Friday, October 1, 2010

The Truth


“The truth” (John 14:6)

Can we know “the truth”? Or is it arrogant to claim to know “the truth”? In our pluralistic society, claiming to know “the truth” means you are a narrow-minded thinker. Recently I was told that I am so far into the box that I won’t even try to peak outside; which was followed by this, “Who are you to say that what you believe in is the ‘real’ deal?” Basically I was being asked how can you claim to know “the truth”?

We need to see who is saying they are “the truth.” If it was me claiming to be “the truth” than I would be a narrow-minded, arrogant fool but let me assure you I am not the one claiming to be “the truth.” In John 14:6 Jesus Christ says, “I am the way, the truth and the life.” Jesus is throwing away the idea of pluralism when he puts the definite article “the” in front of his claims. Jesus is the eternal God who left the glories of heaven to take the form of humanity (Phil. 2:5-7). He left heaven to become lowly man. Jesus Christ came for a purpose. His purpose was to completely obey his Father’s will which included bearing his wrath for sinners on the cross (Phil. 2:8). But when Jesus claims to be God and the only way to the Father how can we know this is true? The empty tomb backs up his claims. Jesus proved his claims by dying and then resurrecting three days later defeating sin and death for good. All other claims in religion are just not true. Leaders have come and gone but Jesus Christ has always been and will always be because he is the eternal God. Believing Jesus or rejecting Jesus will affirm whether or not you know “the truth.”

I know this sounds like arrogance rather than love but maybe an illustration will help. My hope and prayer is to present this with great humility, knowing God’s grace alone in my own life is the only thing that has revealed this truth to me. Let’s look at a simple arithmetic equation: 2 + 2 = 4. We all know 4 is the only correct answer to this equation. There are not multiple answers but just one. Maybe you believe the answer is 6 but the truth still remains that the correct answer is 4. But let’s say a person truly did not know the answer to the equation, it would not be arrogant to correct them. Think about parents who are teaching their children these equations. When the child answers incorrectly it is not prideful to correct them but rather loving. The same is true about everything. A dog is a dog. A cat is a cat. Peanut butter is peanut butter. A house is a house. I hope you get the idea that we can know the truth about matters in life. Why would it change when it comes to religion? How can religion be the only exception? That doesn’t make sense. There has to be truth and Jesus Christ is “the truth.”

Christian, rest confidently in Jesus Christ. The argument the world has against the claim to know “the truth” is not with you but with the God-man Jesus Christ. He claimed to be “the truth” therefore those who are trusting in him for salvation can confidently speak that truth to others. He is the One who claimed that he came to die and live again. Mission accomplished! Jesus Christ backed up every single claim therefore we can rest in the promises in his Word. We can know “the truth.” This is not arrogance or narrow-mindedness but rather truth. Truth is truth. Speak it to others with grace and love knowing it was God’s grace that awakened your dead heart. The truth won’t produce arrogance but ought to cultivate humility. Speak “the truth” often, speak it boldly, speak it clearly and trust God to do the work that only he can do in the lives of those he came to save.

Grace upon grace,
JRL

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