A Passion for Truth!


A Passion for Truth!

 

Bible (13)

Why is Truth so Important to You? 

Richard Hollerman 


What is more important than the food you eat, the sleep you take, the water you drink, the job you have, and the relationships you enjoy?  What is more vital than anything else to your life now and your eternal life after death?  What is it that is light to dispel darkness, food that fills the spiritual appetite, drink that quenches the thirst, and the remedy that heals the soul?  I refer to the truth of Almighty God, revealed in His inspired and authoritative Word, and embodied in the life, work, and teachings of Jesus Christ!

My Background 

Scripture repeatedly urges us to seek the truth, believe the truth, obey the truth, and share the truth with others!  This has been my life-long passion, ever since I opened my Bible at age 15 and was shocked to learn aspects of truth that I never knew before.  This was an eye-opening discovery for a sincere young man in his mid-teens.  I hadn’t searched for God’s will before but simply assumed that what I had believed and the way I had lived was pleasing to God.  When I began to read and study God’s Word, I soon discovered that God had revealed vast riches of truth and He wanted me to respond to it with all of my heart!

Since that time in my teen years, I have taken great interest to focus on the truth of God.  Rather than spend much time on superfluous matters during my life, I spent thousands of hours diligently searching and researching the written Word of God.  Since I came to see that I was lost in sin while believing error and living in ignorance, and since I realized that the printed page (both the Bible as well as Biblically related literature of all kinds) was an avenue to truth, my life-long orientation has been to read, research, and write about what God has revealed to us in His Word of Truth.

Over the years, probably many have wondered why I have spent so much time and effort to learn the Scriptures, memorize the Scriptures, and share the truths of Scripture.  It is because the Truth and only the Truth will set us free, save us, and lead us to God’s eternal kingdom.  That Word of Truth is like a divine map, taking us from this present sinful world to a future place of peace, bliss, and blessing!

As I reflected on my experience of spiritual and Scriptural ignorance, I could see that others also were in the same situation.  Millions think they know the truth, but instead, they believe and practice error of all kinds. The Word of God warns, “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12).  The majority of people just assume that their parents and spiritual leaders have told them the truth.  After all, they and their parents before them believed a certain way and went through certain religious activities, thus it must be right.  This is the reasoning of so many.  But I could see that just as I had been ignorantly mistaken and spiritually deceived, so many others are as well.  Truth is the only remedy to this tragic situation!

After my teenage years, I learned as much as I could through incessant Bible reading.  I went to a half dozen schools and institutions in my quest to understand God’s word and to better apply it to my life, as well as to help to prepare me to share it with others.  I also sought to better understand the will of God through carefully-chosen books, booklets, magazines, journals, and tracts.  Eventually, I collected many thousands of volumes in this quest for God’s truth and will.  Besides my Biblical library used in careful research, I developed an intricate and detailed filing system of about 45 file cabinets.  I chose a place of employment where I worked for many years, and much of this time enabled me to read, study, and write up to 27 hours a week on the job, at least at the beginning of my tenure.

Sharing the Truth

In an effort to share some of the fruit of my studies, God enabled me to produce and distribute a monthly paper entitled True Discipleship for some years—the same title as our website.  Over the past 32 years, God has enabled us to produce as many as 200 pamphlets and larger books on a variety of Biblical subjects.  Only one book was professionally published and a second one is waiting for a publisher.  Through my life, I had a passion for God’s saving truth, and I determined–with God’s help and with the Spirit of Truth’s enablement– to understand it, believe it, submit to it, and share it as widely as the Lord would allow me.

We realize that most people simply do not understand this passion and earnest interest in the Word of God and the will of God.  They would label it fanaticism, or unbalanced living, or a radical obsession, or just plain craziness!  We are not deterred with such epithets and innuendos.  It is to be expected, especially in a context of superficial living, entertainment mentality, or traditional religion.  In fact, Jesus Himself was not understood by His contemporaries (cf. Mark 3:20-21; John 6:60, 66; 7:5, 15; 15:18-25; 18:37-38).  But those who are of the truth know how essential it is to have a godly pursuit of the real meaning of God’s Word so that they may know what the will of the Lord truly is.  We must lay aside our traditions, our religion, our preconceived ideas, our pleasures, our friends, and even our family, if this would impede an honest quest for the truth of God!  We must choose truth above everything else!

True Discipleship

Our website, True Discipleship, is another attempt to share the truth of Scripture as widely as possible.  Personally, I prefer the printed page in my own reading and research–perhaps since this has been so much a part of my life.  Since I initially learned the truth through Christian literature from many sources, I’ve been oriented to that means of outreach.  For many years, I distributed tens of thousands of tracts through the mail and on the streets and in public places, especially at public religious events and conferences.

Although few responses came through this means, I was encouraged with the thought that at least this effort was giving many people the opportunity to learn the truth that they may be saved.  I couldn’t control their own response–whether positive or negative–but I was giving them at least one opportunity in their life!  They could never again say that they didn’t have the opportunity to know God’s will and respond to it.  Every mouth in judgment would be closed–for indeed they could have known the truth, a truth that dispels ignorance, gives light to those in darkness, and can save from sin (cf. Rom. 1:16; 3:19).

I realize that through the internet, thousands upon thousands of people may be reached, almost without limit–from New Zealand to France, from China to Ghana, from Australia to Thailand, and from the United States to Peru!  The potential is nearly endless!  As Paul stated of proclaimers of the gospel of Christ, “Their voice has gone out into all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world” (Romans 10:17-18).  In this sense, it is possible to proclaim, through the internet, to reach the ends of the earth with the saving message of Jesus Christ and the truth of God found in Holy Scripture!

