King Jesus: “the truth” which divides

Love and truth go together in scripture. One is not legitimate without the other. But the fact is that in our society and culture what that means differs from scripture. Their truth is told from their narrative which draws the line on moral judgments only in terms which most any society would agree is right and good. Largely speaking our modernist, postmodernist culture is becoming more and more relativist meaning there are theoretically no absolutes. What might be true for you (as in working for you) may not be true for me. Truth at large depends on what society thinks. And indeed there is a legal precedent for that. One of the United States Supreme Court Justices, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. believed that laws are strictly speaking determined by society, even (from what I remember reading elsewhere) from what a majority thinks. And that judges make decisions on law from the directive of the United States Constitution in terms of what that constitution was based on as well, “common law.” And that there is no law from any deity that must be upheld. Most of the judges of his day generally followed that principle whether or not they agreed in all the details, and that directive up to the present time generally seems to remain in play.

Our response as those who are of God’s grace and kingdom come in Jesus is necessarily in terms of God’s will in Jesus. But it is also in terms of the people we want to reach in love with the gospel. Paul became all things to all people that by all possible means he might save some (the wording of scripture). And he did that for the sake of the gospel and the blessing that comes from it.

The harsh reality is that no matter what we in Jesus say it will be judged as hard, insensitive, unaccepting, intolerance — unloving. Instead of dropping the truth on people before they’re ready, we may need to prayerfully do other things so that by God’s grace and Spirit in and through Jesus, their hearts might be prepared to receive and accept it. The basic truth which will not sit well in our society is that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. That no one can come to the Father, to God apart from him.

We want to win others to the faith. What can attract them? Simply seeing Jesus. Jesus for who he is, God’s revelation in him. That is what we all need, what our neighbors need. But Jesus himself will be the dividing line until kingdom come, when the kingdom of God will become the rule of life on earth when King Jesus returns. Jesus is the good shepherd who lays his life down for the sheep and searches for the lost sheep. He is the gate through which the sheep enter into abundant, eternal life. Some will receive that, sadly others not.

And so love and truth are found in Jesus. Jesus, by his life and teachings, death and resurrection, ascension and pouring out of the Spirit with the promise of his return, brings us back to God’s will in which we reign under God’s rule. A rule by which we in King Jesus live in the life of the Spirit. As we seek to live in and live out the gospel as a witness, as it is proclaimed to the world.