The Search for Truth
I grew up in Greenville, SC, with lots of Baptists, Methodists, and a few Presbyterians. My elementary school class included only one Catholic girl, whose family had relocated from somewhere up north. My only knowledge of Jews was my uncle in Charleston. So, moving to Kensington, MD, during my teens was eye-opening, because about 60% of Montgomery County was Jewish, 30% Catholic, and only 2% Baptist. Lots of my neighbors did not even attend church or temple. Now, my ‘international’ community includes worshippers of different ‘gods’. What is common among us is the search for ‘truth’. But, what is truth, and, if we have found it, how do we share it with others?
‘What is truth?’
- This was Pilate’s question of Jesus during his interrogation of Him on Good Friday morning. John 18.33-37 tells the story.
- Notice what Jesus said was His reason for being born and coming into this world, in verse 37.
- So, Jesus is the only ‘witness’ to the truth. What does a witness do?
- And, only people who listen to Him know the truth. See John 8.31-32.
- Why do you agree with Him, or not? Your ‘world’ wants to know!
- Those in your world are searching for truth, and you have it! Share Him!
Statue to the ‘Unknown God’
- Apostle Paul found this statue among the many others in Athens, Greece, on Mars Hill. Acts 17.16-31 tells the story, illustrating his assigned task from Jesus, in Acts 26.15-18.
- Acts 17.16-17 call to question what you observe between appointments or while waiting on your spouse or friends when away from home.
- The different statues characterize different ‘truths’, much like the complexity of our ‘international’ communities today. Verse 21 describes them.
- Paul ‘reasoned’ in synagogues, churches, and the marketplace ‘with those who happened to be there’. Isaiah 55.5 comes to mind.
- Verse 18 gives Paul’s ‘reasoning’; what point was he ‘reasoning’ listeners toward? Why was the resurrection of Jesus important to his point? Paul comments about this in Colossians 2.8-10 and Ephesians 4.11-16.
- Listen to Paul as you read his discussion in verses 22-31, and you will learn how the Holy Spirit leads truth-seekers to the absolute truth. Remember Matthew 10.19-20.
- Notice how He gathers diverse believers into ‘one man’ in verse 26 and gathers their various journeys as searches (‘groping’) for God in verse 27.
- Why do you agree with Paul or not in verse 30 that their journeys expressed ‘ignorance’? What is God’s ‘command’, and how does this include John the Baptist? See Mark 1.2-3. Hosea 4.6 and 1 Samuel 15.22-23 tells what happens to ignorant people. Are there animal sacrifices in pagan worship?
- If their ways are false, what does Paul say in verse 31 is the truth? This brings Hosea 14.9 to mind.
- Thus, God has ‘fixed a day on which He will judge the world’ against the standard of His right ways and by a His chosen Man, Whom the world cannot deny, because God ‘has given assurance to all by raising Him from the dead’!
Were all convinced? Verses 32-34 gives the answer that continues today. But, our ‘reasoning’ must be Hebrews 3.7-14. Praise God!!!
Copyright by Maurice Painter, 2012. www.sozoclass.com for more studies.