Pilate’s question of Jesus, “What is truth?” is the norm of today in our society. We live in a relativistic world. “No” sometimes means “No,” maybe, possibly, but not certainly. “Yes” may mean “Yes, perhaps, unless I mean no.” And, we certainly do not know what the meaning of “Is” is. Therefore, truth is what we believe the truth is.
May I ask, “Are we, as human beings, really that dumb?” Do we really not know what “yes” and “no” mean? Are we really confused over right and wrong? Is truth really relative? We know better. Our problem ascertaining whether truth is absolute or relative is not intellectual but moral. We, as people, do not like to be told there are some things that are absolutely right and wrong. Why? Because we want to do what we want to do. We don’t want anyone telling us what we can or cannot do. God forbid that we should point out sin. If there really is such a thing as sin, then there really is such a thing as an absolute right and wrong, which means there is such a thing as an absolute standard: truth.
The problem of understanding absolute truth is not new to our day. Isaiah spoke of the same thing. “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” (Isa. 5:20). Why did the people of Isaiah’s day confuse right and wrong? “Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, And prudent in their own sight!” (Isa. 5:21). That is the problem today as well. The problem is not “is truth absolute,” but whether we in our eyes see it as absolute. In our pride, we want to do other than what God commands, therefore, truth becomes relative. We allow our pride to determine what is right and wrong, not God.
In order to correct this problem we need to understand truth is the standard by which all knowledge is ascertained whether it be in the field of law, science, medicine, or religion. Truth is the standard. When we go to the store to buy a pound of meat, we are confident it has been correctly weighed. What gives us that confidence? A standard of weights and measures: truth. We recognize the importance of truth in every area of our lives until it comes to religion.
Once we recognize truth as the standard for all knowledge, we must admit that absolute truth must have a source. Truth is absolute because it comes from a Sovereign God. Sovereign means above or superior to all others, chief, greatest, supreme. We can’t get any higher on the scale of government than God. When we say God is sovereign, we include the idea that His authority is inherent because of who He is and what He has done. It is His by right of creation. That is what makes the Gentiles behavior so sad. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie…. (Rom. 1:25). They exchanged the sovereign God and His authority for their own standard. What did they do? They committed the vilest acts known to man (Rom. 1:26-32). Do you see why admitting truth to be absolute is a moral problem not an intellectual problem? They did what they wanted to do, but they could not do that and admit there is truth. Why? To admit there is truth is an admission there is a God, and by right of creation He has the right to tell me what to do. We cannot get more fundamental than thinking truth is absolute because it comes from a Sovereign God. Once we understand God is Creator that says something about His power, wisdom, greatness, excellence, kindness and majesty. Who am I? Nobody! What can I do against Him? Nothing! Who shall I go to for counsel? No one. But, look, He holds our very lives in His hand. He has the right to rule our lives. He gives absolute truth (Rom. 11:34-36). Truth is woven into the fabric of our universe. It is ordained and sustained by God. We can disregard truth, but we cannot destroy it; it is indestructible. When men change the image of an incorruptible God into the form of man we have a god we make in our image, that fits what we want to do. If our god is one we can carry in our pocket, then we are never wrong, are we? Truth is what we make it.
Furthermore, our Sovereign God has not left us to wonder what truth really is. He has revealed what He wants for us to please Him. Truth has been made known to man. However, it takes a special kind of heart to see that truth is absolute. Not everyone will because not everyone wants to. Not only do we owe God a debt of gratitude and service, we must listen to Him. His word is truth (Jhn. 17:17). Scripture contains truth that God breathed (2Tim.3:16-17). Each word is from the mind of God (1 Cor. 2:11-13). No man could have imagined the truth God revealed. Only our Sovereign God could have produced truth because He is truth (Jhn. 14:6). He produced the truth in such a manner that man can know the truth (Jhn. 7:17). It is able to set him free (Jhn. 8:32). Our problem is, “We have lied to ourselves, that we know the truth, until we have crippled our hope of learning the truth. Or, we have convinced ourselves (another lie) that there is no certain truth, so that even faith becomes a leap in the dark, an essential to avoid despair, or maybe truth (?) is treated subjectively, every man to himself. We know that truth in the material universe is not so vacillating: 2+2 = 4 to all men; God is different” ( Plain Talk 16:3: May 1979).
Finally, truth, by it’s very nature is singular. Truth is intolerant and exclusive. It is not subject to arbitration nor subjective appraisals. That which is truth is real and genuine. The truth is not some philosophical extraction which is reached by the reasoning of the human mind. Truth is not relative to time, change or feeling. Truth is without exception or exemption. It is not subject to recounts, no hanging or pregnant chads. It is not subject to a Presidential veto, congressional approval or a ruling by the Supreme Court. It is the standard by which all else is measured. It is objective. God has revealed truth. Our challenge is to search and find it.
by Rickie Jenkins