“The Truth Will Set You Free!”
The Rev. Lou Tiscione, Pastor, Weatherford Presbyterian Church (PCA)
“Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”’
Free from what?” I can hear the rugged individualist’s response. “I am free! I can do whatever I want.” Indeed everyone can do whatever he or she wants to do. The problem is what he wants. God said that every inclination of man’s heart is only evil continually, Genesis 6:5. To understand our bondage, we must submit ourselves to the revealed truth of God. In so doing, Jesus said we will be set free. In order to submit to the truth, God must give eyes to see and ears to hear which He alone does by regenerating those whom He chooses.
Every time I open my Bible, I know that I am reading the truth only because God breathed life into me! The Psalmist wrote, “The sum of your word is truth, and every one of your righteous rules endures forever.” Psalm 119:160
Knowing objective truth, it is frustrating to hear the so-called news reports. Instead of news, we often get the latest spin on the news. We value commentary on events rather than the facts. We are more impressed by form and presentation than content. Politicians speak around the truth. The truth is used rather than told. Sadly, the evangelical church is often no better than the world in speaking the truth.
Yet, the fact remains, there is ultimate truth. God has revealed the truth. His creation reveals His divine attributes, power and majesty, Romans 1:19. He has revealed Himself in His word written and supremely in the person and work of Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life…” John 14:6. Apart from God’s special revelation leading to Jesus as He is offered in the gospel no one can: know God in an intimate and saving relationship, John 17:3, know ultimate truth or be set free.
God radically changes a sinner’s life and gives him or her eyes to see the truth. There is no other way to live that is free. God speaks truth. God is truth. No matter what men try to tell you, know that God is always telling you the truth. The freedom of which Jesus spoke is freedom from the bondage of sin.
All who know Jesus as He is offered in the gospel readily affirm what I’ve just written. When Jesus asked His disciples if they were considering deserting Him, Peter responded by saying, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” John 6:68.
There is no reason to sugar coat the truth. The fact is, unless a man or woman comes to acknowledge the truth, there is only eternal judgment in store for him or her. The natural man is in bondage to sin and deserves hell.
I’ve read that old time gospel preachers used to say, “God said it; I believe it; that settles it.” Here’s a more accurate statement, “God said it that settles it.”
There is something very imposing about the truth. It is what it is. No one can change it. In fact, it doesn’t matter if the truth is received and believed on the one hand. But, on the other hand, it matters for eternity. Man’s only reasonable response to the truth is to submit to it. Seeking to mitigate or spin the truth does dishonor to God and damage to the hearers. Likewise, we who are Christians should demand that our leaders speak the truth and live the truth.
Look at the Apostle Peter’s testimony. He stood before very powerful men and spoke without any mitigation or spin. Peter said, “There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12
Peter spoke the truth that must be known for all time. This is the truth that will set men free!
Here’s the unveiled truth in the words of Jesus, “Repent and believe in the gospel, “Mark 1:15. Knowing this truth is a gift from God. Knowing this truth leads to acting upon it. Knowing this truth ought to cause us to rejoice and be compelled to learn more of God’s truth in order to live in accordance with it.