By Dr. John A. Temple / Guest columnist
The Meridian Star
“Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, "If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
— John 8:31-32 (NKJV)
Manti Teo and Hillary Clinton have one thing in common. They are being questioned about telling the truth. As far back as President Nixon and Watergate, we have looked for lies. In our society there are many crimes and moral issues that we will tolerate, but lying is not one of them.
Personally, I don’t wish to tolerate lying. The Bible encourages us to not bear false witness (Exodus 20:16). Telling the truth should be basic to the integrity all must have. But, the question is, “How do you know when you have the truth?”
In seeking “truth,” our society usually conducts some interview with the person in question to see if “truth” can be identified. As questions are asked, the answers and body language of the person are subjectively evaluated by observers to determine if we believe the truth has been told. Usually, some think truth has been given and others have their doubts. Rarely has the interview settled the issue of truth.
A common opinion about truth in our society is that “truth is what is true to you.” We think truth is subjective. We rarely consider truth to be absolute. With careful wording, we can “bend the truth.” We also feel like we can reject what seems to be truth to someone else.
There can be but one truth. Truth is something that is real; something consistent; something factual. Real truth is absolute.
For the Christian, the real, consistent, factual, absolute basis for truth is found in the words and life of Jesus. In the life of Jesus, I understand who God is. He is a God of love. In the words of Christ, I understand the truth about relationships. I am to love, forgive and serve others to make my world a better place to live.
I may not know the truth about other people, but I can know the truth about life in Christ. Furthermore, when I have that knowledge, I don’t need to keep analyzing and questioning about reality.
I can have peace that whether or not Manti knew his make believe girlfriend was real or whether or not Hillary couched the truth my truth is solid. It is based on the life and witness of One who surrendered everything, even His life, just so He could teach me the truth about life.
Dr. John A. Temple is pastor of Poplar Springs Drive Baptist Church, located at 4032 Poplar Springs Drive in Meridian. Visit the church website online at www. psdbc.org.