Richard Nixon once said: “Let us begin by committing ourselves to the truth to see it like it is, and tell it like it is, to find the truth, to speak the truth, and to live the truth”. Although the context in which this statement was uttered may have been different, the depth and realism that these words imply cannot be overlooked.
From among those who followed Jesus, two categories of individuals are alluded to in this passage: believers and unbelievers. Even though Jesus was addressing a doctrinal error, some of his followers were still skeptical. Jesus had ongoing conversations with his followers and needed to clarify the criteria for being a disciple so that they didn't get things jumbled up. He highlighted the importance of his disciples' adherence to his teachings.
Unfortunately, some Christians have not fully accepted the Truth that Christ has delivered to the world. Some have mixed it in with their religious beliefs, hesitant to give up their father's beliefs or family traditions that oppose the gospel. Others continue to compare God's standards to man's norms. Jesus was reminding his people of the truth in this chapter of scripture. Because he is Truth, he defines truth. It cannot exist without him.
When we accept Jesus, he lovingly guides us into what is liberating. He frees us from the shackles of sin and our sinful tendencies. This freedom that Jesus gives his followers allows them to follow him without reservation, from a place of encounter, truth, and love. This is especially made possible because he sent his Holy Spirit to empower his followers.
Jesus, like his disciples, is presenting us with a golden key to Freedom: himself. Will you embrace him today?
Heavenly Father, in a world where there are many definitions of truth, guide me by your Holy Spirit to discern the Truth that will guide me into living a life of freedom and victory in Jesus Christ.
Throughout the Day: If you've ever battled to tell what is true from what isn't, don't despair. Turn to the Holy Spirit, who is our ally. Allow him to lead you to the truth.
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