When Is The Truth Not The Truth?
The quest to know truth is a noble cause. Whether it is in reference to civic events, the state of the union address, or medical results, there are those who adamantly want to know the truth. Conversely, there are always those who are “less committed” to truth. In their desire to maintain personal peace and happiness, they have a unique relationship with truth. Their truth is often not a traditional truth. So, when is truth not the truth?
What is Truth?
Before we can answer our all important question, we must first define what truth is. During Pilate’s interrogation of the Son of Man, he asks the question, “What is truth?” (Jn. 18:38). He certainly gets points for wanting to know what truth is. He also gets points for knowing who to ask. However, he loses points for not allowing Jesus Christ to answer his question. Pilate asks the question then immediately goes out to address the crowd. He walks out on the personification of truth. Simply put, truth is whatever God says. God’s truth, like God himself, does not change. God’s truth remains the truth in every century and to all people.
Truth is not the Truth When it is Subjective Truth
For many today, God’s word seems to have changed from absolute truth to now just being God’s opinion. “Thus saith the Lord” no longer carries the weight it once did. Somewhere along the way, people started to think that truth, even biblical truth, is only what they personally determine as truth. This is called subjective truth. Subjective truth changes from circumstance to circumstance. The Ten Commandments have become the ten suggestions. Sin is redefined. Salvation is redefined. The means of sanctification is redefined. Of course, this is an expression of their truth and not God’s truth. Personal bias must yield to God’s truth if it is, in fact, truth.
Truth is not the Truth When it Contradicts God’s Word.
Whether it’s basketball, football, tennis, or bowling, there must always be some central rule book that dictates the parameters of that particular sport. Rules cannot change on the whims of one or more players. The same applies to truth. The central source of truth for Christianity has been, is currently, and will always be God’s holy word. God placed in His word all that we need to know in order to walk in relationship with Him and with each other. You can state something as truth, but if it contradicts the proper interpretation of God’s word, then it is not the truth.
Truth is not the Truth If It Is A Mixture of Truth
We have all heard the instruction of the court clerk to “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God.” I remember times when I was a child, I would give the truth, but not the whole truth. I gave enough to convince my mother that she had heard the truth. Some preachers do the same. They tell partial truths. There might be enough truth for the people to assume they have heard the truth, but they are really being deceived. Remember, error often rides in on the back of truth—partial truths, that is.
You Shall Know the Truth
Jesus said, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (Jn. 8:32). Through the Holy Spirit, God’s truth is available to all who desire it. As promised, the end result of God’s truth is that it makes one free. To the level a person compromises on truth is to the level that a person is bound. Freedom comes as we stand committed to, and actively seek, God’s truth.