“WHAT IS TRUTH?”
Jesus is standing before Pontius Pilate. Pilate asks Jesus, “What is truth?” Pilate undoubtedly asked himself that same question before, “What is truth?” It was the wrong question. The question should have been, “WHO is truth?” Pilate didn’t know that truth is a person. Imagine. Here is a man looking Truth in the eye and asking Truth, “What is truth?” I once had a similar experience.
I was searching for truth, and I mean, desperately. Something in this world had to make sense. Surely there was more to life than this. Life seemed so futile, barren. What’s it all about? What’s the purpose of it all? I ached to know truth.
One Sunday morning I was at mass (I used to be a catholic) with my wife and small children. It was boring as usual and my eyes wandered. I was staring at the crucifix at the front of the church behind the altar (a crucifix is an image of Jesus hanging on a cross) when the Holy Spirit came upon me. I was transfixed, staring at the image of Jesus, tears streaming down my face, and the Spirit of God spoke to me, “Don’t you GET it?” And I replied, “No, I don’t get it.” Like Pilate, I was staring at Truth (an image of Jesus) and didn’t recognize this was the truth my heart ached for. “Don’t you GET it?” that voice spoke inside me again and again. My answer was the same, “No, I don’t get it. I don’t understand.” And then I said, “Don’t give up on me, God! Don’t give up on me!” I was afraid God would run out of patience, and I knew I needed Him to find truth. The experience passed, but God never gave up on me.
Shortly thereafter I was handed a tract, The Four Spiritual Laws, pointing to Christ. “THE HOLY SPIRIT TOLD ME TO GIVE THIS TO LARRY,” the person said, singling me out of the group. Wow!….. that was something I never heard before. Maybe now I will find truth.
But the tract only spoke of Jesus. This was nothing new! I heard about Jesus all of my life! I concluded that God was toying with my emotions, and I became as bitter as vinegar. I flew into a rage and called God dirty names. I wanted truth so desperately, and He was playing games with me. He was mean and spiteful and I hated Him! “And I will never repent!” I yelled at Him, and I turned my back on him. Forever.
Forever was less than a day. The Spirit of God kept saying, “Give Jesus a chance. Give Jesus a chance.” Could Jesus really be the truth I was hungering for? “Okay,” I thought. I was miserable, and anything had to be better than this.
So I committed my life to Jesus. I gave myself to Him the best I could. But that wasn’t enough. The Spirit seemed to say, “Now RECEIVE Jesus.” So I did. I received Him as my Lord and Savior, and that was the turning point of my life. That was February, 1972. I was born again that day, “born of the Spirit” just like Jesus taught.
I learned that knowing ABOUT the truth isn’t the same as KNOWING the truth. I knew ABOUT Jesus, how He was born of a virgin and went to the cross to pay for man’s sins. But I never knew Him personally. I was not His disciple. I had never RECEIVED Him.
I searched for truth because I wanted it. Searching for truth is really a search for Jesus. God says in the Bible, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Pilate would have found truth (Truth) if only he wanted it enough.