Vol.VIII No.II Pg.3
April 1971

Buying Truth

Dan S. Shipley

Buy the truth, and sell it not; Yea, wisdom, and instruction, and under- standing. (Prov. 23:23) Gods truth is treasure of immeasurable value. It alone anticipates and provides for mans every spiritual need because it, as man, has come from God Himself. Only this truth shows man how to be freed from sin and how to serve God. By it comes faith, unity of the Spirit and sanctification. It is the only adequate defense against Satan. This truth is the second-most precious thing to come from the Father.

However, to accomplish its Divine purpose, truth must he appropriated into the lives of individuals. This is what our text calls buying. The price of truth is that which it requires of those who would embrace it. As with most truly precious things, truth cannot be bought with money. Those who would buy it must pay for it in the coin of learning, belief, and obedience.

Truth must be known to be owned: learned to be earned. God endowed man with both mind and truth but has left it to man to get truth into his mind — and this is achieved only at the price of mental industry. Such learning leads to Christ: Every one that hath heard from the Father, and hath learned, cometh unto me (Jn. 6:45). The blessings of truth are many and great, but every one of them is predicated upon its being known. Needless spiritual poverty abounds because so many are unwilling to pay the price of learning in order to acquire truth. My people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge... (Hos. 4:6) But, neither can one claim truth as his who does not believe it. Knowledge is not faith; knowing truth is not the same as believing it. Rather, knowledge is to faith as cause is to effect (Rom. 10:17). These things are written that ye might believe (Jn. 20:31). Saving faith is unfaltering trust in God and His Son founded on a firm conviction of His truth. Apart from this truth there is no faith: there is nothing of faith, claims to the contrary not withstanding. The excellence of genuine faith lies in WHAT is believed. If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater. (1 Jn. 5:9)

Finally, truth is owned through obedience. At this point, much alleged faith proves counterfeit. Many say Lord, Lord but refuse to pay the price of doing His will (truth): hence waive its purchase. Contrary to the popular and contradictory concept which urges all men to do their own thing in their own way, God is only served in the doing of His will. There is much doing that is not serving in truth (Josh. 24:14; 1 Sam. 12:24; Matt. 7:21). Only wrath and indignation await those who obey not His truth (Rom. 2:8).

This precious truth is available only in the market place of the Bible. Those who would buy it must pay the price individually and on the lifetime installment plan. Faithfulness means meeting all installments coming due on truth — even unto death.

This truth IS the pearl of great price — a bargain at any price! Buy it and sell it not.