St John 18:37-38 ” . . . Jesus answered . . . To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice. Pilate sayeth unto him, What is truth?”
Pilate’s question is an important one: “What is truth?” I would also add to it these questions: “Why is truth so important?” and “How do I find truth?” My sources today are going to include more scripture than the Bible so if you have never read anything from the Book of Mormon or the Doctrine and Covenants, two books of scripture used by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, now is your chance!
Jacob, a Book of Mormon prophet that lived about 500 years before Pilate, gives one of the best definitions for truth. Jacob 4:13 says, “. . . for the spirit speaketh the truth and lieth not. Wherefore it speaketh of things as they really are, and of things as they really will be . . .” Then 1800 years after Pilate, Joseph Smith in the Doctrine and Covenants backs up Jacob in D&C 93:24 “And truth is knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come;”
1. What is Truth?
Think about something that you wish you had more knowledge about. It could be anything. Do you first think of lotto numbers or the stock market? What about unproven mathematical conjectures? Perhaps you want to know more about evolution, computer science, or global warming. What do women think about? How can I connect better with my spouse or teenager? Will I be with my spouse and children forever?
Now I ask you: if you knew the answers to these questions would it change things within you? Would it comfort you? Would it empower you to change things around you? One of the most powerful statements made in all of scripture about truth is something Jesus said in John 8:32 “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” As we gain more truth, we become more empowered and we are loosed from the captivity caused by ignorance.
2. Why is Truth so Important?
As we have already discussed, truth and freedom are connected. If you know truth, it can set you free. Truth also enables us to do God’s work. Consider D&C 50:17-20 “Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this question – unto what were ye ordained? To preach my gospel by the spirit, even the Comforter which was sent forth to teach the truth . . . And if it be by some other way it is not of God” God is very clear here that trying to do His work without the truth will not have His endorsement. I don’t think that is something any of us want. Finally, we also learn about God’s relationship with truth, light, and intelligence in D&C 93:36 which says: “The glory of God is intelligence, or, in other words, light and truth.” As you gain more truth and light, you gain intelligence or in other words, the glory of God.
3. How do I find Truth?
A lot of people look to science and mathematics for truth. All in all, they are not bad sources for truth. As a society, we have gained much through advances in science and maths. We have gained the truths we need to do such amazing things like fly, communicate nearly instantly across the globe, grow more food per acre than ever before, send probes to Mars, and provide some of the best help to people with physical and mental illnesses in history. But there is one method of discovering truth that is even better. Jesus said in John 15:26 “But when the comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me” What better source than the source of all truth? The prophet Moroni expands on this idea in Moroni 10:4-5 “. . . and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you by the power of the Holy Ghost. And by the power of the Holy Ghost, ye may know the truth of all things.” Do you really want to know the answers to the questions above? Ask God.
You should seriously consider what Moroni advises above so here is your challenge. First pick a question you have. A real question of your soul. This should be a question that has deep meaning to you that you have a strong desire to know the answer to. You need three things to get a promised answer:
- A sincere heart
- Real Intent
- Faith in Christ
You might have varying degrees of those things. I might explore them in more depth in another post but you can always research how to develop those things on your own. Now take the time to meditate and pray. Ask God your question. Take the time to listen, read scriptures, think about your question as you go about your day. God’s promise is that the truth will come.