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what is truth in the bible

What is truth in the bible

So, what is truth in the bible? There can be only ONE truth. You can’t have multiple truths different from each other, right? So, what is that truth? How do we walk in it?

Introduction

The word of God calls for us to walk in truth. We are even called to worship in truth. How can we walk or worship in truth if we do not understand what truth is? What is truth in the bible? Pontius Pilate asked the same question to Jesus during His trial, before being handed over for crucifixion.

Scripture References

John 18:37-38  – Pilate, therefore, said to Him, “Are you a king then?” Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause, I was born, and for this cause, I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” Pilate said to Him, “What is truth?”
So I ask you too? What is truth? It is important for us to know what truth is so we can distinguish it from what is NOT the truth.

3 John 1:3-4 – For I rejoiced greatly when brethren came and testified of the truth that is in you, just as you walk in the truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.
Psalm 86:11 – Teach me Your way O LORD; I will walk in Your truth
1 John 1:6 – If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

The Teaching

There is a requirement then that we understand what is truth in the bible firstly and then “intentionally practice” it. If we claim to have fellowship with Christ and do not practice walking in truth, then we are walking in darkness. Probably that explains why many Christians suffer unnecessarily.

So what exactly is truth in the bible? Most of us in this world are programmed to think that truth is relative. In Pilates’s case, his truth was that Jesus was innocent. But the truth according to the Jews was that Jesus was a blasphemer. Both of them thought they were right. This notion that there is no universal truth is probably the root cause of why we have so many religions and even factions amongst the children of God. If truth depends on the perspective each one has, then there is no firm ground and no frame of reference. There will always be a valid contradiction of every viewpoint.
So what is truth in the bible? There can be only ONE truth. You can’t have multiple truths different from each other, right? So, what is that truth? How do we walk in it?

Truth can be relative and subjective in situations in this world. For eg: You might be wearing sunglasses and I am not. I might say “The sun is too bright and blinding…and you might say, “It’s not”. Both of our statements are true for each of us. This truth is relative and subjective to the situation.

That’s not what our Lord Jesus is talking about though. There is one absolute truth when it comes to God and the God kind of life that He destined for us. When I say, “There is one God” and you say “There are many gods” and someone else says “There is no God”. Now, these are the opinions of 3 people, but all of them cannot be true. Only one of them is true and if so, the other two are lies or false. This notion that what is true for you is true for you and what is true for me is true for me is the reason why many Christians suffer. This is carnal thinking, otherwise called worldly thinking. Most of us think that whatever it is that we are experiencing; is the truth for us. This is why people often say, “You don’t understand what I’m going through”, etc. Most often, it is not THE TRUTH as our Lord Jesus defined truth at all. You see…the Jews thought that the truth was that Jesus was a blasphemer claiming to be God. Why? Because they were blinded by sin and were programmed by worldly thinking. All they could see was Jesus being a man claimed to be God. But the actual truth was something else. Jesus was indeed God who became man so he could rescue us. He came to His own and His own received Him not. Likewise, most Christians acknowledge what they see and experience as truth, which is not actually the truth. The bible says, “Set your minds on things above, not on things on the earth. Col 3:2.” The bible says “For we walk by faith, not by sight. 2 Cor 5:6-7

Scripture References

John 17:14-1714 I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. 15 My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. 17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.

Jesus says “We are not of this world just as He is not of this world. Interestingly in verse 9 of the same chapter, Jesus says, “I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given me” and in verse 17 He says “Sanctify them by Your truth” or separate them out by your truth. Therefore, once separated, the group of people left out is not of the truth.  

John 14:6 – I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; nobody comes to the Father except through Me.

Before Jesus came, John the Baptist came bearing witness to the truth.

John 1:14 – The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Ver 17 – For the law was given through Moses, grace, and truth came through Jesus Christ.

The Teaching

That means, until Jesus came, people were blind and couldn’t comprehend the truth. They thought they knew but they didn’t really know the truth. Whatever life gave them and whatever they experienced; they considered that to be the truth.  But Jesus came and along with Him; truth came.

The truth about life. The truth about who we are. The truth about what authority we have here on earth. The truth about our real identity. The truth about the devil.

When Jesus (truth) came, He started healing the sick, casting out demons, etc. The bible says the people were astonished that He was speaking to demons and sick bodies and that they obeyed Him. Then He raised the dead. People were gobsmacked. They had never seen such things. He even spoke to the winds and the waves. He spoke to the tree. He walked on water. Until such time, the world was accustomed to the lies of the devil so much so that we believed that that was the truth and life in general. Sickness, hardships, and death were all part of life. Nobody ever thought that they could have authority over these things. Sin had separated us from our Father God and we had lost our true identity. When the disciples tried to cast out demons and failed, they asked Jesus, “Why could we not cast it out?” Jesus said because of your unbelief. And then He said, I tell you the truth, if you have faith as much as a mustard seed…. you would say to this mountain. He was talking to us about how we could live if we knew the truth.

Unbelief is usually because you don’t know the truth. If you know the truth, you won’t have a problem with belief.

John 8:25-34 – (ver 31) Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Free from what? Jesus says He who continues to sin is a slave to sin. So, He was referring to freedom from sin in this context. Abide means “settle down” “take up residence”. Here it would mean that our lives are dictated by the word of God because that is the truth. Everything else is NOT the truth. If we did that, then we would be free. Free from sin and therefore free from the consequences of sin too.

He said I am the way, the truth, and the life. So that confirms that the truth was something else than what the world was used to.  If He had to proclaim, “I am the way, the truth”….then the people were probably a slave or under a spell to lies. And Jesus had come to show them the truth.

