I John 5:20 – We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.
Do you know what is true?
Before I looked up the definition of the word “True”, I thought, what’s the point, we all know what true means. And that may be, but I did not expect the fullness of the word and how it may relate to my God. Besides the very last definition, I feel like reading the definition of true gives such a full, almost 3-D picture of the True God, my true God. Read the definitions again slowly, thinking about how God is true and see if it feels like more than you thought it did when you first read the Bible verse above. Amazing the depth of it all.
We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true.
Jesus has given us understanding. Before Jesus came, believers were trusting that God would one day send a savior. They had faith that God would do what He said He would do. When Jesus came and fulfilled the many prophecies, He gave us a fuller understanding of God. Because Jesus fulfilled all those prophecies to the nth degree, we can see that God is true to His word. And He is so much more, true in so many ways, so many ways included in the definition above. But I think there is a very important part of this section of our verse that I don’t want to miss. Jesus came to give us understanding so that we may know Him who is true. God wants us to know Him. How do you get to know someone? I’m not talking about acquaintances. I’m talking about those people who really know us. Is it your family? Your best friend? Maybe it’s your enemy. How do they know you?
Spending time with someone and going through things with people is the way we get to see the character of a person. Our perception of someone may not be the same as their other friends, because it may depend on your shared experiences. When you get married and join another family, you quickly realize how well your family knows you and gets you (good or bad). You understand and know each other better than you know your new family. You’ve been through a lot with them (usually years and years). They’ve seen you at your best and at your worst. You’ve not always treated them kindly, but they haven’t always been kind to you either. But you know each other. God wants you to know Him, inside and out too. He wants you to be able to say, “That God, He’s so funny.” or “It’s so nice to spend time with someone who gets me”.
So that we may know him who is true.
Do you get what a miracle it is that the God of the universe wants a personal relationship with you (and me). I’m amazed. The most important being ever, wants you to get to know Him. He wants to spend time with you, be there for you to lean on when you’re going through troubles and to know all of your inside jokes. Oh how different our lives would be if we truly tried to get to know our Lord.
And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ.
So how to we get to know God? By getting to know Jesus Christ. Spending time reading His word, doing Bible studies, worshiping and praying, and by spending time with other believers that build you up in Christ.
We don’t always want to know the truth.
In my Bible study that I do with a friend on Tuesday mornings, there was an interesting example of how we (and the people of Judah) sometimes react to hearing what is true. In Isaiah 30:8-11 it says, Now go and write down these words. Write them in a book. They will stand until the end of time as a witness that these people are stubborn rebels who refuse to pay attention to the Lord’s instructions. They tell the seers, “Stop seeing visions!”
They tell the prophets, “Don’t tell us what is right. Tell us nice things. Tell us lies. Forget all this gloom. Get off your narrow path. Stop telling us about your ‘Holy One of Israel.’”
Some times we don’t want to know what is True. Sometimes we rebel, but pulling away from the True God only leads to destruction. God is always waiting for us to return to Him. He’s always ready to help us get to know Him more fully. Later in Isaiah 30 it says, ”
So the Lord must wait for you to come to him
so he can show you his love and compassion.
For the Lord is a faithful God.
Blessed are those who wait for his help.
O people of Zion, who live in Jerusalem,
you will weep no more.
He will be gracious if you ask for help.
He will surely respond to the sound of your cries.
Though the Lord gave you adversity for food
and suffering for drink,
he will still be with you to teach you.
You will see your teacher with your own eyes.
Your own ears will hear him.
Right behind you a voice will say,
“This is the way you should go,”
whether to the right or to the left.
Then you will destroy all your silver idols
and your precious gold images.
You will throw them out like filthy rags,
saying to them, “Good riddance!”
What do you want? True or False?