Truth is defined as that which is real, genuine, certain, valid, factual. Truth is actuality, that which can be trusted because it is the things that are. In the Bible, truth is spoken of as an attribute of God. Twice Isaiah tells us that He is the God of truth. Titus 1:2 contends that God cannot lie. So, that which is revealed by God, inspired by God, breathed by God, is truth and can be trusted as genuine and valid. Note some truths about truth:
1. Truth can be known. Jesus said, "You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" (John 8:32). We can know truth by studying the Scriptures, which are inspired by the Holy Spirit and which testify about Jesus. John wrote, "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth" (John 1:14). Jesus plainly stated that He was the truth in John 14:6: "I am the way and the truth and the life." Do we know truth?
2. Truth, when obeyed, sanctifies. Jesus prayed, "Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth" (John 17:17). As we respond to the guidance of the Spirit, we are cleansed by truth. Paul tells us as much: "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless" (Ephesians 5:25-27).
3. Truth sets us free and apart. What is sanctification? Being freed from sin and the eternal consequences of sin. Sanctification sets us free and sets us apart. You see, when we are washed with water by the Word (Ephesians 5:26), we are raised to walk in a newness of life (Romans 6:4). Paul goes on to say that we become instruments of righteousness, living sacrifices (Romans 6:13; 12:1). Peter says that we are a holy nation, a royal priesthood, a people belonging to God (1 Peter 2:5,9). As we allow the Spirit of truth to lead us, as we keep in step with Him, we produce His fruit -- love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Indeed, this fruit sets us apart. Right?
4. Truth should set us ablaze. Remember Jeremiah? "His word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot" (Jeremiah 20:9). If and when we are genuinely convinced that we have the truth of God in us, we cannot hold it back. Like Jeremiah, we are forced to proclaim His truth to others.
His truth sets us ablaze in another way also: it keeps us from sin. David wrote, "I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you" (Psalm 119:11). Truth hidden in our heart regulates our attributes, our disposition, and even our daily behavior.
5. Truth must be contended for. We are instructed to "contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints" (Jude 3). "The faith" refers to that body of truth once delivered. This truth is not only to be proclaimed, it is to be defended. Why? Because it is the good news of the Gospel that saves. In Colossians 1:5, Paul speaks of "the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven, and that you have already heard about the word of truth, the gospel..." Indeed, we must contend for the faith, stand up for truth, fight the good fight, keep the faith -- because we, as the church of God, are the pillar and ground of the truth (1 Timothy 3:15).
What is truth? What is our relationship to truth? Do we know it? Do we know Him? Are we bearing His fruit? Are we obeying truth? Are we walking in the light? I pray that we are. "So if the Son sets you fee," Jesus said in John 8:36, "you will be free indeed." Indeed!