These have come so that your faith ó of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire ó may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed 1 Peter 1:7
Men and women of integrity consider that truth is priceless and for that reason nurtures a deep respect for the truth. They understand that the truth provides them with a desirable quality of life, the assurance of success, the hope for the future, the opportunity to succeed in life and the ability to prosper. On the other hand, Christians also know that Satan is a good example of deception, as someone who couldnít care less about the truth is as long as you donít believe or trust in God. Following the example of Satan, the children of this world abuse the truth to con or deceive others for their personal gain. In the long run, those who cherish the truth are held in honor while the double standard of the world reprimands those who abuse truth.
Truth is like a sword, those who know how to use the sword survive to live another day, but those who handle the sword without training or practice get injured or lose their life. If there was a moral to this statement knowing how to handle the truth increases your chances of surviving this world. For example, the indiscretions of notable politicians are kept quiet, covered over and past deeds are put in the closet to be forgotten. When you think about this example, you will notice that the hidden indiscretions became the very thing that ended their political career. The average person has to wonder what truth is when truth is suppressed or manipulated to one's advantage on a regular basis? One truth can not be denied, the majority of humanity does not plan for the day they face his or her creator. Like the hidden indiscretions of the politician most people donít know that their deeds provide the evidence of his or her worth and influences Godís decision of where they will spend eternity.
When God created the heavens and the earth he made his existence known to mankind being understood through the work of his hands.
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, Psalms 19:1-4
Anyone can see for their self the evidence that a belief in a god is universal when they travel from one country to another. The existence of God is a no-brainer, even among fools who say there is no god. Since they deny God his existence the fool is a god of his or her own making. There are hundreds of beliefs in God throughout the world with each saying that they worship the true God. While some religions worship a representation of their god, no one has ever seen the God that created the heavens and the earth.
On the most part, mankind believes that God is a Supreme Being who is far superior to man in intellect and power. God is able to do whatís unimaginable and impossible for the human mind to conceive and therefore worthy of worship. By design, the God of creation created man to be autonomous being and able to worship the God of his choice. However, God has forewarned mankind that he would allow the god you serve to save you. Elijah, the servant of God asked the same question God is asking of you.
How long will you waver between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him." 1 Kings 18:21
According to the beliefs of Christianity, God gave man the authority to govern over the creatures of the earth with the right to determine his own destiny. A destiny governed by a personal choice. God gave man the choice of life and death Ė with eternal life in the presence of God and death separated from Godís presence in the lake of fire.
Throughout the word of God, God urged man to choose life and warned man what to expect if he chose to reject God. Unfortunately the majority of the world is seeking the things of life rather than the one who gives life.
Those who believe in the God of creation understand that God has a code of conduct and is very serious about the moral behavior of his children. In addition God has a name that he is particularly fond of which speaks of the authority and origin of the family. The name ďFatherĒ speaks of manís origin, the beginning point of life and to the person who sired the human race. Like a parent, God wants his children to properly mature and live prudently in a world where his childís decision affects the lives of other people. Parentís demands respect and expect obedience from their children and relate obedience with love. Normally parents do not demand obedience because they have the authority, but because they donít want their children to be harmed. Overall, children who love and respect their parents are ready to face the world armed with one specific truth. They want to hear these words. This is my child whom I am well pleased with, When Jesus comes for his elect.
Pilate asked ďwhat is truthĒ while trying to restore order in the midst of a religious riot. The Pharisees accused Jesus Christ of blasphemy and found him worthy of death under Hebrew law. However, the Roman Empire governed with a different standard of morality and would not allow the Pharisees to put anyone to death. Under Roman law, Pilate found no basis to condemn Jesus to death and was ready to release him. However, Pilate passed the buck by sending Jesus to Herod who also refused to pass sentence on Jesus and returned him to Pilate. Faced with an angry mob Pilateís decided to sacrifice one of his subjects rather than face an open rebellion. Pilate washed his hands of the matter, overlooked Roman law and conceded to wishes of the mob.
Neither Pilate nor Herod the Great wanted to abuse their authority to condemn someone to death without good reason. At the same time, the question about life is too important to wash your hands of it or compromise the truth. Pilate and Herod the Great merely took advantage of the situation to temporarily ignore the truth. Still the truth Jesus spoke about differed with the Roman and Hebrew law. From this situation we could deduct that truth is what we perceive of it and how it affects our personal life. However, in the trial of Jesus Christ, the truth was manipulated and everyone but Jesus appeared to smell like a rose.
From hindsight we can objectively see that Jesus Christ upset the established beliefs of the Jewish religion by working on the Sabbath and speaking of God as his father. The Pharisees saw Jesus as a man, the son of the carpenter whose mother was Mary. They also saw a Jewish rabbi who associated frequently with sinners. Christ did not live by the Levitical laws the Pharisees found acceptable, instead Christ revealed the true nature of Godís love. Jesus spoke a truth that undermined the Pharisees, which gave the Pharisees a determination to regain their rightful position as leaders of the established church of Christís day. The nature of government, religion, mankind and God collided at the Praetorium in Jerusalem, but when everything was said and done the truth was sacrificed on the cross of Calvary and resurrected three days later by a plan God designed before the beginning of time.
Everyone wants to know the truth and while truth is discernible, the truth does not openly proclaim itself as the truth. Therefore knowing how to ascertain the truth is important to the Christian because the truth can influence the way you live and how to overcome the lies of Satan. Like a sword, those who know how to use the word of truth will live another day in heaven, but those not interested in the truth are going to end up like trash in a very uncomfortable fire Ė either way the reality of truth will endure forever.
