The arrival of Jesus brought the gospel message to mankind. The gospel message was the truth embodied in Jesus Christ.
“For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” John 1:17
Jesus’ predecessor, John the Baptist, gave witness to the truth of Christ. Jesus Himself proclaimed:
“There is another who bears witness of Me…and he has borne witness to the truth.” John 5:32-33
The appearance of the God/Man Jesus caused much enmity with the pious Jews who were hesitant to receive and embrace that which appeared to conflict with the Law of Moses. Some, however, listened and were given the gift to believe in Him.
“Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, ‘If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.’” John 8:31-32
And ‘free’ means liberated from the condemnation of sin.
Even His disciples displayed hesitancy about accepting Him and His teaching. Thomas questioned Jesus about the benefits of His leaving them.
“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’” John 14:6
It was explained to Thomas that the ‘truth’ was embodied in Jesus and the only way to approach God the Father was through Him.
Jesus continued by explaining that upon His departure to the Father, He would send in His place the Holy Spirit who was the truth and would dwell within them.
“However, when He, the Sprit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak…” John 16:13
Jesus’ return to the Father, followed by the Spirit entering the hearts of the disciples, was a major step in man’s unending odyssey on the way to eternity. The truth of God would abide with redeemed man forever.
Paul taught that those who chose to reject the truth revealed in Jesus and confirmed by the Spirit would suffer eternal consequences.
“…but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, (will reap) indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish…” Romans 2:8-9
Paul reiterated the consequences of disobeying the truth revealed in Christ to the church at Galatia.
“O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified.” Galatians 3:1
The Galatians were without excuse. They had witnessed first hand the work and death of Christ.
To the church at Ephesus Paul metaphorically portrayed that the defense against falsehood begins with the truth.
“Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth…” Ephesians 6:14a
And Peter proclaimed that Christians, having received the truth, should reflect such grace by loving the brothers.
“Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart.” 1 Peter 1:22
If God is truth, what about that which is any other?
As would be expected the antonym for the Greek ‘truth’ aletheia is pseudos which means falsehood, i.e. lies.
The unbelieving Jews, represented by the Pharisees, would not accept Jesus’ teaching on the truth. Jesus boldly told them who their father was.
“Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word. You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He…does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” John 8:43-44
Thus, the two divisions of all mankind: either one stands in the truth, or one embraces the lie. While man is born innately in sin to lie, God is truth and can impart that truth to repentant man.
The devil is the father of lies and whoever does not choose the truth of God will die and spend eternity in the lake of fire with his father the devil.
Check out Walt’s latest book entitled: God’s Plan for His Chosen: The Cost and the Conflict.