Life Reference: John 8:31-32, 43-45
“That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee” (Proverbs 22:21).
Before giving testimony in a legal proceeding, the witness is required to give an affirmation to tell “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” Some version of this wording can be found in the legal system of many countries. To tell less than the whole truth is perjury—lying.
Have you ever heard someone counter truth with a resolute “well, in my opinion . . .” or “I believe that . . .”? It’s as if they place their opinion above absolute truth. There is a danger in this, especially when we are speaking of the Word of God.
Why is “the whole truth” so important in our lives?
How does opinion compare to truth?
Satan Is the Father of Lies
From the very beginning Satan’s goal has been to twist and destroy truth. This is clear in his interaction with Eve in Genesis 3. By adding just one small word he changed truth into a lie. It was his nature to do this. John 8:44 says,
“Because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.”
We are constantly being warned of scams, which can sometimes dupe the intelligent as well as the gullible. A scam is a trick or swindle dressed up to sound like truth. It may be a legitimate-looking email, a phone call, or even a personal encounter, but the intent is to deceive and steal from us. It is important to learn how to distinguish between truth and a slick lie. An abundance of words stated with great passion does not necessarily mean something is true.
What are some of the current scams that are being used to deceive people?
Do you know someone who has fallen for one of these false schemes?
Why do you think they were deceived?
While we need to be careful with our personal business to make sure we are not taken in by some deceptive story, we must also be careful to recognize truth from falsehood in understanding God’s Word. We are warned of this in II Corinthians 11:13-15.
“For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”
How to Determine Truth
How do we determine if something is certain truth, an opinion, or deliberate deceit? We must ask ourselves a few questions.
- How reliable is the source?
- Does this align perfectly with the Word of God?
- Have I sought God for His direction and guidance on the matter?
A Look at Truth
John 17:17 – God’s Word is truth.
Psalm 117:2 – Truth is eternal.
John 8:32 – Truth sets us free.
Ephesians 6:14 – Truth is part of our armor.
John 4:24 – Worship and truth are joined together.
How do we distinguish between the truth and false doctrine?
Truth is not negotiable or open to discussion. When we become careless with truth, supplanting it with personal views and opinions, we are in effect aligning ourselves with the father of all deceit. We cannot allow ourselves to compromise truth. This not only endangers our own souls, it also jeopardizes the souls of our children and future generations. Our mandate is clear—embrace unadulterated truth and pass it on to the next generation.
“We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done . . . that the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children” (Psalm 78:4, 6).
What is our personal responsibility in imparting truth to the next generation?
Truth is unchanging and eternal. It is ours to cherish and pass on. Hold it tight.
Lord, give me the discernment to recognize truth and not be deceived by any of Satan’s tactics. Help me to embrace Your truth wholeheartedly and to make it my personal mission to pass it on to the generation which follows.
More Life with God References:
II Timothy 2:15
II Timothy 3:16-17
This Bible study was adapted from an article originally published in Reflections Magazine.