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Over the past few years my blog has been visited by people from all over the world. Very few know me, or of me, they simply are looking information concerning the Bible and discover my blog. After many years of intense study and teaching, I've come to believe we are vulnerable to misguided and incorrect teaching if we don't understand for ourselves the teaching of God's Word. My 'hot buttons' are - grace, sovereignty, exhortations and sanctification. If you understand these basic principles of Scripture, and apply them to daily life, you will understand what it means to have peace, joy and absolute security in any circumstance.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

SEARCHING FOR TRUTH

If there is truth in the world, don't you want to know it? It appears to me that often our lives literally 'hang in the balance' waiting for truth to be exposed. In terms of politics, I might say covering up truth to protect a lie becomes a game so many play. The cover-up is usually more damaging then the original lie.

        If you are a parent or been blessed to have children in your life, you know the extent to which we go to make sure the child in our care is 'truthful', above all. I remember telling my own five children that they'd never get a spanking, which in our case was a swat on their backside, if they told the truth. If I found out they had not told the truth; they were in big trouble!

        Once a pattern has been set, it's hard to find your way out. If you've been caught in a lie, or telling only part of the truth, or twisted the truth for your benefit, beware, you won't be trusted. If you are a child, a wife, husband, parent, teacher, pastor, supervisor, neighbor - doesn't matter; you've lost the full trust, and I might add, respect, of those who are important in your life.

        Okay, I need to 'get real' and acknowledge the fact that we all tell 'little white lies' and this often is because we don't want to 
hurt someone's feelings. Friends may pull up in your driveway in a new car. They jump out and ask, "How do you like my new car?" You're standing there thinking 'This is the ugliest color I've ever seen; who'd want to drive a car the color of mustard?  but you smile, and say, "Oh, I love it!" 

        I believe, in order to grasp a more complete definition of the word 'truth', we need to look at the Greek and Hebrew, as these were the primary languages used by those God choose to author the Bible. The Greek word for truth is aletheia and has a broader definition than merely truth as spoken, but also truth of an idea, reality, sincerity, truth in the moral sphere, divine truth revealed to man and straightforwardness. 

        Emeth is the word for truth in the Hebrew language and among the definitions is "firmness, faithfulness, lasting." Truth is a complex word and one that is used over and over again in Scripture. As you broaden your understanding you begin to comprehend its fullness and verses will come alive with new meaning. 

        Those of you who have stumbled across the following verse in the Bible may have given pause and meditated on what it means.

If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free." John 8:31-32.

These are words spoken by Jesus Christ. What was He talking about? I will admit there was a time I wondered, "Free from what?" I knew I wasn't perfect, but never considered myself a "sinner". He was addressing the fact that God has a truth and if we are faithful to listen to His teaching, we also will know the truth. Jesus taught His disciples that He is the way to have a relationship with God; the only way. Jesus paid the penalty for sin for all who believe in Him; we are now free of sin and death and perfectly acceptable to God.   
  
"Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." Acts 4:12

"For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions (sins) from us."  
Psalm 103: 11-12

        We know how important 'truth' is in Scripture when we go to a concordance and number the times God uses this word. King David understood it is important to be guided by truth. He prayed in Psalm 25, 'guide me in your truth'. In Psalm 31 David recognizes that God is a God of truth. He asked the Lord to "teach me your way" so he could walk in God's truth, Psalm 86. 

        "I, the Lord, speak the truth; I declare what is right."
Isaiah 45:19

Notice, the politics of the day doesn't declare what is right, God does. We can make all the laws we want, but in the end, only God's law will stand. Think about that. Meditate on that! The apostle Paul wrote in Acts 20 that "men will rise and distort the truth." Have you noticed? What is good and right according to God's Word is now bad and criminal. I heard someone say recently that he had taken a good hard look at what is happening in our world and was busy getting 'his ducks in a row' because surely the Lord is coming back soon! 

      Jesus Christ is very bold, extremely confident, and totally and completely God. The one thing we need to know when we set about getting our ducks in a row is the response to the question Thomas asked, "Lord. . .how can we know the way?" Jesus answered -

"I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."  John 14:6

Jesus did not say He was one way, He said He was THE WAY! He said He is THE TRUTH, not a truth. And best of all, "In Him was life and that life was the light of men." John 1:4. 

        We don't come into the presence of God the Father in heaven by following the law, being good, going to church, studying the Bible, or baking cookies for our neighbor. The only way is to understand that Jesus is our Lord and Savior. It's not the life we have lived, it's Jesus' life that counts in our behalf. This is God's plan; this is grace.

        The Bible says, so many times I've lost count, that God said "I tell you the truth." In the King James Version the words, "verily, verily" are used. Some have "spiritual ears", some do not. Jesus said, "Let those who have ears. . ."  He didn't mean physical ears, He meant spiritual ears to hear the truth. We may stretch the truth, tell a little white lie now and then, or even tell some big lies, but God never lies, not ever, not once. 

Lord, I pray that those you love won't listen to worldly lies and be firm in your reality and truth.