God values truth. One of the reasons for this is God is a God of truth:
“Because he who is blessed in the earth
Will be blessed by the God of truth;
And he who swears in the earth
Will swear by the God of truth;
Because the former troubles are forgotten,
And because they are hidden from My sight!
– Isaiah 65:16, NASB
When we follow truth, when we value truth, this verse says our former troubles are forgotten. In fact, God will hide them from his sight. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? When we chose to follow Christ, we have chosen to walk in the truth of God’s Word and serve and obey the God of truth. As a result, our sins are forgiven; they are forgotten. God cares deeply about truth. Therefore, when truth is not upheld in a society, watch out! God is greatly displeased. He expects us to value truth. He expects us to uphold truth. He expects us to protect truth. And when we fail to do these things, we are sure to raise His anger. It doesn’t matter what the earthly consequences are for standing up for truth. He expects us to take that stand, even if society doesn’t.
Justice is turned back,
And righteousness stands far away;
For truth has stumbled in the street,
And uprightness cannot enter.
Yes, truth is lacking;
And he who turns aside from evil makes himself a prey
Now the LORD saw,
And it was displeasing in His sight that there was no justice.
– Isaiah 59:14-15, NASB
The Scriptures here indicate that when we don’t follow the path of evil that others around us are on, we make ourselves prey. And that instantly raises up our defenses and makes us say, “I don’t want to be prey!” It’s a natural response. But the thing is, following truth is that important. Regardless of the consequences here in this life, we follow it. If we are to become prey, we become prey. That’s not to say we are to become defenseless and open ourselves up, no matter what. It says that we are supposed to follow the path truth takes us on, regardless of the cost. And if that means we stand up for truth and the evil of this world “punishes” us or we suffer as a result for standing up for truth, so be it. God will take care of the matter in His own time:
And He saw that there was no man,
And was astonished that there was no one to intercede;
Then His own arm brought salvation to Him,
And His righteousness upheld Him.
He put on righteousness like a breastplate,
And a helmet of salvation on His head;
And He put on garments of vengeance for clothing
And wrapped Himself with zeal as a mantle.
According to their deeds, so He will repay,
Wrath to His adversaries, recompense to His enemies;
To the coastlands He will make recompense.
So they will fear the name of the LORD from the west
And His glory from the rising of the sun,
For He will come like a rushing stream
Which the wind of the LORD drives.
“A Redeemer will come to Zion,
And to those who turn from transgression in Jacob,” declares the LORD.
– Isaiah 59:16-20, NASB
Here is the promise of our Redeemer and Savior. For those who do not turn to the truth, “according to their deeds, so He will repay.” When there is no one to intercede for us, God will. Maybe it will take Christ’s return, but we’re supposed to be eternally minded, right? Note, too, the image of Christ given here. It’s not an image of Christ sitting down amidst His lambs. It’s not of Christ welcoming the children upon His lap. Those are peaceful, serene, and calming images. This image is Christ donning armor. It is Christ putting on garments of vengeance. It is Christ the warrior. This is an image to be feared. But only by those who don’t care about truth.
So where are we at? Are we standing for truth, even when it costs us? Are we willing to take that stand even when the price is high? When He looks at us is He astonished because there is no one to intercede on the side of truth? Or does He see us offering ourselves up, willing to be prey to those who do evil if that’s where standing up for the truth leads? Where we stand matters for God is a God of truth.