“What is the Truth?”
It was in the movie “The Passion of the Christ”. A small line delivered by Pilate, but those few words can fill pages in people’s minds: “What is the Truth?” Now don’t stop reading after the question is presented just because it sounds too cerebral. The answer I pose is not all that painful. In fact, this letter is not a dissertation on truth that weaves through the philosophical on some winding journey to the spiritual. Actually, it’s a pretty simple answer I’m suggesting. Jesus approached it in John 14: 6, “I am the way, the truth and the life… “. Jesus called himself the Truth. He has been called the Good Shepherd, Savior, Lord, the Bread of Life, Prince of Peace, King of Kings, Light of the World. Each title will bring a certain peace to each of us simply by knowing him as any one of that list.
But what is Truth? Is it a bunch of mysteries solved or maybe riddles to which we find the solution? If we memorize the Book of Proverbs, maybe that’s all the truth we need. But what he was talking about, Truth as described by Jesus, is the full uncovering of God. It is what is real about the Father. Some things may be true but it may not be “the Truth”. Everything else exists in “moments”. However, “The Truth” is eternal and never changes. Truth was before there was anything and it will exist after everything has faded away. Jesus came to reveal reality and to take away misunderstanding, error, and distortions about God. Before Jesus, God was revealed in part and after Jesus, He was revealed in His fullest. The fact is the only way to know God is to know the Son who is the revealed Truth of God.
We’re playing a song form Casting Crowns called “Who Am I?” That’s a fair question to ask. Moses asked it first after God came to him during Moses’ “forced retirement”. And, while it’s a fair question, I think the more important question is “Who are You? Knowing who God is reveals who I am. I can’t get a clue who I am, or who my neighbor is, without a true revealing of the knowledge of who God is. Pilate had a great Empire, had things, had power, but had no life. Just as in the movie, the face of Pilate was empty and questioning as he posed his question of Truth. Not having the correct answer to the question, they crucified the Truth because they hated the Truth. Isaiah 59:14 says, “Truth has stumbled in the street”. Truth was mugged and nailed to a Cross.
Paul taught that Christ spoke “words of Truth”. Before Christ, we had a distorted truth. It was a truth like Adam’s truth. Adam ran and hid from God. He thought God hated him for missing the mark. Adam, aware of his sin, was afraid of God. However, the revealed Truth, the Reality, is that God loved Adam. After the fall, God was not seeking Adam to condemn him but to “father” him. Obviously, an all-knowing God knew exactly where Adam was hiding. God was asking a rhetorical question when He asked “Adam where are you!” God needed Adam to know, to realize, where Adam was at in his thinking about God. Just like Adam, you thought God hated you because you missed the mark. You were afraid of God. However, when Christ revealed God’s love and uncovered the true God, the God of Mercy and Grace, Love cast out all fear. That Truth has not only the power to set us free, but if received it has the guarantee to make us free.
We know what happens when men suppress the Truth. It’s described in Paul’s writings to the Romans: “…they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the Glory of the un-corruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds and four footed beasts and creeping things. Wherefore, God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the Truth of God into a lie and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator…” or simply: “wrong worship”!
We recently sponsored a contemporary worship event with Axiom. Contemporary worship and “classic” worship, if true worship, is generated out of the knowledge of our liberty in Christ. Thousands of years ago, David’s praise was generated out of the “discovery” that God forgives our transgressions and blesses our life with undeserved blessings (Psalm 32). That same understanding today, the knowing of a freedom that makes us free, leads us into “all Truth”. That Truth leads us into Worship. Then we can Worship in Spirit and in Truth. Spirit and Truth must join hands in order to enter into true Worship. Until the Truth is revealed in Christ to us, we cannot Worship. The Truth of God’s Love leads us into Worship as a response. The Father Loves you because of Who He is, not because of who you are. Coming to know who you are apart from God simply reveals the flesh patterns that you were born with. It leaves us with no revelation of God and no power to overcome the strongholds built into our lives. Truth however, empowers us to overcome.
What is Truth? Jesus is the answer to Pilate’s question. Truth stood right in front of Pilate and he couldn’t see it. People want more of an answer than the one that Jesus gave. Pilate wanted a philosophical answer. Some times we want a “deeper, spiritual” answer. Surely it must be more complicated than that.
Once we knew “what is Truth” or better stated “Who is Truth”, we can then understand who we are: We are children of God, we’re redeemed, forgiven, saved, we’re justified, and sanctified, we’re new creatures, we partake of His Divine Nature, we’re delivered, we are led by the Spirit, we are sons of God, we are kept by His Love, we’re getting needs met by the Spirit, we’re strong in the Lord, we can do all things declared in God’s Word by His Word, we are heirs of Blessing, we are subjected to His healings, we have authority in His Name, we can be Conquerors, we have an overcoming Faith, we’re not moved by what we see or feel, we cast down vain imaginations, we take thought captive to the Word, we’re being transformed by the renewing of our minds through Christ, we labor with God, we are Righteous in His sight, we are being changed into His image, we are graced to be in His presence. All those things must be true because Truth declared them and paid the price for them. Truth is not something to be discovered or uncovered. Truth is revealed in Jesus. Truth is not something; it’s Someone!