WHAT IS TRUTH?
Who would have thought that a belief in absolute truth would be under attack in our day in age? Today, young people are embracing a “feel good” truth to satisfy their appetite, and paradoxically, pastors and churches are shifting towards a “One-Size-Fits-All” mentality of truth.
But we’ve seen this dismissal of truth before. Centuries ago standing right in front of Pontius Pilate was the embodiment of truth, Jesus Christ. Jesus confronted Pilate, “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” (Jn. 19:37). However, despite the overwhelming proof of Christ’s innocence, and his indisputable claim as God, Pilate responded flippantly, “What is truth” (Jn. 19:38)?
Rather than discover the truth, Pilate rejected it to appease the Jews and maintain his status with the Emperor. But what Pilate failed to realize, and most of Americans, is that truth is of utmost importance; for without it, we would know nothing.
So what is truth?
Simply put, truth is telling it like it is. That is, truth corresponds with the way things really are. This acrostic will help you remember what is T.R.U.E. about truth.
Transcendent – Truth comes from God and He has revealed it to His creation. Take gravity for example. Newton didn’t determine gravity; he merely discovered its existence. In the same way, humans know truth because God reveals it in His creation and in His Word (the Bible).
Real – Truth matches (corresponds to) the facts in the real world. You can’t have two opposing things be true at the same time and in the same sense. That would be a contradiction.
Universal – Truth applies to all people, at all times and in all locations. For example, 1+1=2 is a universal truth that is not challenged or denied.
Exclusive – Truth is absolute. Though opinions about truth change, truth, on the other hand, remains the truth and therefore cannot change. Beliefs change but not truth.
Be careful not to buy into the self-defeating belief that truth is relative. For even the claim that there is no absolute truth claims to be absolutely true. There are many people today that push their thinking on Christians to be more “tolerant” and accept the belief that truth is not absolute or exclusive. King David writes, “Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation” (Ps. 25:5). God is truth and your life is in far better hands than the lies spouted out in the world.