Monday, March 3, 2014


By Ron Bartanen
     There are some things in life that are of such value that they are considered “priceless.”  They are things “money cannot buy.”  Once obtained, you would never want to part with them.  I enjoy watching “Antiques Road Show” on TV, especially the episodes in which individuals obtain items that others may have discarded in a junk-pile, or sold in a rummage sale, only to be told by antique dealers that what they found or purchased for next-to-nothing would be valued in multiple thousands of dollars.  While these items may not be considered by their owners to be exactly “priceless,” what was once considered by others as valueless are regarded by the beneficiaries as being of tremendous value.
     What price would you put upon love, friendship, health, happiness, etc.? Would you part with any of these at any price? Among the words of wisdom a father passed on to his son are those of Solomon: “Buy the truth, and sell it not” (Proverbs 3:23).  Surely no advice could be more practical than this.  What lessons can we obtain from these few words?
     Truth is priceless—obtain it at whatever the cost.  Though others may deem truth as indefinable, or even irrelevant, and therefore of little value, the seeker for truth seeks what is beyond price.  The true scientist will not allow himself to be blinded by popular scientific theories or by political pressure, but will devote his life to the pursuit of scientific, provable truth.  The founders of our nation have sought to establish a peaceful society on the basis of truth.   Patriots have shed their blood to defend the truth. Martyrs have chosen to perish rather than renounce the truth.  Truth is life’s most valuable asset.  Seek it at whatever the cost.
     Truth is priceless—sell it not.  Scientists may sell the truth for acceptance in scientific and political circles.  Politicians may sell the truth for votes.  Preachers may sell the truth for popularity.  Let us not be as Esau who sold his birthright to his brother Jacob through indifference.  Some, in possession of the truth, have “changed the truth of God into a lie” (Romans 1:25a).  Some, lured by the enticements of the world, have sacrificed godly ethical and moral truth through willful sin, even seeking to redefine truth that it may comply with popular culture.  Some would abandon truth when truth becomes unpopular, preferring the comfort of accepted traditions.  Paul prophesied of those who would “not endure sound doctrine,” but would “turn away their ears from the truth, and would be turned unto fables” (2 Timothy 4:3-4).
     Truth is the foundation for liberty.  Jesus said, “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32).  Free nations will be those that respect God’s truth as revealed in His word.  Tyrants rule where truth is no longer held in honor.  Individuals freed from the bondage of sin are those who obey God’s truth—His word.  Jesus prayed for the disciples, “Sanctify them by Your truth; Your word is truth” (John 17:17).  He revealed Himself as the standard of truth, saying, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).  In the world it is easy to substitute religion for truth.  Absolute truth is a rare commodity in today’s society, with many substitutes.  The devil’s lies,deceptively presented by him as truths, are more appealing to the carnal mind.  The indolent will satisfy themselves with whatever is popular, while truth-seekers will “buy the truth and sell it not.”
- Ronald Bartanen preaches for Arthur Church of Christ, Arthur, IL.  He may be contacted through the congregation's website:


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