Truth (trooth) n. 1. the thing that is a fact or reality; 2. something factual or so clearly stated that it is without need of an explanation; 3. a position, concept or statement generally believed to be accepted or obvious, or a scientific accuracy or undisputed conclusion; 4. to be faithful to a cause or person [i.q. true] and steadfast in that faith; 5. Honesty, or a sincerity of or toward honesty; 6. that which is not deceptive or wrong; 7. God.
A definition of truth, by Merriam Webster dictionary. As a theologian, I can see where they key definition lies. Truth is honesty, steadfast faith to a cause or person not deceptive. Truth is God.
In scripture we are told: “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life.'” [John 14:6]. Ipso facto, Jesus is truth. However it seems to be the weakness of man, that we do not know the truth, or recognize the truth or what is true. We are told from the outset of the Gospel; “… and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.” [John 1:10-11]
Continually throughout scripture, Jesus seems to be convincing people- sometimes even his own disciples, who he is and was it the truth. “He said to them, ‘Do you light a lamp to put it under a bowl or bed? Instead don’t you put it on a stand? For whatever is hidden, is meant to be disclosed and whatever is concealed is meant to be found and brought out into the open.” [Mark 4:21-22]
If we are to find truth and believe in truth- in God, where are we to look? Perhaps, since Christ is love and taught love, we are to look there. It is a pillar of Dominican life that it is impossible to separate truth and love. They become not only so dependent on each other and interchangeable that they indeed become almost the same word. Try this- read scripture and replace the word “truth” for the word “love” wherever it is found. The meaning is not lost. It may even be more influential. More powerful.
“Come before the Father, full of grace and truth.” [John 1:14] “Worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth.” [John 4:23] “The Lord is near to all who call him, to all who call on him in truth.” [Psalm 145:18]
From those few simple passages we can see, God desires to be worshipped and approached in love. This then , is truth. Because in love, we bare our souls and expose ourselves. It is only then that we can truly be enlightened and holy. For together, “Love rejoices in truth.” [1 Corinthians 13:6] For love and truth go hand in hand- the are the same thing.
All through the First Epistle of John, we are told time and time again- that if we are deceptive, lie or become like hypocrites we do not have the truth within us. That being so, we do not have love within us. For love opens us up. It is only through love, that we can ever hope to become true followers of Christ and practitioners of His word.
Recalling now the dictionary definition that began this, perhaps we need to amend and expand upon the defined meaning of truth. Maybe we need to add an eighth definition of the word- that truth is love. I could take an editorial license here in my own essay and add that after the fact- ” 8. Love.”
Oh wait, it is there already. In the seventh definition- ” 7. God.”