The truth of the Lord

read-259169_640Psalm 117:2: For His lovingkindness is great towards us, And the truth of the LORD is everlasting. Praise the LORD!

Nobody has the right to privately define what truth is, to come up with his own variant of it. Peter wrote that no prophecy of scriptures is from anyone’s personal interpretation (1Peter 1:19-21). There should be no pseudo elite club of truth interpreters.

You do not give a twist to the words of the Bible based on your preferential interpretation, what you expect it to say or want it to say. Because it occurred to you does not mean that it is the truth. You should double check.

Realise that there is something called “rightly dividing the word of truth (2Timothy 2:15).” Therefore, we should beware of wrongly dividing it. Jesus accused the Pharisees of wrongly interpreting the Bible (John 5:39).

The devil got the duo of Adam and Eve to embrace an alternative to “truth.” They believed words opposite to the word of God to them, they embrace the “truth” of the devil which is lies, falsehood. The bought into a wrong interpretation of who God is, a wrong perspective of his acts, and they got into trouble.

David prayed: teach me your ways oh lord and I will walk in your truth (Psalm 86:11). There is his truth, which we should seek to know. There is one truth and that is Jesus. Whatever truth you claim to embrace that does not draw you closer to Jesus, makes you more like him, is suspect, because truth is beyond what you know it is about who you are, it is about becoming like the truth- Jesus. The teaching of truth is so that we might be built up into the fullness of the stature of Christ (Ephesians 4:11-16).

There are wrong lifestyle that are not in alignment with the word of God, and there are some wrong ideology that are contrary to the truth of the Lord. Jude and James were focused on the later, while Paul and John were focused on the former, in their writings.

Jude

Jude wrote against those who assume leadership in the church but have become licentious, lax when it come to the holiness standard of God. He said his readers needed to contend earnestly for the faith that was once delivered to the saint.

To contend, Jude said we need to build up ourselves on our most holy faith praying in the Holy Spirit. So when prayer becomes thin, your spiritual defence against the barrage of sinful lifestyle around becomes thin, then you are sucked in.

We also encouraged to prioritise fellowship with other believers so that we might stir each other to love and to good works (Hebrews 10:24-25). So the forces that pull people away from associating with the body of Christ, the church, is false “truth” and that serves to reduce our love for God and our behavioural sanctity.

When we embrace lies about the body of Christ, the church, and disassociate ourselves from it, we cut of ourselves from her and by extension from the head, from the supply which every joint is supposed to supply to us and we get to dry up.

When there is a particular lifestyle that does not glorify God that means there is a falsehood we have embraced. That is why one psalmist said that he has hid the word of God in his heart so that he will not sin against him (Psalm 119:9-11).

James

He made the famous remark about faith without works being dead, in his practical position about what is truth. He defined pure religion as keeping oneself uncorrupted from the world.

At the end, like Jude, he emphasised prayer, pointing at the life of Elijah as an example of someone who prays. While Jude says that when you pray its aids you in the life of righteousness, James said righteousness aids the effectiveness of your prayer.

The Bible says that God does not listen to the prayer of sinners (Psalm 66:18, Proverbs 28:9). We cannot continue in sin and then ask that grace should abound (Romans 6).

Paul

For Paul, knowing the right things is as important (if not more important) as doing the right thing. He has issues with the Galatian church who after he had preached to them, embraced a variant of the gospel, which is not really the gospel. They were being told that the blood of Jesus is not enough, and that they needed to also follow the Law of Moses.

He was livid; and told them if they reject the truth of Jesus alone as the source of salvation and they try to add something to it, then they are fallen from grace.

But he said we cannot claim to have grace and continue in sin because grace means identification with Christ which leads to victory over sin. But the path to grace is the right understanding.

He wrote about some people that they were ever learning but never coming to the knowledge of the truth (2Timothy 3:7).

Truth is not just what you do. You can do all the right things, but the Bible says that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23) and all need the grace that comes through Jesus, who is the truth. He called Jesus the wisdom and the power of God, adding that we are complete in him who is the head of all principalities and powers (Colossians 2:10). He wanted the people to know that, believe that, to know the truth of the Lord.

John

Paul focused on the mission of Jesus and how recognising it is key, that there is the need for us to have faith in him for salvation, and the right knowledge leads to the right faith. John was focused on the person of Jesus, saying that anyone who says that Jesus did not come in the flesh is a messenger of Satan.

He added that the one who does not hold to the soundness of the truth, about the person of Jesus, should be disfellowshipped (2John 1).

John said that we have an anointing from the holy one and we know all things. He wrote of the words of Jesus that the one who sees him has seen the Father, as John focused on his identity. He calls Jesus the Word of God. If you do not rightly identify the person of Jesus, you have under the influence of the antichrist, according to John.

Conclusion

James wrote of the practical implication of the truth of the Lord in good works that we do to help others, saying that we cannot say to those in need that they should go and be full when we have what it takes to meet their practical needs. He calls on the rich to exhibit piety by paying their labourers, he calls on us to ensure that we use our mouth rightly.

Jude warned of the negative influences of the wrong leaders, calling us to take heed to themselves to pray and contend for the truth, so we do not deny Jesus with our lifestyle.

John wants the person of Jesus to be clearly seen, while Paul wanted the mission of Jesus to be clearly understood. All in their own ways defended the truth of the Lord and calls us to do likewise.

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