The Twofoldness of Divine Truth

Revelation 21:1-2a says, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth….And I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God.” God revealed and John saw New Jerusalem as a finished product.

The title of this blog is the title of a booklet* by Robert Govett, a Christian who lived in England 1813 to 1901. I mentioned this booklet in one prior post. The particular twofoldness of truth addressed in my recent posts ( ) is that on one hand New Jerusalem has been completed and on the other hand we are participating every day in God’s New Testament building by growth in life (Eph. 2:21-22; 4:16; 1 Peter 2:2-5).

Brother Govett uses some specific examples of “seemingly opposing truths” in the Word of God, but his conclusions are not limited to those examples. Here are some quotes in regard to “seemingly opposing truths.”
• Which are we to believe of the two statements? Both! The same God who spoke one spoke the other also. It is enough that the Word of God distinctly affirms both.
• Both are to be received whether we can reconcile them or no. Their claim on our reception is not that we can unite them, but that God has testified both.
• God is one, and His Word is one, though its beauty and its glory is that it views truth on all sides.

He likens the two sides of divine truth to the two reins of a horse and urges us, Do not always pull at one of them, lest you land yourself and your horse in the ditch. He concludes by praying that the Lord will give us the teaching of the Holy Spirit so that each part of His Word may leave its due impression on us. Therefore, based on the words of the Bible, we praise the Triune God that we are already in New Jerusalem and at the same time we consecrate ourselves to His current building work in us.

* The copy I have is published by Christian Publications Inc., Harrisburg PA and is undated.

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  1. In my copy of “Twofoldness” I have a note paraphrasing Andrew Murray speaking about Paul (I looked for the original in some books but could not find it). The paraphrase: Paul spoke on one extreme in one place and on the other extreme in another place. He was not a man to compromise halfway between extremes; he stood firmly on both extremes at the same time.

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  2. This is probably my favorite spiritual essay. A Jew once made a comment to me, “I find that Christians tend to believe a lot of contradicting things at the same time. And they’re okay with that.”

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    • Both Govett and another writer comment that Jews are so enamored with the prophecies concerning the greatness and glory of Christ that they ignore the prophecies concerning His humility and sufferings. Yet the prophets spoke “of the sufferings of Christ and the glories after these.” (1 Pet. 1:10-11) May we give attention to every side revealed in God’s word of truth.

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      • Right! Amen. And your post helped me appreciate standing at both extremes at the same time. The twofoldness of the truth is not a compromise. I didn’t see that so clearly before.

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