It is so, so difficult these days to know what the truth is about so many things that are happening in our world. To know which part of the news is ‘true’, which politicians are telling ‘the truth’, and which bits of information we are not being given, when we are being fed a particular story in the media or on-line. In addition we now have the post modern dilemma of truth being something that is ‘relative to me’. The statement, ‘This is my truth’, is now a valid way of elevating ‘my take’ on something that has happened, above the understanding of another. It can even be used to put others down, or nullify their understanding of something that has been experienced.
Truth is such an important thing; so necessary for any of us in any kind of civilized society to hold together. A common understanding of what the truth is, and therefore a free and fairly unbiased press has always been vital for a democracy to function properly. I now understand a little more why in a court of law, a witness swears to ‘Tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.’……with the help of God! None of us can make accurate judgments if we don’t have the true facts of a situation in our view. Pilate had this dilemma at Jesus trial, when Jesus told him, “Everyone on the side of truth listens to me”. Pilate then asked that now famous question, “What is truth?” How wonderful then, that, for us in the Kingdom of God, we have a God who is TRUE. Who is described in Revelation as the one who is called ‘Faithful and True’ Revelation 19:11.
It is so good that, as we approach the Christmas season, we can read again ‘The Word became flesh and lived for a while among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.’ John 1:14. Jesus even calls Himself ‘the Way the TRUTH and the Life,’ John 14:6, and He encouraged the Jews who were believing in Him, saying to them, “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. TRUTH is such an essential part of who our God is, and it is why we can, one hundred per cent, put all our confidence and trust in Him, both for our salvation, and for the whole of our lives.
Contrast the ‘trueness’ of our God, with the lying and deceptive nature of the enemy who was ‘a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies (and half truths)’ John 8:44 NIV (AMP). It is in his nature to lie, and therefore his main form of attack is to lie to us, and then by all means at his disposal, deceive us into believing those lies. This is probably why Paul, when encouraging us to use all the armour of God, starts by telling us to ‘stand firm, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist.’ Ephesians 6:14. The belt was of course necessary to hold other parts of the armour in place, especially the breastplate and the sword.
If I don’t protect myself from the enemy’s lies about the all sufficiency of Christ death and resurrection, then my breastplate of righteousness may have a few holes in it, making me vulnerable to accusation and condemnation, even to working hard to gain forgiveness, (yet again!) And if I don’t grasp the fundamental truths of God’s word, my sword will probably be a bit blunt, and I will lose my ‘cutting edge’ in any situation of warfare.
I do believe, (as I am sure you do by now), that keeping my heart filled with thanksgiving for all the truths I know from God’s word, guards me against any confusion that the enemy will try to bring into my heart and mind, particularly about my faith, God’s character, His goodness and faithfulness, etc etc. Keeping my heart filled with thanksgiving, for God’s ‘truths’, is a powerful antidote to any lies that the enemy brings to me. If my heart is full of gratitude, his lies will ‘jar’, but the truth that the Holy Spirit brings me will resonate with my spirit, bringing peace and freedom. This is because He is ‘the Spirit of truth’, who comes, ‘to guide us into all truth.’ John 16:12. So today I want to thank God so much that He embodies ‘truth’, that He is true, and therefore totally trustworthy. I want to thank Him that His written word is ‘truth’. And I thank Him that I have the Spirit of truth living within so that I can walk in His truth, and be protected from the lies of the evil one, by discerning those lies and half truths when they assault my mind. As I recognise them, I can then reject and refuse to partner with them. Instead I can replace them with ‘the truth’ that the Holy Spirit brings to mind, truth that God has already spoken in His Word