A couple of days ago I addressed the question posed in this title. To prevent you from being confused, if you haven’t read Part 1 yet you should probably do it now!
Today I want to look at another aspect of being “in love,” the way God describes it. Look at Ephesians 4:14-15:
“As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ” (emphasis added).
Truth. Is there such a thing? Some people think there is no truth, and that the only absolute is that there are no absolutes. (This is nothing new! Even Pilate made a similar comment just prior to Jesus‘ crucifixion -- see John 18:38.) But truth does exist. Jesus addressed this when, in reference to God the Father, He said, “Your Word is truth” (John 17:17). The Bible is the source of truth.
Truth prevents us from being like children. My sweet 4-year-old believes whatever my husband and I tell her. It melts my heart (and humbles me), but this also gets my husband into trouble when he attempts to be sarcastic with her! She can’t think in the abstract. She just simply believes whatever we say. It is precious, but we cannot live that way, spiritually speaking. God’s truth guards us from being like children and believing whatever new teaching we hear, even those in the guise of “biblical doctrine.” God’s truth prevents us buying into the most popular teachings of the day, or listening to what a person says instead of what God Himself says (through the Bible). It prevents us from being deceived -- and, oh, how easy it is for any of us to be deceived! There are so many lies we are prone to believe.
Looking at the context of Ephesians 4, the goal is to guard against false teaching as well as build up one another and help each other grow more like the Lord Jesus. The method is to speak the truth (God’s Word), and to speak it in love: with humility, gentleness, patience, and tolerance toward others, striving for unity and peace between one another. (Remember what I mentioned about love in Part 1 of this brief series?) So much more could be said on this subject; I am barely scratching the surface, but I hope this has given you something to ponder without causing confusion in the process!
Hold onto truth. Be ready to speak truth and combat deceitful lies by saturating your minds and heart with God’s Word. May He give us the grace to grow in our ability to filter all through the His truth: our words, thoughts, judgments, perceptions, attitudes, and actions...and be prepared to speak the truth to one another in love.