John 18:38a ““What is truth?” Pilate asked.”
We all make decisions every day and those decisions are based on what we believe to be true. Although we all have a file of “truths” tucked away someplace, ready for referencing when needed, just how much time do we spend really verifying how true our truths are? After all, when we make choices based on “our truth” there can be consequences if we are wrong. While we may have the liberty to choose any road we want, we don’t get to decide where the road goes. We can believe it leads to one place but the truth may be far different. Differences in our preferences are not differences in truth. Truth is an absolute commodity. If I say Nike is better than Under Armour, you can disagree with “my truth” with little consequence. But if you disagree with me on…say…gravity, I just hope you don’t attempt to prove me wrong! Before we accept something as true, we have to research it, we must do a background check on truth. We must first decide who or what has the credentials, the credibility to be accepted as truth. Is there an authority or source that is wholly reliable for truth? If you’re a believer – the answer is yes.
Pray: “Father God, the world is quick to choose its own truths, the ones that suit their tastes and needs. But I know there is a real truth…one that surpasses and supplants all others. In Jesus’ holy name, thank you, Father, for leading me in Your truth – Amen.
2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”
For the follower of Jesus, God is the source of all truth and that truth is found in the Word that He gifted us with. Since God is the creator of all that is, He is the only authoritative source on any subject regarding his creation. Since we are not omnipotent (all-knowing) as He is, He gave us His truth in the scriptures that men wrote as they were led by the Holy Spirit. When mankind chooses to ignore scripture and follow their own truth, it will always ultimately fail. Truth never fails and so it is the only thing on which to base our lives. It teaches us right from wrong, it helps us to make wise decisions, and it prepares us for the work God intends for us. How we see God determines how much truth we attribute to His word. If He alone is our authority, then His scripture can be fully trusted in all ways. The problem is, though we say we trust scripture, we often find ourselves at odds with what it says. We fear though it says “I have not given you a spirit of fear”. We worry though it says “Be anxious for nothing”. Do you really believe what you claim to believe?
Pray: “Holy Lord, I know I can put my trust in You. In spite of that, I often find myself acting at odds with what Your Word tells me. In my Savior’s mighty name, forgive me when my actions don’t line up with my beliefs and in those times…help my unbelief – Amen.”
Philippians 4:8a-b “And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable.”
One of the reasons our truths aren’t always true is because we typically do not spend a great deal of time thinking about what we consider as true. In today’s society, information overload is available at our fingertips 24/7. But even though “It’s true because I saw it on TV” has now given way to “It’s true because I read it on the internet”, do we seriously consider who these “experts” are that we follow? The world has always challenged the truth of God’s word. But what happens when what we have accepted as truth contradicts God’s word? How you respond reveals who your source of truth is. If God’s word is true, then when our truth contradicts it, there is no debate on what must happen. When we condemn ourselves for past mistakes and God’s word says “There is therefore now no condemnation for them who are in Christ Jesus” do you continue to condemn yourself? If so, you elevate yourself and make God’s word of no account. Sometimes we do it because it is more natural for us. That is why we must train ourselves to “fix our thoughts” – because it doesn’t come natural. So what do we “fix” it on? What is true…the Word.
Pray: “Dear Lord, if I am to fix my thoughts on truth, I must fill myself with Your Word. Your Word, unlike worldly knowledge and wisdom, requires no vetting. In Jesus’ holy name, let me challenge every word that comes from the world but place nothing higher than Your truth…Your Word– Amen.”
John 14:6a “Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.”
Jesus said He is “the truth”. Jesus is the Word made flesh. God revealed His truth and then showed it to us in the person of Jesus. Jesus said the very words He spoke were not his own but came from the Father (John 12:49). The famous theologian Augustine once said “If you believe what you like in the gospels and reject what you don’t like, it’s not the gospel you believe, but yourself.” If what Jesus spoke was truth, then it is all truth. You don’t get to pick and choose. The Bible calls those who know the truth and choose not to follow it – fools. But what about when we hunt and peck for scriptures that make us feel better or back up our life choices? Are we speaking into the scriptures or are we allowing scripture to speak into us? In the former, we are the authority…in the latter, God is. Once upon a time a man thought to question God’s authority. The man, Job, received a lengthy response from God that left no doubt as to the insignificance of man to even ponder the questions God can easily answer. Jesus has made the way clear. Only a fool chooses their own way.
Pray: “Heavenly Father, when Jesus said He was the truth, that left us with no need to look any further. I have been a fool in the past for thinking that my way was another way. In Jesus’ name, I confess there is only one way and so I will be a fool no longer. Let Your way be my way I humbly pray – Amen
Matthew 4:4a “But Jesus told him, “No! The Scriptures say”
Matthew 4:7a “Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say”
Matthew 4:10a “For the Scriptures say”
When Satan thought he had Jesus at a disadvantage (after 40 days and nights of fasting) he appeared in the desert to challenge Him. Even in His weakened condition, Jesus knew there was only one way to respond to temptation: “The scriptures say” or “It is written”. In the end, the devil fled defeated to wait for another time. The devil is the father of lies, taking a little truth and twisting it until it says something it never said. Even in Jesus’ wilderness trial, Satan quoted scripture (out of context, of course) to try and trick Jesus. But Jesus knew the Word. Today, the Word of God is still the best way to defeat the devil in his traps and temptations. But unless we know the Word, how will we be able to identify truth from error? Scripture says in the last days there will be false teachers. We must study, then, to show ourselves approved – rightly dividing the Word of truth (2 Tim 2:15). We must remember that the truth cannot be broken. We, on the other hand, can be broken on the truth. Let us, then, learn the lesson of the wilderness: man does not live on bread alone but on every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
Pray: “Heavenly Father, Your Son showed us that no lie can stand before Your truth. If the Word was good enough for Him to defeat Satan, then it will be the sword I wield as well. In my Savior’s matchless name, teach me to fight with Your Word I pray – Amen.”