By Joseph L. Watkins
Yes, the Word of Truth For Today, that is the Truth we seek today. Some years ago (June 1996, oh, how the time goes) we began this column under the title, The Word of Truth. It soon became subtitled, "Dividing the Word of Truth" as it became increasingly apparent that such a work was needed in many folks' lives. We now return to our original goal, "The Word of Truth For Today" - that distinctive, unique message out of God dispensed with this age and His eternal purpose in His view.
First, let me say, I must speak just as if we know what I am talking about, yet I do not think of myself as a teacher, but only as a full-time learner, for we hold in very high regard what "The Spirit of Truth" moved Paul to say unto Timothy, as he was to be a teacher of truth--
"...continue thou in the things which thou hast learned, and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them..."2 Tim. 3:14.
The man that holds himself up to being a teacher of Divine Truth is not even a good learner. For we have but One Divinely Authorized teacher today, that being the Lord Christ Jesus, in the form of the One Spirit of All Truth. He alone is teacher. Any that think otherwise just don't think.
And I also fully realize that our view of what should be accounted as Truth for Today may not agree with the views and understanding of other "learners" of dispensational truth, and I must agree to allow them to be wrong, if they so wish.
We shall offer for your consideration that which we see as Truth for Today in the coming months, even as He wills.
Dispensationally speaking, we will, and can only find Truth for Today, that is, truth out of God, given with this age in view in "8 parts" of the "66 parts" of His book. But at this point of our studies we are only concerned with the "7 chapters" that together make up "Paul's Book" and the gospel record of John the Beloved, being the Creator's life-bringing proclamation to all men, to every dying seed of Adam's race. Whereas, the seven post-Acts epistles of Paul are only addressed to, and are for, the Saints of God in Christ Jesus - those having ears to hear, and eyes to see, and hearts to believe.
And as a "Child of God in Christ Jesus" hears, reads and studies, and becomes a "faithing one" of His "truths for today" that one is chosen, or elected, of his Lord unto "His calling" unto His church, unto His body of which He is Head, even His "Heaven above Heavens."
If you are a Saint of God in Christ Jesus, and if you truly desire to have His Truth for this age, trust only that "One Teacher of His Truth" - even the Spirit of Truth for this age, for beyond any question, we do know that He already desires that you come unto the "knowledge of the truth." Our prayer is that Paul's prayer might become a living reality in your life-
"And this I pray, that your love (of the truth)may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment (discemment). That ye may approve (test) things that are excellent (differ); that ye may be sincere and with offence till (with a view to) the day of Christ." (= day of the new humanity today is the day of the old humanity). Phil. 1:9,10
"Ceasing not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you...THE SPIRIT OF WISDOM...and REVELATION in the Knowledge of Him." Eph. 1:16,17
"...praying for you, and desiring that you might be filled with KNOWLEDGE of His will (desire) in all WISDOM and SPIRITUAL UNDERSTANDING; Walk you worthily of the Lord...(with a view to) PLEASING HIM, in every good work, fruitful and growing (with a view to) the full KNOWLEDGE of the God." Col. 1:9,10
As I see it, these three epistles, along with the little letter of encouragement and love from Paul to his dear friend Philemon, was sent out from "his own hired house" at Rome by Paul about halfway through that two-year imprisonment. The fellow-workers he sent were Epaphroditus (Phil 2:25) at times called Epaphras (Col. 1:7; 4:12), and Tychicus (see Eph. 6:18-22; Col. 4:2-9.) He along with Onesimus, is now a servant of Christ Jesus as well as a slave of Paul's friend Philemon.
Tychicus is to go to Ephesus, Colosse, Laodicea, and perhaps other places as well (see Col. 4:7; Eph. 6:18-22). Epaphras, who had already been to Colosse, Ephesus and Philippi the first year of Paul's two-year imprisonment, is now again to return to those "otherwise-minded" folks at Philippi (see Phil. 2:19-30, 3:15).
Having returned to Paul with a mixed report as always of the faithing ones in Christ Jesus, and the unbelieving Saints in Christ Jesus.