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Proclaiming Truth that Liberates and Protects


 “The truth that makes men free is for the most part the truth which men prefer not to hear.” American journalist Herbert Sebastien Agar  1897-1980

 

Kingdomstreams’ logo since its inception has been “Proclaiming truth that liberates and protects”. All truth if embraced as it is and not as we wish it was liberates and protects. As C.S Lewis once stated, "In coming to understand anything we are rejecting the facts as they are for us in favor of the facts as they are."

 

I could wish the process of discovering and embracing truth were easier. But 68 years later in life, my observation and experience is it is not embraced without a fight. Truth is wonderfully transforming. But it is also quite illusive. Because of our sin nature and this evil world system in which we live and because of the father of lies and his lying demons swirling around us truth is often hard to see, hard to hear and hard to heed.

 

So I want to talk about truth for a while. And since everything rises or falls with our knowledge of God I want to start there. And I will be mainly drawing from the New Testament in this series.

 

Any discussion of truth must start with the fact that our triune God is utterly true.

The first statement to that effect in the New Testament is surprisingly made by some disciples of the Pharisees and some Herodians about Jesus, whom they hoped to trap in some statement they could use against Him, “….Teacher, we know that You are truthful and teach the way of God in truth, and defer to no one; for You are not partial to any.” Matthew 22:16 (cf. Mark 12:14 & Luke 20:21). Anyone who observed Jesus’s earthly life and ministry for any decent length of time had to admit no falsehood or deception could be found in His life or His words.

 

John proclaims Christ as not just any light, but the true light, “There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man.” John 1:9

In John 3:33 John states, “He who has received His (Jesus’s) testimony has set his seal to this, that God is true.”

 

Later in John’s gospel, Jesus Himself states one of the reasons why He should be perceived or known as true, “He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who is seeking the glory of the One who sent Him, He is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.” John 7:18 This zeal for God’s glory and refusal to seek His own is one of many things that demonstrates that Jesus is indeed God and indeed true. What man or woman in history other than Jesus could have had the adoring crowds He did and not once for a millisecond seek His own glory?

 

In John 7:28, Jesus testifies that the God who sent Him to the earth is true, “Then Jesus cried out in the temple, teaching and saying, "You both know Me and know where I am from; and I have not come of Myself, but He who sent Me is true, whom you do not know.”

 

One of the things I so appreciate about Jesus’s earthly ministry was how patiently He tried to reason with His enemies and opponents - often appealing to God’s nature as among other things true, “"I have many things to speak and to judge concerning you, but He who sent Me is true; and the things which I heard from Him, these I speak to the world." - John 8:26

In a world full of deception and lies, only a God who is utterly true can be trusted.

 

Jesus spoke of His unity and oneness and equality with this true God in various ways, such as the true vine working with the vinedresser in John 15:1, “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.”

 

In our next passage Jesus defines eternal life as knowing the one true God, and again He speaks of His eternal relationship with this God, "This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” - John 17:3 Our one true God would never send someone other than Himself to this sin stained earth because only One who is utterly true can penetrate the web of lies the father of lies has spun in the world he rules.


The apostle Paul, in trying to explain how God's purposes with Israel have not failed and will be fulfilled exclaimed, "May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, "THAT YOU MAY BE JUSTIFIED IN YOUR WORDS, AND PREVAIL WHEN YOU ARE JUDGED." - Romans 3:4


One of the ways we see the power of the gospel at work is when people, whether Jews or Gentiles, turn from their idols to worship and serve the one true God. Paul affirmed the Thessalonians for such, "For they themselves report about us what kind of a reception we had with you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve a living and true God, - 1Thessalonians 1:9

 

As wonderful as this one true God is, we could have never come to know Him apart from Him sending His Son to explain Him and to satisfy divine wrath and divine justice by His suffering and death and shed blood. John speaks to this in his first epistle, “And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.” - 1John 5:20

 

While Jesus satisfied divine justice by His atoning death, He has not yet executed justice on all of His enemies on the earth. One of the fascinating inside windows we get in the book of Revelation into things we couldn’t otherwise see is how there is a universal groan among disciples of Jesus who were martyred as to when their brutal and murderous deaths will be avenged. Let’s listen in, “When the Lamb broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who h?ad been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained; and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, "How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth" - Revelation 6:9,10   Knowing Him as true helped them both trust Him and hold Him to His word and promise.

 

And knowing Him as utterly true will help you navigate this earthly life in an increasingly victorious way. We will wrestle with truth some more Lord willing in my next post. Your prayers are always appreciated that Anne and I will hear and heed God’s truth before we seek to proclaim it. I pray for you readers, whoever and wherever you are regularly. (God knows who you are and where you are).

May the Holy Spirit bless you with an ever greater theological and experiential knowledge of our one true Triune God!

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