Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Seeking Truth vs. Loving Truth

Among those who dare to believe in truth, the phrase, "seeking truth" is one to be guarded, if not altogether avoided. Perhaps it does not always come packaged in those exact words. The phrase, "Not all who wander are lost" comes close to the sentiment of seeking truth. It is also not uncommon for someone to excuse behavior with the dismissive, "Well, at least I am seeking the truth."

There is a time for seeking. To a certain degree we spend our lives seeking. But there is also a time for decision, for recognition and for acknowledgement of the truth. Intentional life decisions made out of acknowledgement of the truth seem much rarer than a generally expressed idea of seeking truth.

But acknowledgment of the truth is not enough either. Romans 1:18 states that the wrath of God is revealed against the wickedness of men who hold the truth in unrighteousness. It is possible to acknowledge and hold truth and be outside the blessing of God.

What must our response be to truth? We need a desire for the truth that is so strong that it could most accurately be described as love. Very few can come close to the expression of the love of truth as the psalmist in Psalm 119. Consider the difference between the psalmists' declarations of love and the phrase seeking truth:

Behold, I have longed after thy precepts: Quicken me in righteousness (v. 40)

I will delight myself in thy commandments, Which I have loved (v. 47)

The law of thy mouth is better unto me than thousands of gold and silver (v. 72)

Thy law is my delight (v. 77)

Oh how love I thy law! It is my meditation all the day. (v. 97)

And lest this seem to be just a menial thought exercise, it should be said that the consequences of these different approaches are far-reaching. The difference between mere acknowledgement of truth and fervernt love of truth is obedience. There is no necessity for obedience in the former; the latter demands it.

Thy testimonies are wonderful: Therefore doth my soul keep them (v. 129)

To seek truth and never acknowledge truth is to live without purpose. To hold truth and not obey the truth is to live in sin. To love truth, to rejoice in the goodness of the natural and revealed law and to live out of the overflow of this love (obedience) is to live life abundantly.