Today within the church there is a large number of doctrines that differ from one denomination to the next. In addition each church denomination has a main theme in which every doctrine of the bible is centered around. In the eyes of church leaders some churches are considered to be cults. We should all ask, what is truth, when every church worships God differently and considers their church the only scriptural church? What is the truth when eternal life has predetermined conditions that God and Jesus Christ have made known to man? Those who worship the God of creation must worship him in Spirit and in truth. Before men can live by the truth men must diligently seek the truth and determine with certainty what God wants you to know as truth.
When you look for advice from men donít you look at their character before you accept any advice from them? The fact is that most congregations are like sheep that blindly follows whatever the shepherd of the flock believes. God advises us to test all things, because in this world so many people are deceptive and truth is something that they expect from others, but only tell the truth when it is beneficial to their well being. This generation is especially deceptive and spends a considerable amount of their time devising plots to gain the upper hand. Their idea of success is anything goes as long as you win and in the process of winning, donít get caught.
In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit. Judges 17:6
Everyone did what was right in his own eyes because they had their own truth, Truth becomes a matter of convenience when people place God on the back burner or donít see a need for God. In addition, selfish people are too important and too busy to be concerned with friends or other people. On the other hand, Christians share a different view, as they are responsible to God to love one another.
Asa did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as his father David had done. 1 Kings 15:11
For Christians there is a noticeable difference between the people of Israel when they had no king and Christians that are guided by the King of Kings and the laws of God. Christians that have respect for God find out what pleases the Lord (Ephesians 5:10) and do the good works, which God prepared in advance for his children to do. The good works God requires of his children demand discipline combined with a change of heart to place limits on what they do.
Christians learn what God considers to be soon may not come to pass in his or her lifetime. One thing is especially noticeable about the thought life and the life span of thinking beings. Godís thought life is based on a life without an end and manís thought life is temporal based on less than a hundred years. God considers how his decisions may affect his life a hundred million years from now, where man may consider what his decisions may cause in a week from now. In other words, men think in temporal terms and God thinks in terms without time. Those in this world without god think in terms of right now and do what they consider right in their eyes, but Christians inherit eternal life and are expected to do what was right in the eyes of the Lord.
Christians need to consider that they will live forever and need to change their reasoning skills to adjust to eternal life. In heaven, plans for the immediate future will affect your life a hundred million years from now. Therefore, Christians must understand and face that their life will never end.
The truth of this world will fade away just as the flower withers and falls to the ground. In this world, man lives by the food that comes from the dust of the earth. However, the life of man is not dependent on the food grown by man, but by the word of God. Eternal life calls for absolute set of principles to live by and truth is a primary principle of life. The bible tells us that truth is forever,
The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever." Isaiah 40:8
According to the dictionary truth conforms to fact or actuality and free from deceit or distortion of fact. The bible also states that truth can be established and proven by a thorough examination the evidence.
"Every matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses." 2 Corinthians 13:1
The study of Godís word gives man the opportunity to gather the evidence and with meditation a prudent man takes the time to examine and consider the entire mass of evidence within his mind. Truth is always in harmony with facts and consistent with what actually happened.
Lies deceive because lies are presented as being as true statements with the intent to deceive or present the wrong impression. However, lies lack reliability and genuineness of a personís character. Lies are misleading, a diversion leading you to believe incorrect and unverifiable information. Deceptions contain enough truth to trick you into believing the lie, but truth reveals the accuracy of the matter and exposes the lie for what it is.
Godís word is described as the sword of the Spirit, because it is the only weapon in the Christian arsenal used to support to our beliefs and set the patterns of our life. Truth is the strongest weapon that the Christian has for spiritual warfare because truth overwhelms and exposes the deception of evil used by Satan. It quenches the fiery darts of the devil and when we submit to God by standing on his word rather than admit his deception Satan chooses to run for his life. Satan will challenge your knowledge of Godís word so reinforcing Godís word in your heart is done through memorization of his word.
Truth is unchangeable and described in the Bible as the rock of our salvation. When we look at the reliability, honesty, straightforwardness, sincerity, genuineness and the assurance of Godís word we find the very nature and character of God. The reason God does not change is that truth can not be changed.
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. James 1:17
The unchanging character and immutability of God are seen in Malachi 3:6, Hebrews 6:16-20 & Hebrews 7:21. The character of Jesus Christ is seen as -
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8
Christ spoke openly about his attribute of truth.
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6
God speaks of himself as a father who as strange as it may seem, wants to adopt you (a human being) into his family. The Bible also speaks of a God of love who desires a personal relationship with people like you. Personal relationships demand communication between two individuals and in the course of time both of you develop an intimate knowledge of the other person. Consider the following verses as it shows Jesus Christís personal involvement with his father.
For I did not speak of my own accord, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and how to say it. I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say." John 12:49-50
Christís devotion to his Father is without a doubt was greater than most Christians can understand. Still Christ subjected himself to the plan of God.
During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered Hebrews 5:7-8
In the verse above the reason for establishing a personal relationship with God the Father and with Jesus is emphasized. Jesus also said
Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. John 17:3
"If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him." John 14:7 Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. John 14:9
What happens to those who do not have a relationship with God?
"Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!' Matthew 7:23
The truth is very important for its accuracy and reliability. The knowledge of truth gives you the assurance that stabilizes your life by following ways that we know to be true. Living by the truth gives everyone that observes your life honor and respect and the dignity you desire.
Why is it important to know the truth? Your deeds create a by-product that God knows to be the truth about your life and God knows that your deeds are the reality, the truth of how everything in your life works. That is the reason you will receive an eternal reward according to your deeds.