There is an old saying that “truth is the first casualty of war.” That may be true in our 24-hour drive-by news cycle of today. But God’s Word points out to us that it has always been true. In spiritual battle, as well as in earthly combat, truth is quickly relegated to the infirmary.
In my personal devotion times lately I have been hanging out in Daniel. The first few chapters are pretty straightforward and understandable. They are the famous stories; Daniel and his friends not eating at the kings table, Daniel interpreting dreams for the king and Daniel in the lion’s den. The last few chapters are much more intense. They involve visions, symbolism and prophecy.
I have no desire to expound of what they meant in Daniel’s time or what they may mean for us today. Instead I want to point out a simple fact: pride kills truth.
In Daniel 8 there is a vision of rebellion and war. There is the destruction of kingdoms and kings. At the very end of the chapter Daniel himself falls ill because of the heavy nature of the vision. But today, one small verse caught my eye.
“Because of rebellion, the host of the saints and the daily sacrifice were given over to it. It prospered in everything it did and truth was thrown to the ground.” Daniel 8:12
Truth became a casualty of this rebellion. In so many ways, we become prideful and rebellious in our walk with God and truth gets thrown to the ground. When we think that we have a right or special access to God because of our position or our success, we are the leaders of rebellion. And when we believe that what God has done would not have been possible without us, we buy into the lie. Truth gets thrown to the ground.
The past week has seen a man of God who was being used by God in a powerful way fall in the battle. I don’t know this man personally, and I have no idea about the depth of his sin or the struggles he is facing. But for all of us who may want to throw stones or cast judgments or think we are above such things, we are throwing truth to the ground.
Some may argue my interpretation or exegesis of the passage. I am simply sharing what God showed me today from his word: I can kill truth very quickly if I am not careful. When I get arrogant and judgmental, when I get lazy or casual, when I get frustrated and tempted, I am on the edge of body slamming the truth. I need to remember that all that is good in me is the result of all the good Jesus has done.
What are the areas that you need to pick up truth? Where are you buying into the lie of rebellion?