Pilate said to him, “What is truth?” (John 18:38a)
In the 1950s and 1960s there was a popular game show called “To Tell The Truth”. The show featured a team of challengers which included a central character who had an unusual job or had experienced some unusual event. The central character was accompanied by two imposters. A panel of four celebrities asked questions of the challengers and from the answers would try to determine who was telling the truth (only the true character was sworn to tell the truth). Once the questioning was finished, each panelist voted for who they believed was telling the truth. At the end, the host would say “will the real [central character's name] please stand up”.
Truth doesn’t seem to be valued much any more. Webster’s defines truth as “conformity to fact or reality”. In a world of relativity, circumstantial absolutes, and perceptional reality, how can we know for certain what is truth?
Look to the One whose name is Truth.
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)
Federal agents don’t learn to spot counterfeit money by studying the counterfeits, they study the real thing. By learning what true currency looks like, they can recognize fake bills when they see them. Likewise, if we want to know what is truth, we must get to know the real thing.
Search God’s word for truth.
When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. (John 16:13)
Finding someone willing to give advice on whatever situation is seldom a problem. The life events and experiences shared by our brothers and sisters in Christ can help us through difficult times. But, we have to remember that God’s word is the final authority, the Holy Spirit is our great Counselor. We have to be careful to test the words of man against the word of God.
Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long. (Psalms 25:4-5)
After he had said this, he went back outside to the Jews and told them, “I find no guilt in him. (John 18:38)
We see in the above passages the words of two men seemingly seeking the same thing – truth. The Psalmist was willing to wait on God. He wanted to understand the ways of truth. He was eager to learn and to follow. Pilate asked the question, then walked away. Pilate understood that if he heard the truth, he would be responsible for it and as evidenced in Matthew 27:24, he wasn’t willing to accept it.
I was talking with someone recently about how noisy the world has become and how the noise of deception comes at us through all forms of media. Too often we allow the noise of lies to drown out the still small voice of truth; it doesn’t have to be that way. If we will only look to Him, search Him, and follow Him, we will know the truth.
Can I get a witness?