“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32
At times we feel oppressed by some mental block. Maybe the Devil has lied to you, Did you see how that person at church looked at you? He doesn’t like you. You shouldn’t go back there. Then the truth comes in. Somebody comes up and says, So-and-so was just telling me what a wonderful brother you are. He’s so glad you’re part of the church. Immediately, you’re set free. That’s what the truth does for us.
The Light of Life
As He finished speaking to the woman caught in adultery, Jesus told the crowd, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life” (John 8:12). This is Jesus’ second “I am” statement. The tragedy is that as Jesus declared this facet of who He was, He was once again met with resistance from the Pharisees.
Despite their rejection of Him, Jesus kept pleading with them. As the large, mixed crowd around Him observed another prolonged dispute develop between Jesus and the religious leaders, some of them realized, “This guy Jesus knows what He’s talking about—these other guys don’t have a clue.” At this they believed in Jesus.
Jesus seemed to direct His words at this point more to these Jews who believed in Him than to the leaders: “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31–32). Those of us who believe in Jesus today need to hear this as well.
Abide In the Word of God
The great tragedy in the church is its neglect of the Word of God. Throughout church history, whenever the Word of God has been exalted, proclaimed, and believed, the church has prospered and been effective. Whenever God’s Word has been neglected and disbelieved, the church has plunged into catastrophe and ineffectiveness.
Today even the Evangelical Church is in some quarters rejecting the Bible. They are diminishing the significance of God’s Word, rejecting its authority and sufficiency. But Christians cannot live victoriously when disconnected from the Word of God.
The word “abide” could be translated “continue” or “stay.” Its implication is “live.” When the Word of God becomes as important to us as our daily bread, then we’re living in it. And we are Jesus’ disciples indeed.
When we abide in the Word, we will know the truth, and the truth will make us free. But many Christians are still in bondage to sin. Is this an indictor that the gospel has failed? Certainly not! Christians are in bondage because they do not abide in the Word. They come to Christ and are set free. But they fail to go deeper in the Word, and problems creep back into their lives. Some even end up in gross, blatant sin.
To abide in the Word implies obedience to it. But to obey the Word, we’ve got to know it. We’ve got to spend time in it. As we grow in our knowledge of what God says, we will be able to obey Him.
Know the Truth
“Word” in English comes from several different Greek words. The Greek word rhema means “a specific word.” A rhema is what you receive when you open up the Scripture, and right there is God’s word to you for your specific situation. God wants to give us those words—to show us the truth, to set us free.
The world is under massive deception, and it’s getting worse. Rapidly. At a certain point the Devil will incarnate himself in a man and say, “I am God,” and everybody will believe it. With all the lies swirling around us today, we must know the truth. We must abide in the Word. Then we will truly be Jesus’ disciples. We will know the truth, and the truth will make us free.
Are you walking in freedom or tangled up by some lie? If you’re not free, it’s because you are either unaware of the truth or not obeying it. Decide today to get into the Word and receive the truth. Then act upon it and experience the freedom that Christ came to bring.