David’s rhetorical question from Psalm 11:3 has been heavy on my mind for several weeks: “If the foundations are destroyed what can the righteous do?” Last week I urged readers to faith even in these troubled times when it seems certain that the foundations of all we know to be true are being destroyed. I am confident in calling God’s people to faith because verses 4 through 7 of Psalm 11 remind us that God is still in control, He is still the standard of righteousness, and He loves His people who perform righteous deeds. I encouraged readers to marinate themselves and their children in God’s word as a way of increasing faith.
I am going to push that thought just a little further here by encouraging you to “buy the truth” in accordance with Proverbs 23:23. You see, what we are facing in this age are what we might call competing truths. On the one side we have the Truth as it is given to us by God in the perfect Logos, Jesus Christ, revealed to us in the Spirit-breathed Word of the Holy Scriptures. On the other side we have various truths that come to us most frequently in the form of ideologies and isms. As is often the case when trying to discern what is really true, we find lots of overlap and intersection and entanglement among all these competitors. That is no surprise, of course, because the very best lies are always based in enough truth to make them plausible.
This brings us back to buying the truth, or Truth. Most ideologies and isms don’t cost much to buy into, and played out to their ends, usually give you what you pay for. Laying hold of the Truth, however, is a way of life, but one that gives life everlasting. God has purchased His people with the blood of His Son Jesus Christ—that we cannot buy—and called us into a way of living that is rooted in the Truth of His Word. Embracing this way of life often costs us the very things the world values. God’s people, given the choice, do not trade their walk with Christ, their following in the way of life God calls us to, for riches or fame or a false liberty the world tries to call us into.
The Truth God calls His people to embrace and live by is scorned by the unbelieving world and undermined at every opportunity. Let’s not forget Satan’s “Has God indeed said…?” in the Garden. Because of this scorn and even attack, a believer who is weak in his or her understanding of the Truth might be persuaded to buy into some ideology that offers just enough truth to fool him or her. This is where the believer must be on guard! As the Proverb says, “Buy the truth, and do not sell it, also wisdom and instruction and understanding.”
The believer must be steeped in God’s Truth, ready to give an answer for the hope he clings to, ready to give an answer to the serpent of the garden or a handsome boy who shows a “new” way that appeals to base human needs and desires. There is no shortcut for being steeped in the Word—one must take up and read. We have the guarantee that the Holy Spirit will use God’s word to work in us, that He will give us understanding, even pray for us when we don’t know how, but we must take up God’s word and read it.
There is no other way to grow our faith and guard our souls in this difficult age than to consume God’s word daily, allowing it to change us, allowing it to have its way with molding and shaping our loves and affections. We should come to it daily, praying that God would change us, painful as it may be, so that we can become like Christ. That is buying the Truth. Likewise, our children from the youngest and tenderest age must be steeped in God’s word. It is only when we and our children consume the Truth so that it is re-making us in the likeness of Christ that we can walk securely in these dangerous and troubled times, confident that God is in control and bold to speak the Truth in the face of so many would be truths.