Internal Conflict. A state of being with more meaning for a man of imperfect nature. Yet in battle with an external force of borrowed legitimacy.
And in this life-long fight, to be waged by every one of us single-handed against a host of foes, the last armament for a good fight, the last proof and test of our courage and manfulness, must be loyalty to truth.
This is the most rare and difficult of all human qualities.
For when the truth is spoken it has been wielded as a weapon of destruction. Tearing down kingdoms and strongholds built on false doctrine and desires of foolishness.
Loyalty to truth, perfected over a lifetime, asks increasingly more of us. It sets before us a standard of manliness always rising higher and higher. Though the nature of men is of decreasing courage in the face of opposition.
And this is the great lesson which we will learn from Christ’s life, the more earnestly and faithfully we study it.
“For this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, to bear witness to the truth.”
To bear this witness against declared and open enemies is comparatively easy; but, to bear it against those we love; against those whose judgment and opinions we respect, in defense or advancement of that which approves itself as true to our own inmost conscience, this is the last and abiding test of courage and of manliness.
Copyright 2020, Johnathan Sexton
Adapted from True Manliness, Thomas Hughes