Jesus and Truth
Sadly, truthfulness is revolutionary. It is revolutionary because deceit has become the preferred method of being.
Tricked Abraham into lying about his wife Sarah.
Convinced Jacob to steal his brother’s birthright.
Caused Achan to partake in forbidden things.
Comes from the devil, and if given permission, he will use everything in his arsenal to deceive us.
Proverbs 6:16-19 ” There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brother.”
Jesus is all about Truth
How does Jesus come to us? He comes to us “full of grace and truth.” John 1:14
How does Jesus identify Himself? He identifies Himself as “the way, the truth and the life.” John 14:6.
How does Jesus bless us with His truth? He says “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31, 32.
What is Truth?
Divine truth is not synonymous with human opinion. In other words, truth is not truth because your mother did it this way. Truth is not truth because of traditional patterns or cultural habits. Truth is not rooted in logic, because logic is not an authority on spiritual matters. I am not saying that truth is not logical; I am simply saying there are times when it transcends logic.
So, what is truth. Jesus clearly answers this question in a prayer recorded in John 17:17 when He says “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” This is the barometer by which Christ measures truthfulness: The Word of God.
Anything that contradicts the Word of God isn’t true.
What is Truth
How many times has it been said prior to making a detrimental decision about marriage, about business or life? “I feel as if it was the right thing to do.” “I feel that God is leading me to do this or that.”
God doesn’t lead us with feelings, He leads us with His Word.
What is the Value of Truth?
Truth sets us free. When we are not people of truth, our energy disappears, our character decays, and our integrity depreciates.
Read Matthew 26:37-41 This narrative captures three ways in which Christ models the kind of truth we should emulate.
Truthful with Ourselves
God already knows what we want and need to talk about. But we confess in order to acknowledge our authentic selves. We confess because we recognize there can be no transformation without open and honest communication. Quite simply, you must tell the truth to yourself about yourself.
I am a liar. I’m a workaholic. I love to hard. I have extreme issues. I mismanage money. I don’t like my mother. I don’t like my father.
Be Truthful with God
Again Matthew 26:39 ”My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”
I imagine that there are times when we are praying to God that He is wondering when we are really going to talk to Him. When are we going to tell Him about our true struggles, and when we are going to open up and acknowledge our weaknesses.
God wants you to tell Him exactly what is going on in our hearts. God doesn’t just want you to present you good side, He wants you to reveal your real self.
Be Truthful with Others
Jesus tells His friends the truth. He asks Peter, “Could you not watch with me one hour?” In other words, Jesus is displeased with how the disciples handled that moment. He is clearly disappointed, and He vocalizes that truth.
Read Ephesians 4:14, 15. Let’s learn something from Paul in this passage.
Bridging the Gap
Without question, Jesus models a truth that never has to raise its voice to be heard. Jesus models a truth that often repeats lessons over and over again until the disciples get it. Jesus’ truth was patient, even-tempered, kind, tenderhearted and forgiving, and full of compassion. In the same way, our truth must be spoken in love.
We balance our conversations with sincere affirmation, direct confrontation, and encouragement–in that order. When you need to confront someone, begin the conversation by affirming the relationship.
When you confront others, be clear and concise. Do not simply talk–communicate. Resist the tendency to beat around the bush, and ask God to help you to speak in a language your hearer can understand. You’ve heard it said “It’s not always what you say, but how you say it.” That is so true.
Once you confront, then confirm. Encourage your listener. Assure them of your desire to see the relationship grow because of this conversation. Tell the truth, but do so in love. You cannot control their response, but you can surely convey truth God’s way.
When you affirm, confront, and encourage, we re-present Jesus in a way that honors God. When we speak the truth in love, we reconcile the Christ of the Bible with the Christians who bear His name.