A television interviewer tries to elicit the truth from a politician. We recognise of old the politician’s strategies for avoiding the interviewer’s questions. We are called to do jury service and determine to get to the bottom of the case, but suddenly everyone’s version of events is slightly different. We pick up on a charged atmosphere at home, but when we quiz our children or spouse, we are met with evasion and equivocation. The opposite of truth is not always a lie. Truth can be avoided, twisted, disguised, or simply not recognised. One thing is for sure though; we all have some kind of sixth sense for knowing when we are not getting the truth. That’s why it’s so refreshing and so powerful when somebody gets up and speaks a simple truth from the heart. The truth makes us sit up and listen. Perhaps this is what Jesus meant when he told Pilate, “Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”
Standing in front of Pilate, Jesus doesn’t back down or compromise the truth because the truth is too important. The trouble with earthly kingdoms is that the truth is not always of paramount importance. In earthly kingdoms the truth gets in the way of our personal agendas. In our quest for territory, power, resources and a comfortable life style, the truth takes second place. We might think that we are truthful people and that we never tell lies, but it is all too easy to live a lie without admitting it even to ourselves. Pilate was not able to understand the kingdom Jesus alluded to, and he was not able to see Jesus as king. Pilate failed to recognise the truth.
Today’s challenge is to recognise truth in all of life’s circumstance, to stand up for the truth in all of life’s difficulties, and to live by the truth to the best of our ability.