Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free — John 8:31-32.
The above verse is often quoted in a shortened version: “the truth shall make you free.” Yes, the truth will make you free but you need to look at what comes before this statement.
For a long time, I focused on the words right before “the truth shall make you free.” Those words are “And ye shall know the truth.” Before the truth can bring freedom, you have to know it and accept it. Later, I saw something deeper — the statement Jesus made before John 8:32. Let’s look at John 8:31:
If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
Continue in the Greek means:
Keep on doing something that requires an intense effort
Devotion to a task in spite of difficulty
To give constant attention to a person or task
This is how we are to approach the Word of God. Reading, studying, meditating often requires strong effort because we sometimes have to fight the flesh. Maybe we’d rather watch TV or go out with friends. Even still, we must make time for the Bible. It’s our spiritual food. It’s what makes us strong.
Devotion to and paying constant attention to what the Bible says does what? It causes us to know the truth. In other words, it brings revelation knowledge:
The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple — Psalm 119:130.
The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes — Psalm 19:8.
There are times when the truth is hard to bear. When you read John 8:12-58, you will discover a conversation between Jesus and the Pharisees. The Pharisees found Jesus’ words extremely difficult to receive. That’s because they cut and exposed their deceit. These religious leaders only pretended to be holy when deep down they were “full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.” (Matthew 23:27).
Maybe you’ve read a verse from the Bible or heard something in a sermon and you are struggling. Let the Holy Spirit do His work. It could be He is giving you the truth about your attitude or actions. Receive that Word and let Him set you free!
It’s important for you to receive the truth of God’s Word daily. Deception is overtaking this world. Right is wrong and wrong is right. I’m sure you can see it for yourself when you read the newspaper or watch the news. Some would say the world is going crazy. If you don’t want to “go crazy” you must CONTINUE in the Word. You must so that you can arrive at the truth and walk in the light.