Our website started in a small and seemingly insignificant way.  It was very slow in beginning but now is beginning to accelerate.  By God’s grace, we want to continue to add informative and encouraging articles (as well as poems, letters, etc.), as much as we can.  If only there were more hours in the day to work on this enterprise!  May our loving and worthy God enable us to reach even more people by this contemporary, marvelous means!  Although largely dominated by Satan’s agenda, secular reasoning, humanistic perspectives, worldly entertainment, and even religious falsehood, we rejoice that God can and does use this media means to communicate the truth of His Word, the gospel of Jesus Christ, and the way of holiness!

Do you have an appreciation for the truth?  Or have you been content to merely believe what you are told, what you have accepted from your parents or church, or what society and educational institutions tell you to believe?  This is extremely dangerous!  Be willing to search the Word of God yourself, with a humble attitude of prayer and inquiry, so that God may reveal the truth to you.

How Vital is Truth to You?

Let’s now turn to the Word of God for His own perspective on truth.  Let’s notice some of the many things that Scripture tells us about the truth of God or the Word of God.  You may wish to look up these verses in your own Bible and mark them for future reference.

In His prayer to the Father, Jesus said, “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth” (John 17:17).  This says that the Truth of God will “sanctify” or set us apart from sin and the world.  But notice what else the Bible says about Truth.  Jesus Himself is called “the truth” (John 14:6), and He was “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).  Our Lord also said that He was sent into the world to “to testify to the truth” (19:37; cf. 5:33).  Further, the Holy Spirit is called “the Spirit of truth” (John 14:17; 15:26; 16:13), and “the Spirit is the truth” (1 John 5:6).   We also know that God is the One who is true (1 John 5:20) and is called “the only true God” (John 17:3).  Indeed, the Truth of God is utterly important!

Why is the truth so vital to us?   Jesus declared that “you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (8:32).  The Christian is to manifest the truth (2 Cor. 4:2), speak the truth (2 Cor. 12:3), and patiently speak to people so that they may come to “the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim.2:25).  We must see that the gospel is “the word of truth” (Col. 1:5) and “the message of truth” (Eph. 1:13)!

How should we respond to the truth?  We must “believe the truth” (2 Thess. 2:12) or have “faith in the truth” (2:13), as well as obey the truth (Gal. 5:7; 1 Pet. 1:22).  In fact, we must have “the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:4; Heb. 10:26) in order to be saved (1 Tim. 4:3).  Along with being saved, people are born again “by the word of truth” (James 1:18).

True believers are “the pillar and support of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:15).  The Christian is to handle “the word of truth”accurately (2 Tim. 2:15), and must speak the truth in love (Eph. 4:15).  The way of Christ is called “the way of the truth” (2 Peter 2:2).  We are to be “fellow-workers with the truth” (3 John 8). Further, God wants us to “worship in spirit and truth” (John 4:23-24).

In contrast, some “oppose the truth” (2 Tim. 3:8), and “turn away their ears from the truth” (4:4),   have “gone astray from the truth” (2 Tim. 2:18; James 5:19), or “turn away from the truth” (Tit. 1:14).  Sadly, the great majority of people will be condemned who do not receive “the love of the truth” (2 Thess. 2:10)!  Yes, unless we have this love of the truth, we simply cannot be saved!  People would rather watch the foolishness of TV, listen to the blare of worldly music on their radio, attend a favorite sports event, feed their addiction to the internet or computer games, or merely sleep–rather than devote their time, efforts, money, and abilities to learn, believe, obey, and teach the truth of God!

We must make sure that the truth is in us (1 John 1:8; 2:4) and “abides in us” (2 John 2).  We are to walk in the truth (2 John 4; 3 John 3).  Christians are described as those who are “of the truth” (1 John 3:19) and “know the truth” (2 John 1).

Can we now see how important the truth of God is?  Are you determined now to diligently search the Word of Truth and to share your findings with all who will read or listen?  Will you follow Jesus who is the Truth, obey the word of the Spirit of Truth, and glorify the God of Truth?

Perhaps you can understand a little now, why our website exists, why we’ve produced so much Christian literature, and why we take the stand we do for the truth–regardless of the cross of suffering and in spite of the consequences.  With Paul, we are determined to make known “the truth of the gospel” as far as we can, with the help of God (Gal. 2:14).  We pray that you will be blessed with what you learn at True Discipleship and that you will let others know that we are here!  We also hope that you will read our articles and literature and compare it with the Scriptures, that you may know the truthfulness of the Word of God (Acts 17:11).

Give Me the Truth!

The following short statement has always meant much to me.  It expresses the utter importance that we learn, believe, know, and share the truth.  Read it and be motivated to make the truth of God central in your own life.

Give Me the Truth!

If you are my friend, if you are concerned about my soul, give me the truth.  Do not flatter me.  Do not praise my virtues while remaining silent about my vices.  Do not fear the truth will offend me.  Do not treasure our friendship, our friendly relations, above my salvation.  Do not think that by ignoring my sins, you can help me.  Do not think that being blind to my sins will prove you charitable.  However I may react to it, whatever may be my attitude toward you after you have done it, GIVE ME THE TRUTH!

For the truth, and only the truth, can make me free from the shackles of sin, strengthen me in the pathway of righteousness and lead me to the joys of heaven.  If I am wavering, weak, lukewarm, indifferent, neglectful; if I have been overtaken in a trespass; if I have been drawn into the pleasures of the world; if I have left my first love; if I have been led astray by error, or, if I have done none of these things, but simply need to grow in knowledge and then be edified, GIVE ME THE TRUTH!

                                                     –Bill Crews

 

 

 

 

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