Bushido, Veracity, and Jesus


This is part 3 in a series on Bushido and Jesus.

Samurai prided themselves on the guarantee that their words held. Unlike the merchants who engaged in commerce and prospered through dishonesty, the mark of a true samurai was that his words were true and did not need any additional sign of proof. It was considered dishonorable for one to ask the samurai for a written guarantee of what they had said. If they said they would do something, they would do it. And if they said something was true, it was true. The greatest samurai spoke the truth even when it would mean the loss of property or life.[1]

Jesus never lied. This is what made the Jews want to kill him so badly. He spoke what his Father had told him to speak, namely that he was God. He was repeatedly questioned for the claims that he made, such as when he claimed that he was from heaven and the Jews said, “’Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he now say, ‘I have come down from heaven.?’”[2] Like a true samurai Jesus was dishonored by the Jews’ constant demands to prove his claims.

Near the time of his death “the Jews gathered around him and said to him, ‘How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.’ Jesus answered them, ‘I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me…”[3] His own disciples also dishonored him by doubting his words. He appealed to his works as evidence that he spoke the truth when he said to one of his disciples, “Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves.”[4]

The final and most deadly confession of truth Jesus made was before the Jewish elders who had arrested him. They were seeking to kill him on the grounds that he had falsely claimed to be the Son of God. It was his veracity and commitment to always speaking the truth that got him killed. Luke 22:70-71 says: “So they all said, ‘Are you the Son of God, then?’ And he said to them, ‘You say that I am.’ Then they said, ‘What further testimony do we need? We have heard it ourselves from his own lips.’” This last confession sealed Jesus’ fate and led to his death.

Jesus is the perfection of veracity because he never lied and the truth that he spoke cost him more than any words another man has spoken. Though he was accused of being a liar, Jesus was raised from the dead by God to show that he was perfect and true. If he had indeed lied about being the Son of God he would have stayed dead as all others, but he was raised by the Father to show that his words had all been true and he was truly God. No other man has made as strong claims as Jesus, and no man has ever been vindicated for such bold claims except for Jesus. He is the truest man who has ever lived because he is God.

[1] Nitobe, 35-38.

[2] John 6:42

[3] John 10:25

[4] John 14:10-11

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s