What is truth? Why is it important that we as Christians have a biblical understanding of it?
To pursue truth is the single most important thing anyone can do in their entire lives. When we wholeheartedly seek it out it will be found.
The world has turned truth into nothing more than just an opinion. Relative to the person and situation, the truth is no longer an absolute but merely a perspective or position one can hold.
The problem with this is that whether or not we believe in truth does not dictate the existence of truth itself. But when we believe, it is the power of God unto salvation because truth brings freedom.
In John chapter 8 we see the Pharisees trying to trap Jesus in his words in order to accuse him. It starts when they bring him the woman who was caught in adultery who was going to be stoned to death. Jesus tells them that whoever is without sin can cast the first stone and the Pharisees go away one at a time. Not a single stone was cast.
Jesus flips the script on them and they walk away convicted. He was starting to have some breakthrough and he saw it. As he continues to make Himself known they keep on questioning Him until it reaches a point where they simply say “who are you?”
At this, he tells them,
“When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him.” Even as he spoke, many believed in him.” John 8:28-30
Even as He spoke many believed in Him. He saw that they were starting to believe so he said to the Jews who had believed Him, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32
They tell Him they have never been slaves and ask how he can set them free. This makes me think of modern America and our freedom we have here. Our freedom is a blessing but its also a huge responsibility.
The answer Jesus gives the Jews is one that we also need to reflect on. He replies with,“Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:34-36
The bible says that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. We have all either been enslaved or are currently enslaved to our sin. This bondage brings with it, anxiety, depression, fear, doubt, shame… the list goes on.
But the good news is there is freedom from sin and all of the darkness that accompanies it. Freedom is found in truth.
Truth Revealed Through The Word
“If you hold to my teaching you are really my disciples…” The word for word translation of this verse uses the word “continue”. Jesus is saying if we stand firm in the word not being swayed or shaken no matter the place, circumstance or situation.
This reminds me of James chapter 1 where it says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” We need to become doers of the word not just hearers.
The verse continues with, “Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.” James 1:23-24
If we want to become redefined by truth and find freedom from our sin we need to stop deceiving ourselves. We can’t go to church each Sunday, hear the word, see ourselves as redefined, transformed, renewed, free, and then walk out the doors and immediately forget what we looked like.
That’s deception and the only person we are fooling is ourselves.
This scripture from John chapter 8 is close to my heart because it is the main scripture for the website. We use the English Standard Version which says, “ If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples,”
I just love this word “abide” especially here. If we live in his word and truly make it our home, that’s when we become true disciples!
Jesus said in Luke Chapter 9, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.” Luke 9:23-24
Being a disciple is all about denying who the world has redefined us as and become redefined by abiding in the word of God!
It’s time we let go of the world and grabbed ahold of His teaching! When we do this not only do we find the truth but truth becomes known!
Truth Becomes Known
“Then you will know the truth…”
The original Greek word used here for “know” is ginōskō. This is an intimate way of knowing someone. We see this same word used in Matthew chapter 1.
“When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.” Matthew 1:24-25 ESV
If what is being said here is unclear to you the NIV says, “But he did not consummate their marriage until she gave birth to a son.”
This is why redefining truth by the word of God is so critically important. The world has turned truth into nothing more than an opinion. So how do we intimately know an opinion? We can’t!
Jesus gives us a clear definition of truth in John chapter 14.“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life.” John 14:6
Truth can be intimately known through knowing Jesus Christ!
As we turn from sin to Jesus, our Lord and Savior, we receive the Holy Spirit, the spirit of truth! Who leads us and guides us into all the truth. This enables us to abide in His word and hold to the teaching.
Not only then do we intimately know the truth, but the truth lives in us and as a result, we live by truth!
Truth Brings Freedom
“and the truth will set you free.”
This intimate relationship with truth liberates us from our sin! This goes back to the scripture we looked at earlier, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36
Jesus Christ, the absolute living truth sets us free indeed! The original Greek word for indeed here(ontōs) means, truly, in reality, in point of fact, as opposed to what is pretended, fictitious, false, or conjectural.
Conjecture means to form an opinion upon false information. This is the freedom we seek out in the world, freedom based upon false information, and it leaves us empty and in bondage to sin.
But if the son sets us free, if the word sets us free, if the truth sets us free, we will be free indeed! A freedom that is based upon true information and endures forever!
By The Word of Truth, we are liberated from sin and the bondage that comes along with it!
Abiding in the word means we actually have to get into the word. How can we really dwell there and make it a part of who we are if we don’t know the word! We can’t live in someone else’s home so we need to make it our own!
We can take this even further by memorizing scripture. I wrote an article a while back titled Why I Started Memorizing Scripture ,so check that out if you want some inspiration!
If we hold to His teaching we truly and intimately know Him, the Word of Truth, Jesus Christ. This relationship brings freedom like nothing we could ever find in this world and this freedom is Eternal!
It’s time we seek Him and become set free from this bondage! If the son sets you free, you will be free indeed!