All through the New Testament, when Jesus mentions “truth” he implied that there is a truth that is quite different from the lie people were living in. If He didn’t intend to contrast, then there would be no point in using the term “I tell you the truth” or I am the truth or walk in truth, etc. Eg: I tell you the truth unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God. I tell you the truth until heaven and earth pass away not the smallest letter…. Also, I tell you the truth, it is for your good that I am going away and I tell you the truth if you had faith as a mustard seed…

Our Lord kept insisting, “I tell you the truth…” because He wanted us to know and understand that what we think to be true in this world isn’t actually the truth. We thought the truth was that it is impossible to cast out demons, but He said “I tell you the truth if you have faith as a mustard seed…”. We thought the truth was we could gain access to God by good works and sacrifices, but He said “I tell you the truth unless you are born again…..” Am sure, you get the point.

John 16:12-13 – I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth…”

We all have the Holy Spirit in us and He has guided us into all truth or is guiding us into all truth every day.

For us the truth is this:

We are no longer sinners. We have been made righteous by the blood of Christ and we have been reconciled to our Father; God. There is nothing separating us anymore. The veil tore.

There is now no condemnation at all for us. We are not under law but under grace.

When Jesus died, we died. When he rose again we rose too. When He ascended into heaven, we did too. When He sat down at the right hand of the Father, we were seated together with Him in the heavenly places. Ephesians 2:6

We have been translated into the kingdom of God from the kingdom of darkness – Col 1:13

He took all our diseases, sicknesses. He really did. By His stripes, we were healed.  – Matthew 8:16-17, Isaiah 53:4

We are citizens of heaven, not of this world at all – Phil 3:20-21

We are born again and we were born of the word. Therefore we have the life of God in us. 1 Pet 1:23

We have been given authority over ALL the power of the enemy. John 14:12 says all that Jesus did, we will do also.

This is really the truth. When Jesus came, the truth came and this is that truth. Before the gospel, people didn’t know who they were, what they were capable of. They had become slaves to sin and were blind to the truth. Satan kept us blinded and in bondage to sin. The prideful and arrogant oppressed the godly. The godly had a beggarly mentality, an attitude of helplessness and dependency without any boldness. The apostles were like this too until the Holy Spirit came and guided them into the truth. The knowledge of that truth then made them bold. This is why Peter and John had the courage to tell the crippled man to “Get up and walk”. One time Peter met a man Aeneas who was bedridden for 8 years. Peter simply said, “Arise and make your bed. Jesus the Christ heals you”.  Acts 9:34. The secret to having dominion over evil is walking in the truth. The truth of who you are, and what Christ has revealed to you. The truth is that the devil is now powerless over you. The truth is that you are a citizen of heaven. The truth is that you are a child of God, who is now our Father and who is ALL Powerful.

Therefore, if we are to walk in truth, then we ought to be walking like we really are who God says we are…(as per above). What does that look like? We ought to look at every situation in our life and analyze if it’s the truth as we know it or a lie from the devil. Because there cannot be two truths. When you feel condemned, then ask yourself, is this the truth or a lie from the devil? Because the truth is that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. When you feel lonely and depressed, ask yourself, is this the truth or a lie from the devil? Because the truth is that He will never ever leave us nor forsake us. The truth is that Jesus will not leave us as orphans. It’s a mindset we need to carry and be conscious of all the time. Always believe the truth (the word of God) and reject any thought that contradicts the word of God. Technically, Jesus has made it an impossibility for the enemy to work against His beloved children, which is you. No weapon formed against you shall prosper.

2 Peter 1:3-4 says “He has given us ALL things pertaining to both LIFE and Godliness.

Unfortunately, for most of us, our default stance is to consider our immediate circumstances in this world as the truth. We think we are in this world, and God is in heaven. What we go through here is the truth and we cry out to God for intervention and miracles all the time…as if He is separate from us. But the “truth” is that He will never leave us nor forsake us. He is in us. Christ in us, the hope of Glory. We are seated together with Him. God does indeed do miracles and answer prayers amazingly……..for baby Christians. But stay a Christian for a while and you will soon realize that life is not always full of miracles. As we grow in maturity, we realize that Christianity is walking by faith in His word (the truth) in the face of adversity and challenges. This is because God wants us to grow. He says Abide in my word. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

The Apostle Paul went through a lot of hardships. He was beaten, flogged, stoned, shipwrecked, imprisoned….but it didn’t affect his faith one bit. Why? Because he was walking in the truth, which is the word of God. He knew this world and everything in it is temporary, and not worth comparing to the truth which is eternal.

As we grow into mature children of God, we need to literally live conscious of who we are and where we are from and separate that out from what we experience here in this world. Yes, we will face sorrowful situations. Perhaps a loved one might pass away and leave us. Yes, we may face unimaginable grief, but we do not grieve as the world does. We live in the hope of eternal life. I don’t mean to belittle hardships in our lives, but as Paul did amidst his hardships, let us also in the face of hardships choose to walk in the truth revealed in the word of God, rather than dwell on the temporal nature of the situation in this world.

If you choose to walk by your experiences here, the bible says “we walk in darkness.

1 John 1:6 – If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

To better understand what happens when we suppress the truth and walk in lies, read Romans 1:18-32 with an emphasis on ver 18 – “suppress the truth in unrighteousness”, and ver 25– “exchanged the truth of God for the lie”.

God’s Wrath Against Sinful Humanity

18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.

Closing Prayer

Father God, You are indeed the way, the truth, and the life. Help us, Lord, to remember that your word is the truth. Not our experiences and what the world considers the norm. Grant us the grace to be able to walk by faith and may our feelings and responses be guided by your truth rather than by our experiences. In Jesus’ name, I pray, Amen.

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