The Truth

I am the truth.
— John 14:6

The man is a true man who chooses duty; he is a perfect man who at length never thinks of duty, who forgets the name of it. The duty of Jesus was the doing in lower forms than the perfect that which he loved perfectly, and did perfectly in the highest forms also. Thus he fulfilled all righteousness. One who went to the truth by mere impulse, would be a holy animal, not a true man. Relations, truths, duties, are shown to the man away beyond him, that he many choose them, and be a child of God, choosing righteousness like him. The moral philosopher who regards duties only as facts of his system; even the man who rewards them as truths, essential realities of his humanity, but goes no farther, is essentially a liar, a man of untruth. He is a man in possibility, but not a real man yet. The recognition of these things is the imperative obligation to fulfill them. Not fulfilling these relations, the man is undoing the right of his own existence, destroying his raison d’etre, making of himself a monster, a live reason why he should not live, for nothing on those terms could ever have begun to be. His presence is a claim upon his creator for destruction. The facts of human relation, then, are truths indeed, and of most awful import. “Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer; and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him!” The man who lives a hunter after pleasure, not a laborer in the fields of duty, is in himself a lie. Hence all the holy—that is, healing—miseries that come upon him; they are for the compelling of the truth he will not yield—a painful suasion to be himself, to be a truth.