The world, for the most part, tells us that truth is relative. What is true for you, may not be true for me, and that’s ok many say. So many believe that all paths lead to God or salvation. Whatever makes you feel fulfilled and happy go for it. I’ll do me and you do you and we will live in harmony.
As Christians, we believe this is false. There is only one way to salvation and God, and that is through Jesus Christ. He is the way, the truth, and the life, and no one comes to the Father except through him (John 14:6). God has also given us specific truths to believe and live by. These truths give us life and set us free. They protect us from danger and destruction.
Though as Christians some of these truths come easily and we would never deny them now that we are in Christ, there are some that are hard to understand and follow. We can get defeated, confused and left sometimes wondering if Jesus is truly good when some truths seem counterintuitive to our well-being or incongruent to being a loving person. At times it can be hard to replace the lies with the truth and believe the truth that God loves us, will never leave us, etc.
I have been in all of these positions and had these thoughts. We live in a very complex, complicated and noisy world. It is hard to navigate. In our struggle to know, believe, and live out the truth, we must start with this: look back to the Gospel.
The truth of the Gospel does not make sense and can seem too good to be true. The fact that God would send his son to die and take away our sins should blow our minds. We were enemies of God and God already had all the love he needed in the Trinity. He didn’t need us or created the world and humans because he was lonely or bored. But he wanted us to experience the love and joy he had with his son and the Holy Spirit. We were undeserving of it, but yet Christ paid it all for us.
The truth of the Gospel is also offensive and doesn’t feel good, at least at first. To be called a sinner and in need of a savior isn’t a pleasant sentiment. Naturally, we reject this. Until God reveals the peace and joy that comes from this knowledge, it will remain offensive and hard to hear.
Thus, looking at the Gospel, we can see that God’s truth often does not make sense, doesn’t feel good, seems offensive, and doesn’t feel good. If these are reactions we have about the truth of the Gospel, it is reasonable to say that these feelings would come from other truths God reveals in the bible. When we come across something that may not seem true because of any of these reasons, we must not immediately reject it. We must remember that we don’t have the ability to understand everything about God. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:8-9)
As Christians though because we have already believed in Jesus, shame and frustration can often come when we doubt and still have trouble believing the truth–about God and who we are in Christ. We must know we are in a spiritual battle because God warns us about this. “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against rulers, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Eph 6:12). Before we first believed in Jesus, there was pushback. We had to wrestle with God’s truth. A lot of us probably didn’t believe when we heard the Gospel for the first time. God had to slowly break down barriers until we couldn’t fight any longer, and we simply had to surrender. This process was really difficult for me, and I am sure I am not the only one. If this is the case for how we first wrestled with God’s truth, we shouldn’t be surprised when this happens in other situations. We don’t need to feel this sense of shame. God knows that we are weak and earthly creatures. God knows that, even after we were redeemed, we would sin against him and have doubts. Thankfully we can see that we don’t have to feel this angst and always have to struggle to believe God’s truth. Looking at our own journey of salvation, we can have faith that God can help us truly believe in any truth of the bible. Not only that, out of believing this truth, joy, and peace can abound. We can believe in God’s goodness and that he has our best interests in mind, even when that truth doesn’t make sense, is too good to be true, is offensive or doesn’t feel good. Truth often hurts in some way. It can break down our pride or show us that different lifestyles are ultimately not good for us. However, knowing the ultimate truth can be healing to the soul, and refreshing in a world where lies are constantly bombarding us and confusion is abound.
In my own life, I have had to seriously struggle with knowing and believing God’s truth. But through different life and personal experiences, God has revealed that he is ultimately the only one who knows what is best for me. Now, I am careful to really trust my own thoughts, even when they seem true to me. For “all the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirit” (Proverbs 16:2). God has brought me to places of desperation where certain decisions could possibly bring me pain and destruction to my life if I didn’t believe and follow God’s truth. By his crazy grace, God gave me full assurance that He would reveal the truth to me, and that I would believe it. Don’t rely on the world’s wisdom or what “seems” true without first going to God. Remove your bias, and pray deeply and he will reveal the truth, I promise. Be desperate to hear from Him, like your life depended on it. Study the scriptures, cry out to God for revelation. Know that Christ’s death would be worthless if he can’t or doesn’t desire to set you free and show you what is really true. God is fighting for you!
“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all–how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things” (Romans 8:32).