Copyright ©2018 Keith Holder, Rays of Light Bible Lessons. All Rights Reserved.

Rays of Light Bible Lessons by Keith Holder

THE TRUTH OF THE GOSPEL

Colossians 1:3-5 We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, for the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel.

Paul addresses this epistle to the saints and faithful brethren in Christ, which are at Colosse (Vs. 2). Being reduced to ruins, there is little history known about this city, except that it was located in the province of Phrygia in Asia Minor. According to Colossians 4:13, it was probably located near the cities of Hierapolis and Laodicea. The church in this city was probably made up of both Jews and Gentiles. Because of this, Paul's letter, along with many other teachings, was a warning of the danger of bringing into the church either the ceremonial law of Judaism or the pagan rituals of the Gentiles. Either would corrupt and jeopardize the truth of the gospel.

Truth is a difficult word to describe. Using other words such as faithfulness, loyalty, trustworthiness, sincerity, genuineness, honesty, or veracity all come close but don't seem to describe it completely. There is a logical truth that relates an idea using known facts. Moral truth is that which is based on a learned distinction between what is right from what is wrong. Many times a word or concept is best described by what it isn't. This seems to apply to truth. Truth is that which is not false; it is not inaccurate, it is not error, wrong, incorrectness, or dishonesty; it is not deceiving, misleading, deceptive, or artificial. Truth is that which is real.

In the bible, truth is the will of God - His word, which He has revealed to us by writers, that were inspired by the Holy Spirit, to bring His truths to mankind for all ages. This we call the gospel. It is God's word. It is truth because God cannot lie (Titus 1:2). In Psalm 119, verse 160, this is said of the Lord God and His Holy Word:Thy word is true from the beginning. Speaking of His apostles and disciples, Jesus prayed to God, Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy word is truth. This was the truth - the word of God, which Jesus said I have given thee. It was the word of truth that Jesus' desciples were to deliver to all mankind, when He sent them into the world, ...that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me (See John 17:14-21).

The common phrase, or question, used when one is sworn in before court testimony is, "do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?" This, in a trite way, recognizes God as the author of truth, and that truth will be spoken in the person's testimony. For the testimony to be the truth, it must be the whole truth. Nothing is to be withheld that would be prejudicial and sway the court, or the jury, into a false rendering of justice. Also, for the testimony to be the truth, it is to be nothing but the truth. Speculation and opinion is not to be rendered as fact. Truth is not to be altered by misrepresentation of facts, or by false statements of any kind. In other words, the person testifying is not to purposefully add to, or omit from, what they know to be the truth. If altered, their testimony would not be the truth and justice would not be served.

The world is full of false teachers, professing to preach the word of God. Yet, for personal gain, or ego-inflating self-glory, they either add to, or subtract from, or modify the true word of God, in order to gain followers that will support their self-centered egos, or reward them financially. In doing so, the truth of God is made a lie, and many souls are led astray through false teaching. When this takes place the truth of the gospel of God becomes the false word of men. Paul, addressed this very fact in his letter to the Christians at Thessalonica, when he tpld them, For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe (1 Thess. 2:13).

Eternal salvation, which is available to the world, and to each of us, personally, depends on the truth of the gospel. In whom do you trust; the truth of God, or the "truth" according to the selfish will of man? Place your trust in God through His Son, Jesus Christ. Truth is found in the gospel of Christ - the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. It is the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation (Eph. 1:13).