What is Truth?
I’m fascinated by the story of Jesus and Pilate in the bible. I don’t know how anyone could not be fascinated by this story. Pilate gets a bad rap and in truth, he appeared to be a coward in the interchange between himself and the Jews and what he should do with Jesus.
What I find most interesting is that Jesus chose to have a conversation with Pilate. This was a conscious choice on the part of Jesus. Jesus knew how everything would play out, he knew because God had called him for this select purpose.
So, Jesus didn’t have to talk to Pilate. He could have made the choice to be silent just as he was in the presence of Herod. When Pilate sent Jesus to Herod, he did so to rid himself of the problem that Jesus presented to him, because he found no fault in Jesus.
Herod treated Jesus like a sideshow, expecting to see some miracle performed before his eyes. When he questioned Jesus, Jesus remained silent. Jesus had shared so much with everyone who had crossed his path before, yet with Herod he remained silent.
Jesus knew Herod’s motives and he knew Herod’s heart. Jesus knew not to waste his breath on a man whose mind was already made up.
But with Pilate it was different. Jesus chose to engage in discourse with Pilate.
I love the question Jesus posed to Pilate.
When Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?”
Jesus replied, “Is that your own idea, or did others talk to you about me?”
Jesus was basically asking, “What do you think, who do you say that I am?”
Pilate was not a religious man. Jesus’ claim to be the king of the Jews did not infuriate Pilate as it did the Jews.
For this reason, Pilate could engage in conversation with Jesus and Jesus could plant seeds.
Then Jesus says something striking to Pilate.
“My kingdom is not of this world, but you are right in saying that I am a king. In fact, it is for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”
Everyone on the side of truth listens to Jesus, to which Pilate responds, “What is truth?” as he walks away.
Pilate doesn’t wait for an answer, but I think that he got his answer when the soldiers at the crucifixion shared their testimony with Pilate.
The earth shook, the rocks split!! Tombs broke open and the bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life!
When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified and exclaimed “Surely, he was the son of God!”
Pilate had a notice prepared and fastened to the cross.
It read: JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS.
Pilate now knew what truth was!
When asked to remove the sign by the Jews, he refused to do so.
Jesus had told him, and he knew.
His wife had told him about a dream she had, that Pilate should have nothing to do with Jesus’ death.
History tells us that many years later Pilate went to live in Alexandria in Egypt and the Coptic Christians declared Pilate a saint.
Jesus had planted the seed, and the Holy spirit allowed the seed to grow.
What is truth and do you stand upon it?
We are pulled in all different directions now to accept everyone’s truth because everyone’s truth may be different, but all truth is valid.
But there is a truth that goes deeper than one’s own conviction and that is the truth of God.
Anyone who thinks their truth supersedes God’s truth is a fool.
To the Jews who had believed in him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32
What is Truth?