In principle, what is the difference between a proverb of Solomon that says, “As snow in summer and rain in harvest, so honor is not fitting for a fool (Prov 26:1), and a quote of Mark Twain who is quoted as saying, “It is better to deserve honors and not have them, than to have them and not deserve them.”?
That question has been rattling around in my head as I’ve been weighing what seems to be the right and wrong way to conclude that “all truth is God’s truth.”
A teacher I know says, “Something is not true because it’s in the Bible; it is in the Bible because it is true.” His statement recognizes that there is a world of truth that can be quoted by people like Mark Twain… while recognizing that the Bible has a special purpose in defining the origin, characteristics, and goal of truth.
For example, seems to me that the Devil could probably fascinate us with truth, until the day we die. But he would do so, out of context, in a way that did not honor the Source of all truth, and in a manner that did not bring us to the Mediator who alone can help us resolve the problem of the lies we have believed about God, ourselves, and others.
In the process “the Father of lies” would alter the use of truth, and the reason we have been given the capacity for knowledge and understanding that resonates with the reality and character of our God.
Could this be one of many reasons that an inspired Bible (and its God-given boundaries) are so important? Could it also help explain why Solomon seems to have been honoring in his proverbs the kind of truth that can be used to build bridges or barricades to knowing the one true God?
In other words, do you think we’re on the right track to observe that Proverbs 26:1 and the above quoted words of Mark Twain are saying the same thing in principle, but that the purpose of the two can be worlds and eternities apart?