I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
3 John 8 (NIV, 1978)
The Biblical concept of truth was never intended to be open to random interpretation. In fact, the Apostle John drives that point home—with a sledgehammer!
In John 8:31-32, Jesus declares that to be a disciple, one must follow His teachings and, in doing so, they will come to know the truth. That same truth will set us free. Later, just before he is arrested, Jesus tells His disciples that He is “the way and the truth and the life” and that He is the only avenue by which anyone can approach God the Father.
Early the next morning, Jesus stands before Pilate—only hours from the Cross—and John records His words, “I came into the world to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.” The perplexed Roman leader responds, “What is truth?” and walks away.
Willingness to hear, see, and walk in the truth found in Jesus has always been the determining factor of true faith.
A recent President once made the bold declaration, “America is no longer a Christian nation,” much to the chagrin of American believers. While his words may have been purely in reference to statistical data reflecting current religious preferences or labels, I would still have to agree with the basic truth of his statement. A Christian nation is not determined by its political leanings—conservative or liberal —nor is it identified by the number of steeples on the skylines of its largest cities. A nation’s spiritual condition is reflected by the degree to which its citizens embrace, stand and walk in the truth of what has been established in the Word of God.
I love to reflect on our Christian heritage, don’t you? It just makes sense that God would bless those who sought freedom founded upon the truth of the Bible. The foundation might have been laid, but years of slowly abandoning even the most basic of the “self-evident” truths proclaimed in our constitution have led us to the place where both the right to be born and the status of gender is open to the random interpretation that I mentioned earlier.
Be encouraged! This devotion is not a lament over the status of God’s truth in the halls of power. In John’s day, the church endured great persecution and many left the faith to pursue a path of lesser persecution and commitment. However, many believers continued to walk in the truth he had proclaimed. John, in his little Epistle near the end of the Bible, found his greatest joy in watching their faith. We—that’s you and me–are the result of their devotion.
So, these words are intended to be a reminder that no one can diminish or control our effort to bring joy to our Father as we continue to walk in His truth though there be few that walk with us.