by Fr Richard Heilman | October 28, 2020 7:52 AM
by Brother Boltoph Osb
More and more it seems that, even in the Church, the proclamation of truth is considered hate. This is disturbing because either those who hold to this incredibly misguided and false concept have either not been paying attention, they’ve been blue pilled, or both.
Jesus spoke the truth and he wasn’t always nice. He called the pharisees a den of thieves, a brood of vipers, dogs. He wasn’t nice.
His truth was inconvenient and it was inconvenient because it was a message fallen man did not want to hear. Yet it was what his Father sent him to do. He was not about convenience; he was about redemption and that included at times embarrassing those who would try to trap him. He spoke the truth.
He did it to his own Mother.
And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them. (luke 2:48-50)
He did it to the rich young man.
Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. (Matt. 19:21)
Abraham did it to the rich man in Hades.
But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence. Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment. Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead. (Luke 16: 25-31)
Jesus spoke forcefully and he was not always nice. That is the truth. He was not concerned about feelings or popularity. That is the truth. The decisions we make here on earth will effect our eternal destination. That is the truth. He commands us to love our neighbor and part of loving our neighbor is being concerned about their eternal souls enough to tell them the truth. Part of loving our neighbor is calling out unrepentant sin in an attempt to bring them back to the Church. That is the truth.
Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment and the second is like unto it; thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (Mark 12:30-31)
Failure to speak the truth, to call out sin, to love your neighbor enough to bring them to repentance is a failure to fulfill what Jesus himself called the First and Great Commandment. It puts popularity before service, public esteem before duty and, quite frankly, puts your own soul at risk. We cannot ignore unrepentant sin or that which brings scandal to the Church. We have a duty to confront it. It is not hatred to do so. To the contrary, it is one of the truest expressions of that love Christ has commanded us to show.
When truth equals hatred, evil wins because a failure to call it out, forcefully, if necessary, is nothing more than a complicity in that evil and a tacit approval borne of a desire to be accepted by everyone but the One who died to save us. When truth equals hatred, everything becomes relative, nothing is sinful, our own truth becomes our guiding principal, and we might just as well be that rich man in Hades pleading with Abraham.
Speak the truth. Speak it in love. But remember that love does not necessarily require nice because sometimes truth is not nice. Truth often is a slap in the face to those who do not wish to hear it. Love demands that we speak the truth regardless of the consequence.
Truth is truth. It doesn’t waver and it doesn’t change. Only our sinful nature transforms truth into evil, love into complacency, and inaction into complicity.
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