The first chapter of the Gospel of John states the Word became flesh and made his dwelling place among us...full of grace and truth.
Many of these posts have focused on grace,specifically in relationships. Truth, on the other hand, represents reality from God’s point of view. This includes the fact that God has standards and expectations, and that every person falls short of those. Truth is essential because it anchors the Gospel:
“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23
“The wages of sin is death, the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
If grace is sweet on the tongue, truth is a little hard to swallow. To the world, it seems so narrow minded, so arrogant. I find it ironic that the world wants to paint Jesus as meek and mild. A nice guy, a great moral teacher, even a prophet. Anything but who he says he is!
Regarding Jesus claims about who he is, C.S. Lewis concluded we must decide if Jesus is Lord, lunatic or liar! Who claims to be God's only begotten son but a lunatic- or God's only begotten son? Who claims to be the only way to heaven but a crazy man, or perhaps, the one who IS the only way to heaven!
"And the Word became flesh, and made his dwelling among us… full of grace and truth."
There is a true story of a battleship cruising the Atlantic off the northern coast of Maine one stormy evening:
The commander of the battleship was notified. "Sir, there's a light ahead. Oncoming vessel."
"Signal oncoming vessel, 'Change your course ten degrees to the west.'" The message was sent, but a light flashed back, "Change your course ten degrees to the east."
The commander barked, "Signal again, ‘Change your course ten degrees to the west. I am an admiral.'" The light flashed back. "Change your course ten degrees to the east. I'm a seaman third class."
By this time the admiral was incensed as he thundered, "Signal again, 'Change your course ten degrees to the west. I am a battleship.'" And the message came back, "Change your course ten degrees to the east. I am a lighthouse!"
Sometimes we act like admirals. We're the boss, we think. We want to create God in our own image, to imagine that He will grade on a curve, that He will keep up and accommodate our ever changing cultural norms. We believe we know better than God, what is fair and right.
The world shouts to God- “Change course, we are good people!”
To this way of thinking, Jesus shouts with authority- "You change course! I am the lighthouse."
Seventy nine times, Jesus is quoted in the Gospels as saying- “I tell you the truth." And the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us…full of grace and TRUTH. In our pursuit of grace, let us never neglect the truth.
“I am the way the truth and the life, no man comes to the Father but by me.” John 14:6
"For this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testfy to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me." Jesus to Pilate: John 18:37
“You shall know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”John 8:32