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The Fear of Truth Seeking & Truth Speaking
We not not typically think of truth-seeking and truth-speaking as "freedoms", but rather as obligations. But they are both. Truth-seeking and speaking should be two of our most prized freedoms. Truth is an item which any tyrant will want to wrap up in his own pocket, and control the access of other folks whom he wants under his thumb.
The first Amendment affirms that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."
That amendment is about the freedom for truth-seeking and speaking. It prohibits the government from inhibiting the freedom of us, the people, to be truth-seekers and truth-speakers -- which is the fundamental of all freedoms. No other freedom makes any sense without that one.
But truth-seeking is scary for ourselves because we might just find that we ourselves have been wrong about some favorite idea of ours. And truth-speaking is scary because it might provoke anger and confrontation from others who disagree. Especially we fear they reactions of those in authority over us.
But, be that as it may, truth-seeking and truth-speaking are the fundamental foundations of any stable and righteous civilization. They are the foundations of salvation itself and of the Kingdom of Heaven.
That foundation is given in Scripture: I Kings 18:17 ff. (Elijah on Mount Carmel); Isaiah 1:18 ("Come, let us reason together..."); Isaiah 43 (all the nations gathered together to have a "debate" on who is God); Luke 7:18-23 (Jesus use of empirical evidence); John 1:1-18, 8:31-33, 14:6 (Jesus, the Way of the Cross is the Way of Truth-Seeking and Truth-Speaking); Romans 1:18 (subversion of truth leads to destruction); 1 Corinthians 15:12-19 (honesty in preaching); 2 Corinthians 4:2 (honesty in discourse). (See also The Bible & Truth-Seeking.)
Islam embodies the opposite of truth-seeking because it requires a submission unadulterated by questions. "I submit", not, "Give me reasons for becoming a Muslim".
The commandments of God are about truth-seeking, for that is the only way obedience to them could lead to truth, or to Him who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
The commandments defined by Love of God and of Neighbor, so truth and love are always together. They comprise the Sword of the Spirit, the truth spoken in love. The law is thus made for man, not man for the law. So our fear of exercising that freedom to be truth-seekers and truth-speakers is self-inhibiting.
In the pagan and secular worlds, freedom is wed to power. Only in the Bible are freedom, truth, and love inextricably joined as family.
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Date Posted - 10/03/2012 - Date Last Edited - 10/19/2012