sound. But what about those of us who are not in positions of leadership?
Perhaps you have a relative or friend who thinks of Christ as "just one - among many - means for salvation." Or maybe you know someone who tries to "add to" the Bible, by imposing man-made rules on others (Women shouldn't wear pants, we shouldn't ever listen to secular music etc.). Or possibly you run into people who misuse the Scriptures to promote racism (people shouldn't marry people of other colors etc.). Every time we hear someone misquoting the Bible or misrepresenting God, we have a responsibility to gently (one of my favorite words in the Bible) point out the truth.
Don't read this as saying "tell your husband what is wrong with his beliefs," put a devotional "in the face" of a loved one or on their mirror etc. We need to remember Paul's admonition to deal with each other lovingly and gently. If we "preach at" people, or approach them critically, usually we will simply alienate people and close them off even more to the truth.
But we will be remiss if we don't say anything; we will be "leaving undone the things we should have done." I encourage you to pray and look around you, discovering the opportunities God provides for you to play your part in preserving His truth.