The Sacrifice of Speaking the Truth in Love

Speaking the truth in love is risky - it will advance the kingdom of God but you might get slammed in the process.

Our current culture worships at the feet of political correctness via the path of least offense. We are enslaving the next generation in chains of fear-based civility. As a result, they have no clue how to handle offenses against them. No one dares speak a word that could be construed by anyone as offensive even if genuine love delivers that truth. Therefore, there are few people today who know how to navigate past offense. To disagree with someone is seen as a hate crime.

Many people who declare they are offended are actually using their supposed offense as a way to manipulate others into silence or worse yet, as a way to condone their destructive behavior or sin. While Christians should never tolerate hate speech, slander, or bullying, there are times that we must take a stand for truth.

Case in point – one Monday evening several years ago, a Dietrich Bonhoeffer quote on the subject of abortion was next in the queue of the to-be-posted quotes on the Daily Christian Quote mailing list that went out to thousands of people each day. I had previously faced criticism for two previous quotes that referenced abortion, two quotes out of thousands I had sent out on the list prior to that evening. I had a choice. I could simply skip over that quote, or I could post it, as it was next in line to go. I decided to post it, I wasn’t trying to make a point, I was merely following the mandate of the Daily Christian Quote. To provide quotes harvested from many streams of Christian faith that spoke truth, encouragement, exhortation, and love.

Sure enough, the next morning I received scathing emails in protest.

While we need to be respectful, honoring, and gracious in speech and action, we must not stop speaking truth, even in the face of growing persecution. As a Canadian, I am spared the dire consequences many of my brothers and sisters face worldwide for speaking God’s truth. However, cultural pressures to conform to the ‘god of inoffensiveness’ increases at an alarming rate. Disapproval from political pundits and the ridicule from Hollywood now have given way to more serious consequences. Loss of employment, civil lawsuits, and human rights legislation now threaten to silence our ability to speak our truth.

John 15:18-20 – “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world. Therefore, the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you.”

Be of good cheer! He will not abandon us when we are called to stand before our persecutors.

Matthew 10:16-20 – “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore, be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. But beware of men, for they will deliver you up to councils and scourge you in their synagogues… but when they deliver you up, do not worry about how or what you should speak. For it will be given to you in that hour what you should speak; for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you.”

Revelation 12:11 – “They have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.”

Truth, when spoken from a place of genuine love and concern, damages the kingdom of darkness and advances the kingdom of God.

All Bible verses, unless otherwise attributed, are from the English Standard Version (ESV).

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Until Next Week

©2010, 2016 Katherine Walden

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