Friday, May 15, 2009

The Narrow Road of Truth – Part 4 (conclusion)

by David Barnett

‘Pluralism’ - that idea that ‘truth is in the eye of the beholder’, is today being accepted in many churches, under many guises. One of the greatest advocates of ‘pluralism’ within the professing Church is the ‘Emerging Church’ movement. This movement is reluctant to lay claim to any of the foundational doctrines of historical Christianity, and this in a bid to promote ‘dialogue’ with an increasingly pluralistic world. This movement has therefore adopted the new view of ‘religious tolerance’ as a means toward this end. People within this movement are caught between a rock and a hard place when they are confronted with Scriptures like those mentioned above, which deal with definite, authoritative statements about objective truth. At this point, I would greatly encourage those Christians who value the truth to read a copy of D.A. Carson’s book, ‘Becoming Conversant with the Emerging Church’, which deals in depth with the ideologies of the Emerging Church movement, and its historical roots.

Christians, this philosophy of ‘pluralism’ ought not to be found in the Church of the Living God! The Church of God is not vague in its thinking about truth; rather it is the ‘the pillar and ground of the truth’ (1 Tim. 3:15)! We’re admonished to proclaim the truth (Matt. 10:27), preserve and pass on the truth (1 Tim. 4:11, 2 Tim. 2:2), and contend for the truth (Jude 3). ‘Buy the truth, and do not sell it’ (Prov. 23:23), whatever price the world offers you. Bind the truth around your neck (Prov. 3:3), that it may always be with you, instructing you along the Way. Truth is precious to the believer, because of the Christ of whom it declares. The Spirit affirms only ‘one faith’, because there is but ‘one Lord’ (Eph. 4:5). This one Lord is He of whom it was written, ‘we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth’ (Jn. 1:14). Truth became incarnate in the Person of Jesus Christ, and that is why this issue is of such vital importance.

Yes, it is readily acknowledged, Scripture does on the odd occasion teach ‘pluralism’: there will be a ‘plurality’ of false doctrines which will plague the church, brought in secretly by a plurality of false teachers and prophets. But when it comes to the foundations of ‘the’ faith, there is but one Truth: ‘I am the way, the truth, the life’ (Jn. 14:6). If there is any validity to the claims of many modern ‘evangelicals’ that what is true for someone is ‘true’ by virtue of the fact that it is believed; then Christ prayed in vain in Gethsemane, ‘O My Father, if it is possible let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will... O My Father, if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done’ (Matt. 26:39, 42). The Father’s will was done: the Son was nailed to the cross, and made to drink the cup of God’s wrath full-strength, as He bore the sins of His people. And with His crucifixion on Calvary’s cross, Christ crucified ‘pluralism’ once and for all, and declared plainly to the world: ‘No one comes to the Father except through Me’. There is but one way, and that is the narrow way through Christ and His cross.