Let us pray: Dear Savior, You alone are the King of all creation. You alone know everything and shape and mold everything so that Your name will be hallowed and Your kingdom of grace may flourish. Today give us a glimpse into Your greater truth that surrounds and protects us. Amen
GRACE MERCY AND PEACE ARE YOURS FROM OUR LOVING KING!
TEXT: John 18: 34-38
Dearly Beloved By Christ:
I watched a little bit of the spectacle in Washington over the past 2 weeks. I watched various witnesses being sworn in, declaring they would recount: “The truth, the whole truth.” And it brought to mind the question of Pilate to Christ: “What is truth?” Let’s ponder it.
Is it the truth to declare “the sun is shining?” Well, not today in Burlington, MA. But somewhere in the world it is. So, that truth is therefore dependent on where you live and what time of day it is. Such truth is relative. How about: “Today is November 24, 2019.” Is that true? Again, it depends on the calendar you’re following. Here’s another one: “I love you.” How? In what way? Does your love ever waver or fade? Such truths are relative. Some will say: What about the truths of science? I answer: How do you know gravity exists throughout the universe in the exact same way we understand it? Maybe there’s an alternate universe where it doesn’t exist? By now you’re a bit exasperated. Truth, human truth, is relative, dependent upon our understanding of something at that time and in that situation. Is it any wonder Pilate was a cynic and mockingly asked Jesus: “What is truth?”
What precipitated this exchange between the Roman governor and Christ, the King of all creation? It was Jesus saying: “You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”
This whole exchange brings up a reality-jarring problem all humans face. That is the difference between subjective truth vs. objective truth. Subjective truth is whatever is true for you. So, color blind people see red whenever most others see green or blue. What is “true” for one may not be “true for the other.” Likewise, a sociopath may adopt a murderous lifestyle as “truth” whereas most others would say: “That’s horrible and wrong!” If you boil it down, most of what is called: “truth” in this life, is utterly subjective. That is, it’s right for me but not necessarily right for anyone else. And of course, this breeds chaos, so we try to ignore the problem and sort of let the majority rule.
Then there’s objective truth, or “it’s true whether you believe it or not.” Or, it’s true and correct even though you may not understand or grasp its correctness. Let me ask you this: “What happens when you die? Where do you go? What do you do? Do the same rules of earthly life apply in the hereafter? And how and from what source do you know anything about this?” By definition time isn’t timeless. So, is truth timeless?
Pilate was what we’d call a modern man. He was a cynic. He questioned everything and believed only in what he had experienced: The power of might makes right and money buys anything. His question: “What is truth?” stems from all that he could not quantify.
Jesus’ answer to Pilate is intriguing. “Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.” That’s a stunning statement. It presupposes that Jesus knows real truth. He presupposes that Jesus possesses knowledge far beyond mere human comprehension. It presupposes that He possesses knowledge, wisdom and understanding which is timeless and infinite. Pilate was a smart cynic and he grasped a portion of what Christ was saying. No wonder he responds with: “What is truth?”
Jesus’ response is grounded in the truth that God exists, that He alone knows truth, and that Jesus is God in human flesh. Recall Him saying: “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” That would make Him the King of the universe, answerable to no one. And because Jesus is God’s Son and there’s unity in the Trinity, all this is True!
Jesus tells us about Himself in the Bible. Here’s another passage: “God Word is truth!” So, whatever the Bible says is correct across all ages and stands the test of time and human relativity. So, when Scripture tells us not to: cheat, steal, lie, murder, or commit adultery—those truths are always in force. Thus, whoever breaks those rules sins against God and “the soul that sins it shall die.” Such truth is black and white with no extenuating circumstances. Otherwise God’s truth isn’t true.
But there’s another great truth in the Bible. It is this: “God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them anymore.” That truth is the Gospel. It is encapsulated in Jesus’ own words from the cross: “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” God is light and him dwells no darkness at all. God is love. Those truths show and tell us how He conquered the untruth of Satan’s lies. They tell us that Godly truth won an eternal victory over sin and evil on the cross and confirmed it by rising from the dead. So, even that commonly accepted truth: “When you die, you die” is false! For Christ died but came back to life! He did it for you and me. And when we believe in Him, or as Jesus says here: “Everyone on the side of truth listens to Me” well, God’s truth trumps human relativity.
My friends, Christ is our King! He knows the truth, gives it to us through faith, and it sets us free! It sets us free from the silliness of human understanding about all the great issues of this life and the one beyond. It provides us a paradigm for living: “If you continue in My words, then you are my disciples; and then you shall know the truth and that truth shall set you free!”
Truth is a beautiful thing in that it is never wrong and never goes out of style. So listen to Christ the Purveyor of real truth and no matter what occurs in this life you WILL live happily ever after! Our King has made it so and nothing and no one can change that fact!
THE PEACE OF GOD WHICH…..