What is Truth?
‘And what is truth’ Pilate asked.
That must surely be one of the more ironic lines in Scripture.
Staring at Jesus - one of His names is The Truth and asking ‘What is Truth?’
It’s a question that is appropriate for the times we live in.
I want to say 3 things about Truth today – things that I hope will set us free in some new way…. to live in a new way as a disciple of Jesus.
Truth is: a thing
What do I mean, truth is a thing – well truth is the opposite of lies, of deception, of things that we keep hidden. Truth is a thing which is always in the open and is never scared of, or ashamed of, being revealed.
The world today is full of the opposite of truth – in the business world, the political arena and the sporting world the opposite of truth is called corruption, fraud, nepotism, mismanagement, etc.
And we need look no further than our own country to the scandals in athletics, cricket and in various government departments where rampant fraud has been exposed, to realize that there is, in many areas, an absence of the thing called truth.
And the good thing is that it is being exposed.
On every continent throughout the world, similar exposure is taking place on an unprecedented scale. The current recession is due to TRUTH being exposed.
This exposure of corruption is a new thing taking place in our lifetime and it has considerable prophetic significance. We will misunderstand its significance if we simply conclude that we live in the most evil generation ever to have inhabited the world. This may be true, but no one has evidence to prove it.
There has always been corruption, unrighteousness, cruelty and wickedness ever since Adam and Eve left the Garden of Eden. It was precisely to deal with this that the Father sent Jesus with the good news of God’s saving love.
The new thing we are seeing today is the extent of what is being revealed. Nothing remains hidden.
What is happening today is fully in line with a prophecy given by none other than Jesus himself. He said ‘there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open (Luke 8:17)’.
Jesus was speaking about the effect the gospel would have upon the world. He said it would be like lighting a lamp and putting it on a prominent place in the room so that everyone could see the light which would also expose everything in the room.
This is precisely what is happening today. Nothing remains hidden for long.
God is undoubtedly turning up the power of the light that is exposing evil and corruption, but that same light is also bringing life to millions who are hearing the good news of the Lord Jesus for the first time. These are the contrasts of the age in which we live. But these are also the signs of the times for which we should be watching and noting if we are to understand what God is saying to His people today and what He is requiring us to do.
So truth is a thing, which because of the light of the gospel, will be and is being revealed.
That same gospel of course touches us and changes us and this leads to the second thing I want to say about truth, and that is that truth is a power, it has potential.
John reminds us (8:32) that The truth shall set you free.
Wherever the opposite of truth exists, be it in the form of lies or deception or fraud or corruption, there is un-freedom, there is bondage, there is watching what I do, or say or spend.
You might disagree, but what I’m saying is that, as an example from current news, General Petraeus is a freer man today than he was before the truth was brought out into the open.
King David in the Bible was a freer man after his sin was exposed.
The opposite of truth enslaves and is a constant threat to our physical, emotional, and spiritual well being. This is especially true in the relationships we have with the people we love. Husbands and wives, be truthful with each other about what you like and don’t like. Parents and children (of all ages), brothers and sisters, friends, be truthful with each other.
I counsel too many people who say – ‘I didn’t know he/she felt that way’….. ‘He never said anything’
Friends “the truth sets you free”
Don’t believe Satan’s deception that you cannot be truthful with the people you love…….you can, they (and you) will survive.
The gospel, which is the good news for our salvation, says “the truth will always set you free.”
I have counseled many people into the courageous steps of revealing the truth about themselves to the people they love……….. and sometimes it has almost been with great fear (how will he/she respond) but ALWAYS the discovery has been that the truth sets free.
Now this doesn’t mean that on your way home, or even in the pew right now, you turn to the person you love and say:
Actually I’m married to somebody else… Oh by the way I have a child in France… And while we’re at it I can’t stand your hair today… And you look terrible in blue….
That might have an unnecessarily unexpected and unpleasant immediate outcome…….. but,do as you sit here or drive home, decide that the time is near for the truth to come out, because the truth will set you free.
And it will set you free because the truth is not just a thing that will be revealed, and it is not just a power that will set you free, it gets even better than these two good things,………….. the truth is also a person.
Jesus said: I am the Truth (that’s why it is so ironic that Pilate should look at Him and say what is truth)
And Jesus is revealed in us, His image is restored in us, His spirit is upon us and in us when the truth is in us and in our relationships. Does that make sense?
When you are truthful, Jesus is revealed in you.
What is truth? Pilate asks.
Jesus in His life and in His gospel reveals that:
1. Truth is a thing which will be revealed
2. Truth is a power which always sets free
3. Truth is a person, Christ, who wants to be revealed in you and me.