What IS Truth?
Have you ever thought about that question? Many times, we seem to throw the word around…using it vaguely, loosely…and often confusing it with its distant cousin “fact.”
You see, I don’t believe fact and truth are exactly synonymous. Related, perhaps…but also very different in nature.
I don’t know about you, but when I hear “fact,” I am immediately thinking in terms of systematic analysis. I think of someone collecting data such as times, dates, or places; empirical evidence, measurements, observation. I think of conducting scientific testing in order to prove or disprove a theory.
Can collecting, observing and analyzing facts lead one to the truth? Absolutely! Is it good to search, explore, observe, test, and draw conclusions? I believe so.
However, Truth was already there. Truth doesn’t change, and in my understanding undergirds all of reality. Truth is what is, what always was, and what remains when there is nothing else around, nothing impeding or distracting.
Yet, that definition is a bit too philosophical and abstract. Human beings couldn’t seem to grasp the concept of Truth and what is meant for the their lives, so God sent Truth in the form of flesh.
The gospel of John 1:1-3 tells us, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.”
Then, in verse 14 we hear, “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling 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.”
In our current sermon series at Christ Church, Disarming the Darkness, we are discussing the full armor of God as described by Paul in Ephesians 6:10-20. Last week, we focused on Truth and discussed wearing “the belt of Truth.“
But what on earth does that mean? When I think of belt, I don’t generally associate it with anything grandiose…like Truth. Do you?
What is this belt? Is it an accessory? Is it functional? Does it have special powers?
Paul, writing from prison, is literally chained to a Roman soldier day and night. He uses the imagery of a Roman solider’s armor, because it provides the perfect visual for the audience of his time. He uses the armor imagery to teach us, not about battles of the flesh, but about how to prepare for the spiritual battles this life will entail.
The belt used by Roman soldiers was the piece of equipment that held their tunic in place and functionally provided freedom of movement. The soldier was free to move because the belt held all other things in place.
In the same way, wearing the belt of Truth, that is Jesus Christ, allows us all to move about freely, knowing that the Truth is keeping everything in place. But, we have to choose to put it on…daily…or we will not only leave ourselves vulnerable to the enemy’s attacks, but will often become stuck and unable to move. We lose our freedom and become enslaved.
This it our choice to make each day.
Back to the gospel of John, jumping down to chapter 14, verse 6 we hear from Jesus himself who declares, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the life…”
Jesus was telling us how to find Truth in this crazy world. He was telling us how to find his Father. He was showing us, through his very life, what Truth looks like and gave us the secrets of his Kingdom.
Yet, we often are tempted to look elsewhere for Truth. We forget to put on that belt every day and instead choose other accessories: worldliness, anger, consumerism, pride, ego, our own abilities, etc.
We have difficulty believing that Truth really could have been revealed in the person of Jesus Christ, but easily accept the most current financial advice from “experts,” the lie that we really can have it all/be it all; and we so easily take the bait of Satan’s lies.
Then, one day when we realize the world does not really have any lasting Truth, we are left lonely, confused and frustrated. We are left…oddly enough…still searching for Truth.
Where do you find yourself in these verses? Fully armored, partially armored, or refusing to believe there a spiritual war raging on and therefore you don’t need this belt or anything else?
These verse in scripture remind us to adjust our vision a little bit. To look beyond the flesh and see the powers and principalities that are currently at war. To wake up every day, knowing that a mighty warrior is on our side; the Prince of Peace…buckled around our waist…
Have you ever wondered what Truth is? Have you ever thought about Jesus Christ being the Truth? Do you struggle to believe this? What does Truth mean to you?