Christ the Truth
Many people today say there is no such thing as absolute truth. The folly of such a statement, of course, is that if one believes it to be true, that very belief contradicts the statement itself! In this message, Billy Graham shows that the Bible has much to say about truth and that, as the Word of God, it can bring order to our tangled thinking and lead us to the One who claimed to be the truth Himself
Pilate asked the question, “What is truth?” (John 18:38). And many people today are asking, “What is truth?” Inside the Bible are stories of lust and hate and war and crime equal to anything else we read about in history. The Bible tells the truth-it tells the truth about God, about people and about the devil.
Jesus wasn’t afraid to call Satan what he is: a liar and the father of lies. Jesus said, “There is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it” (John 8:44).
The first time man had to make a choice between God’s truth and the devil’s lie, he chose the devil’s lie. The moment that Adam and Eve rejected God’s truth and accepted the devil’s lie, all of the world’s troubles began. Our sinful nature often sides with the devil’s lie instead of God’s truth, because we are sinners.
We’d rather believe the devil’s lie than God’s truth.
Sin is a disease that runs all through the human race. The disease of sin is at the heart of the troubles of the world. To those involved in this dying world, Satan will come with evil’s undiluted power to deceive, for they have refused the truth that could have saved them.
God sends upon them, therefore, the full force of evil’s delusion, so that they put their faith in an utter fraud and meet the inevitable judgment of all who have refused to believe the truth and who have made evil their playfellow (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12).
God says these people deliberately forfeited the truth of God and accepted a lie. God, therefore, handed them over to disgraceful passions (Romans 1:24-26). They see truth as a lie and the lie as the truth. They accept the lies of the devil. What are some of these lies?
First, there is the lie about sex. In Proverbs we read, “Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? Can one walk on hot coals, and his feet not be seared?” (Proverbs 6:27-28). That Scripture refers to lust. Lust means if you had the opportunity, you would commit immorality. Many people fantasize in their thinking, and lust that way.
Second, the devil lies about drugs. And it’s interesting that the words drugsandwitchcraftcome from the same root word in Greek–pharmakeia. Drugs are one of Satan’s great lies. He tells you that you will soar to heaven and have great, wonderful experiences. And every time you listen, you end up in trouble.
Third, there is the lie about religious hypocrisy. Millions of people attend church services without having a personal relationship with Christ. I used to be taken to church by my parents, and I hated church. But when I was a teenager, I received Christ as my Savior.
When I went back to church, I said to my parents, “The pastor certainly is preaching wonderful sermons.” They replied, “He’s preaching the same type of sermons, but you’re listening with different ears.”
Fourth, there’s the delusion that peace is just around the corner. It is not! There will not be peace in the world until the Prince of Peace comes.
We find deception, delusion and lies on every hand. What is the answer? What can people do?
Turn to the truth-turn to Christ. Jesus said, ‘You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). He said, “I am … the truth” (John 14:6). Jesus did not say, “You shall know a truth” or “anytruth” but “thetruth.” He’s the embodiment of all truth.
Jesus said, “If you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins” (John 8:24). If you don’t believe that and don’t accept Christ, you will die in your sins and you’ll be lost. Jesus Christ claimed to be ultimate truth. Are you willing to face the truth?
Jesus Christ told the truth about sin. He said, “Out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, and adulteries, and all other sins that we commit” (Cf. Matthew 15:19). War comes from the human heart. Family tensions and problems come from the human heart. Rebellion comes from the human heart.
He told the truth about love. God loves you. And He loves you with a love that you don’t know anything about, because there is no human love comparable to divine love. God’s love sent His Son to the cross to die and shed His blood for you. Then God raised Him from the dead, and He’s alive.
Jesus told the truth about judgment. He warned people to “flee the wrath of God” (Cf. Matthew 3:7). Yes, God is angry with the wicked. Jesus said, “Every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment” (Matthew 12:36). Every idle word, all your thoughts, all your words, everything you have ever done, will be at the judgment. And you will be condemned by your own words.
Jesus told the truth about repentance. He said, “Unless you repent, you will perish” (Cf. Luke 13:3). Have you repented? repentancemeans change. I change my mind about God, about myself, about my fellow man. I change my way of living. But on my own I don’t have strength to change. I can’t change. I can’t become a Christian. Why? Because I’m “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1).
God has to help me change. He has to help me repent. And I have to say, “O God, help me to repent.” Not only do we have to repent; by faith we must also receive Christ into our hearts as Savior and Lord.
Jesus told the truth about conversion. He said we have to be born from above, born again (John 3:3). The process is called conversion. Jesus said, “Unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3).
He’s not telling people to become like adults. He’s telling us to become like little children and have childlike faith. We come by simple faith, like a little child who trusts his mother and father. We put our total confidence in Jesus Christ by faith. Have you done that?
We also must obey Him. Live the life. Follow Him, serve Him, whatever the cost. And it is costly. In the world in which we live, if we hold on to Christian values and live up to the moral standards laid down by Christ, it will cost us. Obedience means following Christ, even to death. Are you willing to do that?
Before you come to Christ, you are a slave of sin. Christ’s truth makes you free-free from the penalty of sin. No other truth can free you so that you’ll never go to hell.
Christ’s truth provides freedom someday from the presence of sin, freedom now from the power of sin. Sin shall no longer have dominion over you, if you come to Christ and let Him change you. You can be free, right now, by coming to Christ.
Billy Graham has preached the Gospel to more people in live audiences than anyone else in history-over 215 million people in more than 185 countries and territories. Hundreds of millions more have been reached through the various ministries of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.