Our Saviour also witnessed ‘the good confession’ by his avowal that there is such a thing as positive truth: – ‘To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth.’
There is need of just such witness as that today. ‘Now be very careful upon that point,’ says one; ‘do you mean to say that there really is such a thing as the truth?’ By your leave, dear sir, or without it, I will venture to assert that there is. ‘That reply is a very bigoted one; because, if there is a doctrine that is the truth, then that which is contrary to it is a lie.’
Precisely so; and by your leave, or without your leave, again I say that it is so, and it must be so in the natural order of things. If this doctrine be true, then that which contradicts it cannot be true. If God has spoken thus, that which is opposed to God, and his truth, is not from him, and cannot stand on the same footing with that which is divinely revealed.
It takes a good deal of courage to say that nowadays. If you go into society, you will get three cheers if you declare that you are an Agnostic – that you do not know anything, you are not sure of anything.
Others say that, whatever a man believes, or does not believe, it really does not matter provided he is perfectly sincere; that is to say, if a man sincerely takes prussic acid, it will not kill him; and if he sincerely goes without food, he will not starve; and if he sincerely refuses to breathe, he will do as well as those that do breathe, which is another lie.
The statue of Christ was set up among the statues of Plato, and Socrates, and other notable men; and some thought it was an honour to Christ, but it was not. They would crown Christ, so they say, among the great ones of earth. Ah! but they cannot crown him unless they ‘crown him Lord of all’. Our blessed Saviour is honestly intolerant. He says, ‘He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned.’ Because he loves the souls of men, he will not bolster up the fiction of universal charity, and even before the Broad-church or No-church Pilate, he says that he has come to bear witness to the truth; so there is the truth, and that which is contrary to it is not truth.
C H Spurgeon, 1884
Living in the World 6 November 2020
This article is the contents of an address first given in February 2020 at the Westminster Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Newcastle, UK. * * * LIVING in the world. How are Christians to live in the world? The question can be answered in many ways. The topic is potentially vast in scope — that becomes more […]
When coming to consider plagues throughout history and some Christian responses, it is appropriate to begin with this extract from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer: O Almighty God, who in thy wrath did send a plague upon thine own people in the wilderness, for their obstinate rebellion against Moses and Aaron; and also, in […]