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The late Paul Harvey of ABC News once told a story on his broadcast of a lawyer who was in the process of qualifying a jury. He asked the candidates if any of them didn’t like lawyers. None of the potential jurors answered. However, the judge spoke up and said, "I don’t!".If indeed there were ever a reason to dislike lawyers, it would be for the cause that they seem interested in defending their client more so, then simply pursuing discovery of the real truth; at least, that’s the impression one might get from watching courtroom drama on television.
While I’d even hesitate to stereo-type every lawyer under this heading, we may still learn from this illustration that it is certainly more honorable to pursue the truth than one’s own agenda. At Luke chapter ten, a lawyer came to the Lord beginning at verse twenty five and, calling Him Master, asked him what he could do to inherit eternal life. The ancients used the name "Master" to denote "teacher".
It’s doubtful this lawyer respected the Lord as his teacher, for the passage reveals that he asked the question not to discover the truth, but in an effort to tempt the Lord. It appears, then, that this lawyer became guilty of a great hypocrisy to call the Lord "Master" while having no genuine interest in the truth. It’s hardly unusual, though, for folks to use flattering words to describe the Lord while they, in fact, pursue their own version of doctrine and religion which may differ from that revealed in scripture.
At Matthew chapter fifteen, Jesus began at verse eight to talk about those that would draw nigh unto Him with the mouth, and honor Him with their lips, though their heart was far from Him. The worship of these was vain, for they taught as doctrines the commandments of men. And,’ though they worship in vain, in the process of doing so they speak words and execute deeds which they intend to honor the Lord.
The heart, though, will still be miles away from the Lord until one resigns himself to peruse the truth as the Lord reveals it to be, not what one wants the truth to be, nor what he may have previously conceived it to be. In the case of that lawyer of Luke ten, Jesus answered the lawyer’s questions by telling what we now call the "Parable of the Good Samaritan" after which He in turn essentially asked the lawyer to confess the truth related in the story. The lawyer was obliged to do so.
Though there be many who verbally honor the Lord, many of these are still far from Him because of denial of truth. Eventually, the truth will be forced upon those who never accepted it in life. The lawyer pursued his own agenda but soon discovered the truth could not forever be denied. An honest heart applied to scripture can tell the difference.