The Word of Truth
by Pastor E. Keith Hassell | January 1, 20172 Timothy 2:15-18 (NKJV) “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and idle babblings, for they will increase to more ungodliness. And their message will spread like cancer. Hymenaeus and Philetus are of this sort, who have strayed concerning the truth…”
What is truth? That question was of a Roman Governor named Pilate. Upon being questioned by Pilate during His trial, Jesus testified, “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. Pilate said to Him, ‘What is truth?’” (see John 18:37-38) Pilate’s question, “What is truth?” remains unanswered in many minds today.
We live in the midst of a post-modern era. We are continually subjected to a barrage of different versions of “truth” as “preached” by the news media, Hollywood, the music industry, politicians, religious sects, social media, books, magazines, radio, and television. It seems everyone is quick to share his or her opinion of truth and to label as intolerant anyone who challenges that opinion. To make things even more confusing, this world’s concept of truth is ever changing.
The post-modern mindset has no tolerance for absolutes. In fact, in the name of promoting tolerance for their own views, they have become intolerant of anyone who disagrees. The post-modern mindset has infiltrated our schools and universities and has subsequently filtered down to every other social order. It is now a part of our culture. According to post-modernism, there is no such thing as absolute truth. Truth is never certain or constant; it is something relative and ever changing. In the post-modern mind, truth is not determined by external standards but is determined by what a person feels to be true on the inside. For them, truth is found in self-discovery. It is truth based upon feelings and perceptions rather than facts.
The claim that there is no such thing as absolute truth is a self-defeating statement since it is itself an absolute statement. It might be asked of those who make this claim, “Are you absolutely certain that there is no such thing as absolute truth?” In contrast, absolute truth is not determined by feelings, experience, reason, or experiment. Absolute truth is fixed, constant, and unchanging. Absolute truth can only be discovered, not debated.
What is truth? Jesus came to bear witness of the truth—that God’s word is truth (John 17:17). God’s word is His gracious revelation of absolute truth to a fallen and depraved humanity who are at odds with the truth. God does not defend truth: He simply declares it. Without the light of truth, man would be hopelessly condemned to walk in spiritual darkness. People choose to either accept the truth by faith or to reject it altogether.
We discover absolute truth through reading and studying God’s word. Paul calls it “the word of truth.” Because God’s word is the revelation of truth, we must take heed how we hear it and handle it. We are to be “diligent” to present ourselves approved before God. How do we do this? We do so by living in the light of His word, by living according to “the word of truth.” If we do not make the word of God our final authority for truth, then we will fall prey to the “profane and idle babblings” of fallen and ever-changing philosophical reasoning of men who deny the truth. These twisted and fruitless ramblings only lead to more ungodliness and to a straying from the truth. That is why Paul exhorts us to “shun” or “stay away from” such things.
If we are to build on a lasting foundation, then we must build our lives upon the absolute authority of the word of God. His word is truth. God’s word not only contains truth, it is the truth. We must accept the word of God in its entirety or reject it all together. We cannot pick and choose what we want to believe. If the word of God is absolute truth, then we do not have the right to impose on it our own self-willed opinions. The word of truth is a precious gift from God. Let’s be faithful to study it diligently and to interpret it correctly so that we will not have reason to be ashamed when we stand before Him. Let us hold fast to the word of truth that alone can present us approved before God on that final day.
Prayer: “Heavenly Father, I thank You for Your precious gift of the word of truth, the Bible. I receive by faith Your word as truth. I make it the final authority in every area of my life. I thank You for this in Jesus’ name. Amen.”