By: Scott Adkins, Sling ‘n Stone Ministry
Carter County Times
Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you a king?” Jesus answered, “I came into the world to bear witness to the truth, [and] everyone that is of the truth hears My voice.” (John 18:37). Pilate retorted: “What is truth?” Rather than wait for Jesus to answer, and maybe discover that Truth Incarnate and eternal life, i.e., The Lord Jesus Christ, stood just an arm’s length away, Pilate turned his back on The Lord and retreated to those demanding he crucify Jesus. (John 18:38). Like multitudes today, Pilate displayed callous contempt at the very notion truth even existed.
Pilate’s brief, yet momentous, encounter with The Lord presents one of history’s tragic ironies – one that repeats day after day in our own time, with eternal consequences. Day after day, truth confronts society by confronting individuals – individuals who, because they imagine their own truth, defiantly refuse to accept, or even to consider, that truth exists outside themselves. We see this, for example, in today’s deceived multitudes who defiantly define themselves via one (or more) of some eighty-one different gender identities.
But again, Pilate’s question: “What is truth?” God’s answer: “My Word ‘is truth,’” (John 17:17), and it never changes. (Isaiah 40:8). God’s unchanging truth says: “male and female made He them.” (Genesis 5:2). And no amount of human imagination can ever change that. Moreover, God’s Word says nothing good or comforting to those whose darkened imaginations conjure-up their own personal versions of truth.
For example, Deuteronomy 29:19-20 warns those who “walk in the imagination” of their own heart – that “[t]he Lord will not spare” them. That means suffering eternal hellfire. (Jude 7). Jeremiah 7:25 similarly speaks of those who reject God’s Word, saying they “hearkened not… but walked in the counsels and imagination of their evil heart.” Isaiah 5:1 warns, “Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes.”
Romans likewise warns about horrifying judgment against those “professing themselves wise[,]” who “suppress the truth in unrighteousness.” (Romans 1:19, 22). How do they “suppress the truth?” By living according to their own imaginations – damning lies that masquerade as truth. Romans so warns and condemns today’s chaos and debauchery that parades itself across every available platform. (Romans 1:23-32).
Like Pilate long ago, multitudes today reject God’s truth and live according to their own imaginations. And like Pilate, today’s multitudes tragically refuse to even consider our Lord’s eternally momentous question: “But Whom do you say that I am?” Peter proclaimed eternity’s soul-saving answer: “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” (Mark 8:29). Christ proclaimed, “I am… the truth.” (John 14:6). But if folks embrace their own imaginations and shun Christ – the only truth that exists – they “shall die in [their] sins,” (John 8:24), and wake-up in hell, like that poor rich man in Luke 16:23. We must lovingly, and unceasingly, proclaim God’s truth and “pull them out of the fire” of God’s impending judgment. (Jude 23). Our Lord so commands us. (Mark 16:15).