Let our lives lovingly express truth in all things, speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly. Enfolded in love, let us grow up in every way and in all things into Him. (Ephesians AMP)
Any system of religion that just puts on from the outside, and covers over the inner life by mere rite and ritual is false, it is not true. The work of God is to reconstitute human nature. And that, of course, involves two things. On the one side, it involves a breaking down. And if you know anything about God's dealings with lives who come into His hands, there is undoubtedly a large place for that – a progressive breaking down; a getting to the root of things, and undeceiving us. If we have any illusions about ourselves, they will all be gone when God has done with us. If we are governed by any kind of falsehood about ourselves, and our position, and our work, when God has done with us, that will all be gone. He is going to break us down until we see ourselves stark, as an unclean thing, with all our righteousnesses as filthy rags. So He will break us down, and He does.
But there is the other side, of course, all the time, for God is not only, and always negative; there is the constructing, bringing up to the place where anything that is false, anything that is not absolutely transparent and true, straight, clear, is hateful to us. More and more our inner man revolts against our own falsehood. Any exaggerations come back on us at once with conviction of wrong; any false statement hits us hard, and we know that we have not spoken the truth. It is a tremendous thing to get into the hands of the Holy Spirit, until, like God, the one thing that we hate is anything that is false. "I hate", said David, "every false way." We must come there. But we must be lovers of the truth. And this is going to pursue us everywhere; it will pursue us into our own life within ourselves, that we are not deceiving ourselves at all. Before God we know exactly what God thinks about us, and we know where we stand in the light.... And the nearer we come to the Lord, the more meticulous the Holy Spirit is over this matter of truth; the closer are His dealings with us. It is very true, you see, "perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord" – perfecting. The nearer we get to the end, the more stringent will be the Lord's dealings with anything false in our lives. It is a time matter, but God is very faithful – He is very faithful; He does not let things pass. Do we want Him to be faithful? Well, it is not comfortable to say, "Yes," but it is good that He should be faithful with every inconsistency, every contradiction, every falsehood, in the inward parts.