by Erin D. Schultz
During this period of oppressive restrictions, almost everyone is hungry for a healthy dose of freedom. Jesus’ famous advice especially applies today: “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:34).1
There is great freedom in always living and speaking the truth. In contrast, if we live a life where lying is normal, subterfuge and confusion keep us confined. We might forget what story we told which person and then get caught in our lying, causing others to not trust us. It is difficult, maybe impossible, to regain trust that’s been lost.
“They all fool and defraud each other; no one tells the truth. With practiced tongues they tell lies; they wear themselves out with all their sinning” (Jeremiah 9:5). “The LORD detests lying lips, but he delights in those who tell the truth” (Proverbs 12:22).
“Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see — such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him. He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together” (Colossians 1:15-17).
Does He know something about truth? Absolutely.
Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). He can help us lead a life of truth, freedom, and peace. He paid for our sin with His life. Through the help of His Holy Spirit we can live a life that makes a difference in the world. As humans, we are spirit, soul, and body. Therefore, we are transformed in our very core when we turn our lives over to Him through salvation. Helping others find this degree of freedom by telling them about what Jesus did for them will bring blessings into their lives too.
As we read God’s Word, we learn more about Him and His expectations. This helps us choose the right way to go in every situation. His Word always tells the truth, because He never lies (Isaiah 45:23). Our Bible can be trusted to guide, encourage, strengthen, renew, instruct, correct, cleanse, and show us the plans He has for us.
God’s plan for us is always good. He knows us far better than we know ourselves. God will use us in His kingdom, through the gifts He gives us, to lead others to follow Him; giving hope to the weary or weak, strengthening and empowering us to do what He has designed. This can display in our lives in many ways: church ministry, music, art, writing, acting, organizing, teaching, and leading. His Spirit clearly shows us His ways so we can live according to His Truth (Psalm 86:11).
God expects us to grow through reading His Word, attendance at church, spending time with Him in prayer, fellowship with other believers, and encouraging one another. All these things will help us grow strong in our faith and not be influenced by people who perpetuate lies which sound like the truth. If we know the truth in God’s Word, we will not be hoodwinked when we hear a lie, or allow ourselves to drift away from God’s truth (Hebrews 2:1; 2 Timothy 3:16-17).
“Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church” (Ephesians 4:14-15).
Living in truth with ourselves and everyone else opens the door to genuine freedom, where a clear conscience is the standard. Committing ourselves to truth is not restrictive. It’s the place where God’s infinite wisdom and power are not denied; they are fully enabled in our everyday lives.
In this condition, we can genuinely help others as God helps us — according to His way, His truth, and His life.
1 All scriptures cited here are from the New Living Translation.