What Is Truth?

Pilate asked Jesus that question at the Lord’s trial. Jesus had already given the answer in the previous verse: “For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37). Beforehand, Jesus made arguably His most famous statement that also was about truth: “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). There are two inferences we can make from Jesus’ words.

First, if we claim we are of the truth, that means we hear and obey the voice of Jesus. The voice of Jesus is much more than the “words in red” found in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Jesus’s voice is the entire New Testament, made up of all the men that the Holy Spirit inspired after Christ left the earth. Jesus’ purpose was to bear witness to the truth but not to write it all down for future generations. He has a job to do in Heaven after His resurrection. Today, He works as our High Priest, sitting at the right hand of the throne and interceding in our prayers to the Father (Hebrews 4:14). Jesus promised the 12 apostles that after He left the earth He would send the Spirit to guide them into all truth. “But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me” (John 15:26). The Holy Spirit did come upon the apostles and they began to teach the truth. Eventually, the Holy Spirit inspired them to write the gospel to be a testament to all people to the end of time. This is how the New Testament is the truth and the truth is Jesus Christ. If we wish to obey Jesus, then we must obey the New Testament.

Second, Jesus is the truth. We cannot expect to receive the blessings of God unless we accept Him and His Truth. The world encourages us to only accept the parts of the truth that we like or are convenient to us. There are some parts of the New Testament that are difficult to accept. Just like when we realize we have been believing a lie for a long while and we abruptly escape it, the truth can hurt. Sometimes, Bible passages about the importance of baptism (Mark 16:16) or Jesus’ commands about marriage and divorce (Matt. 19:9) can be truths that we have never heard before. However, the truth is still there, and we must accept it if we want access to the Father. The truth does not change to fit our desires just like Jesus does not change to fit our desires.

Paul speaks of those that changed the truth to match their desires in Galatians. By changing the message of Christ, they perverted the very gospel that could save them in its pure form.

“6 I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, 7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed” (Gal. 1:6-9).

Paul expresses the seriousness of manipulating the truth of the gospel. If only change one small part of the gospel then we have created a different gospel, a perverted gospel. Paul says that no has the authority to change Word of God. If men or even angels attempt to change the truth, Paul says let them be accursed, let them be condemned. To change the gospel or truth is an attempt to change Jesus. Alternatively, we can accept the truth and be set free from our sin and the entrapments of this world. “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32)

— Andrew Smith