To Know the Truth!
By Elder Randy Slak
Truth, what do people say that it is? Is there really such a thing? Where does it come from and can we really know it? And if there really is such a thing, how can we be sure that there is? These are all good questions on the minds of many people, and the answer to them is of utmost importance as to how we see, react, and understand all that is going on around us and happening to us. Let's talk about this today.
Truth is most often used to mean in accord with fact or reality, or fidelity to an original or standard. The problem of truth is in a way easy to state; what truths are, and what, if anything makes them true. Synonyms for truth would be words like fact, precision, exactness, and antonyms or opposites would be words like falsehood, or falsity. So, where does the Christian go to find truth? We will start and end with the Bible.
To begin, "A natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised."(1Cor.2:14) The verse compares natural with spiritual; this is not only explained to us thru the mind but also the body, see (1Cor.15:44,46),(James 3:15). We need to have a new mind, a new way of spiritually appraising things. And where will this come from? Jesus has some things to share with us. He does not desire us to walk in darkness. God has a plan to help us see and know the truth. The writer to the Hebrews begins his epistle with these words, "God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son."(Heb.1:1,2) So with that said, what does Jesus say and can we believe Him? "But when He, the Spirit of Truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth, for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak."(John 16:13) Pilate questions Jesus and He responds in John 18:37, "For this have I been born, and for this have I come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears my voice." John 17:17 echoes this great truth from God himself talking to God the Father, "Thy word is truth." The great apostle Paul says," for our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction."(1Thess. 1:5) The Spirit is a must as we now all see. Without Him there is no truth, and He was the one who led all the Bible writers as Peter declares in 2Pet.1:21, "no prophesy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God." Jesus in His conversation shows how important the Spirit is to us in John 3:5-8.
English Puritan William Gurnall says, "He that knows not well what or whom he fights for, may soon be persuaded to change his side, or at least stand neutral." Those who do know their God will be strong and do exploits."(Dan.11:32) To flatteries they should be incorruptible, and to power and force unconquerable. The truth is of infinite value to us if His promises to us are true. And what we have already stated in the truth we can know, these promises bring incomparable, unshakable, unmistakable peace, joy, and contentment. Can we visit a couple of promises?
Math.7:11,"If you then, being evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him?" Jesus reminds us that," we should not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God."(Math.4:4) We can answer that of Math.7:11 with scripture of Psalm 84:11," No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly." If the cup that you drink is bitter, yet it is the cup that the Father has given you, we cannot expect poison to be in it, just like a father would not give his son any poison either. The father would as soon hurt himself than his child. English puritan John Flavel says, "Dost thou well to be discontent, when God has given the whole tree, with all the clusters of comfort growing on it, because He suffers the wind to blow down a few leaves?"
Jesus is not just a finite cistern for us to drink from. He is an everlasting fountain, a fountain of living water. (Jer.17:13) Never has He ever deceived anyone who put their trust in Him, who often gives more than His word says or promises, never less. English puritan Thomas Watson says, "Mercy makes the promise, and truth performs it. That is, if God has made a promise of mercy to His people, He will be so far from coming short of His word." Edward Leigh said, "Truth is precious and should be maintained, error is dangerous and should be opposed."
To close, maybe the greatest truth and promise in all the Bible, with a great comment perfectly fit to really show the infinite love of Him who authored it. From Romans 8:32,"He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?" What an incredible truth and promise of which John Flavel comments, "How is it imaginable that God should withhold, after this, spirituals or temporals from His people? How shall He not call them effectually, justify them freely, sanctify them thoroughly, and glorify them eternally? How shall He not clothe them, feed them, protect, and deliver them? Surely if He would not spare His own Son one stroke, one tear, one groan, one sigh, one circumstance of misery, it can never be imagined that ever He should, after this, deny or withhold from His people, for whose sakes all this was suffered, any mercies, any comforts, any privilege, spiritual or temporal, which is good from them."