“But speaking the truth (being sincere) in love”
Sincerity lies at the root of all gracious profession. If a man cannot be sincere he is nothing.
God makes a man sincere by planting His truth in his heart; and whenever God does make a man sincere, the truth which he has implanted will grow.
Truth does not lie in a man’s soul dead and motionless, like a stone in the street; it is a living, active, expansive principle. If the truth be in the soul it will be ever pushing out error, because the two principles cannot exist together; and as Isaac thrust out Ishmael, and Jacob proved stronger than Esau, so will simplicity and godly sincerity be ever mightier than craft and deception.
The truth of God in the heart will not wither and die, but will be shined upon by the smiles of God; and as truth becomes day by day more and more precious, so will error and evil become day by day more hateful. A sincere soul stands “girt about with truth”, and truth forms its shield and buckler.
He adds, therefore, “in love”. It is not enough to be “sincere” we must be “sincere in love”. Mark that. It is not receiving God’s truth as a certain orderly system; it is not furnishing our heads with a sound doctrinal creed and compact Calvinistic scheme which will avail us in the trying hour; but it is to have the truth of God brought into our soul by a divine power and realizing such unutterable sweetness in it as communicates a firm abiding love, both to the truth itself and to Him of whom it testifies and from whom it comes. It is through “speaking the truth in love” that we are made “sincere in love.”
By J.C. Philpot