Scandalous By Jonathan C. Brentner Do you remember when Joel Osteen’s book, Your Best Life…
Is Love More Important Than Truth?
By Mike Gendron
The growing trend in the 21st century church is to suppress doctrinal differences for the sake of unity. Many are saying that we should avoid doctrine because it is divisive. Instead, we supposedly need to focus on just loving Jesus and seek unity with all Christians; but which Jesus? Paul warned that some would come and preach “another Jesus” (2 Cor. 11:4). How can we love the true Jesus without truth? The only way is to be sanctified, or set apart, by the truth of His Word (John 17:17). Sanctified believers, who love Jesus as He is gloriously revealed in Scripture, can never have biblical unity with the cults and world religions who love “another Jesus.”
Those who say that love is more important than truth will point to the words of Paul. He wrote, concerning faith, hope and love, that the greatest of these is love (1 Cor. 13:13). They say that should settle it. Love is greatest. But Paul also wrote, in the same chapter, that love rejoices with the truth (1 Cor. 13: 6). In these days of great deception, relying on love without truth can be fatal. We must love God with all of our mind, which means discerning the true Christ from the many false christs (Matt. 22:37). Love must be the servant of truth because true love loves truth! Those who fail to love the truth are in danger of perishing (2 Thess. 2:10).
Our only protection from deception is to know the truth. Love, by itself, has no defense against false teaching and deception. We must love the truth and hate what is false (Psalm 119:128). Truth gains nothing by being mixed with falsehood, but falsehood gains everything by being mixed with truth. Without the true and pure knowledge of Jesus Christ and His Word, people can easily be led astray to love “another Jesus”.
– Mormons say Jesus is a god but not the eternal God
– Jehovah Witnesses say He is savior but not the eternal God
– Some “Christians” claim Jesus as Savior but not as Lord
– Muslims say He is a prophet but not God
– Catholics and Orthodox deny Jesus is the all-sufficient Savior who finished the work of redemption
– All of these religions and cults reject Jesus as the only mediator between God and man
Those who love and worship a counterfeit Jesus (such as the Catholic Eucharist) are committing the same sin as the Israelites who worshipped God in the form of a golden calf. God displayed His righteous anger by putting 3000 to death for committing the fatal sin of idolatry (Exodus 32:28-35). We must love God by walking according to His commandments (2 John 1:6). True worshippers will worship God in truth (John 4:23). Our love of God must never compromise the Word of God, which is forever settled in heaven.
Our love for the Lord Jesus will motivate us to be faithful to His Great Commission. We must lovingly confront those who are embracing another Jesus. When we truly love people, we will do what is best for them in the light of eternity. It starts with speaking the truth in love (Eph. 4:15). To love someone in light of eternity is to share the truth of God’s Word, which will set them free from the bondage of deception (John 8:31-32). May our abiding love for the Savior compel us to be ministers of reconciliation by sharing the glorious truth of His Gospel (2 Cor. 5:14-21).