About Jesus - Steve (Stephen) Sweetman

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What Is Truth?  


One thought-provoking issue that has plagued humanity throughout history, and still plagues us today, was raised by Pilate as he interrogated Jesus.  Read John 18:38.

"'What is truth?' retorted Pilate. With this he went out again to the Jews gathered there and said, 'I find no basis for a charge against him.'"


Jesus told Pilate that anyone on the side of truth listens to Him (John 18:37).  I'm not sure Pilate cared about being on the side of truth.  He didn't seem to want to listen to Jesus after asking Him what is truth, as the above NIV's interpretive translation of the Greek word "lego" into the English word "retorted" implies. 


Pilate just left the room, not giving Jesus time to answer his question.  Yes, Pilate had lots on his mind, but I don't think he cared about truth, especially Jesus' version of truth.  "What is truth" was probably more of a statement than a question needing an answer, as in, "no one knows what truth is, and I don't care to know." 


Pilate was fed up with the whole ordeal over the arrest of Jesus.  He was in a political quandary over a Jewish religious issue he cared nothing for and now Jesus was philosophizing about truth.  Being angry and frustrated, Pilate was in no mood to philosophize.  Of course, Jesus wasn't being philosophical.  If given the chance, He might have told Pilate that truth is not a matter of philosophy.  It's a matter of Him being the ultimate universal truth (John 14:6). 


Fast forwarding to today, our western-world's view of truth is transitory in nature.  It varies from person to person, from place to place, and from time to time.  We invent our own version of truth to suit our self-centered interests that we propagate via social media, artificial intelligence, conspiracy theories, and more.  Like Pilate, it leaves many shaking their heads in frustration and raising their hands in despair.  Not knowing truth from fiction, they turn to a hedonistic life, living for today lest tomorrow they die.   


As this age ends, discerning truth from a lie is a very relevant issue.  Read 2 Thessalonians 2:9 through 11.


"The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works.  He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing.  They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.  For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie."


The day will come, if it has not already arrived, when Satan will deceive the masses with the lie, whatever "the lie" is.  This is made possible because the masses refuse to love truth.  At that point, God steps into the satanic inspired situation by implanting a spirit of delusion among the masses that aids them to trust the satanic lie.  It's like what Paul described in Romans 1.  When a people consistently exchange the truth for a lie, God will hand that people over to their self-destructing lie. 


All of this looks presently familiar to me.  Inventing truth that suits one's self-centered causes is now the norm throughout our culture, including Christian culture, a term that has lost its original meaning, as seen in the term "Christian nationalism."   I conclude that Pilate's question is more relevant today than ever.  I agree with Jesus when He said that "anyone who is on the side of truth listens to me." 


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