The Truth that Hurts But Heals

Michael Beck

“For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure …” (James 3:16,17)

The wisdom from above is first pure. Without a pure heart one cannot have pure wisdom. Pride corrupts both heart and head. “Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness …” (Ezek. 28:17) Pride will hold on to a debunked “truth.” It will do whatever it needs to do to avoid eating humble pie.

We live in a day when no one wants to be wrong. Even when they know they’re wrong they’re not going to admit it. No way are they going to give their opposition that satisfaction. Nowadays, there is little interest in helpful remedies that would lead to healing and progress. What is more important is to keep up the illusion that we’re on the right side. Facts are not important, unless they make us look good and the other side look bad.

It used to be said one shouldn’t talk about politics or religion. But we are in a day when politics is the new religion, with zealotry on both sides. The new holy wars are not between Catholics and Protestants, they are between the left and the right on the political spectrum. Where has all this bitter envying and strife led us to? Confusion and every evil work.

Scripture is clear: “Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people.” (Proverbs 14:34) We so want to be right; but we’ll never be right, until we’re willing to be wrong. And that requires humility. Humility attracts God’s favor. “God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.” (James 4:6) Lowliness of heart and mind is a prerequisite to gaining true wisdom. “When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.” (Proverbs 11:2)

God has wisdom, understanding, and counsel that He would give to any who ask Him for it. He knows how to resolve conflicts and help us lead quiet and peaceable lives. Without God’s wisdom, we are vicious, like beasts we bite and devour one another. We would sooner die clinging to a bald-faced lie than admit we were wrong about anything, and our foe was right.

God exalts the humble; He brings down the proud. We are presently in a death spiral caused by the sin that God calls an abomination, wherever it is found. “Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.” (Proverbs 16:5)

No religion of any kind can save us, certainly not a political one. Pursue a pure relationship with God. Start by being valiant for the truth, even if it hurts. Humble yourself before God. You may start a chain reaction.

Michael Beck is a pastor in the Dallas, TX area and the main author on Signpost. Receive a daily devotional he publishes every morning via email.