What Is Truth?

“Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding: He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.” – Daniel 2:20-22

“Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” – Colossians 2:8

Scripture Reading: Daniel 2 

If you’re looking for answers in this life, you won’t have to look far. These days, there’s a spiritual guru on every corner, looking to peddle their own special brand of inspirational philosophy. They have answers; the only question is – do they have the right answers?

In Daniel 2, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon needed answers, and he quickly found out that his “spiritual” advisors (magicians, astrologers, and sorcerers) didn’t have any. You have to give Nebuchadnezzar credit. He knew the right questions to ask. Plus, it didn’t hurt that he was able to threaten his own gurus within an inch of their lives to force the truth out of them.

So what was the truth? It all started with a disturbing dream. Nebuchadnezzar woke knowing that this dream was important, but oddly enough (and providentially) he couldn’t remember any of it. Enter his top team of gurus, who assure the king that they can interpret the dream, if he can just tell them what was in the dream (Isaiah 41:28-29, John 8:44). Never known for his patience, Nebuchadnezzar is enraged and threatens to kill every last advisor in the kingdom. It’s as if a light bulb has switched on over his head. After all, how wise can these wise men really be, if they can’t even tell him what he dreamed?

Since no one has a good answer for the king, he orders the immediate execution of all of his wise men. The hit list includes Daniel and his three friends, best known as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Having recently impressed the king (Daniel 1:18-20), they are the newest recruits to the wise men team, and now they, too, qualify for execution.

Daniel immediately goes to the king and asks for time. He then gathers his three friends and spends that time in prayer (the best way to attack any problem). A vision comes in the night, and Daniel returns to the presence of the king with real God-given answers. He is able to tell Nebuchadnezzar every detail of his dream, as well as its interpretation, and he takes no credit for himself. His report to the king is saturated with praise for “the God of heaven” who reveals secrets, sets up and removes kings (a lesson that Nebuchadnezzar would eventually learn the hard way), and gives wisdom. By the time Daniel is finished, even Nebuchadnezzar admits that Daniel’s God is the “Lord of kings”.

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6), and, “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). He also said, “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth” (John 17:17). It’s not about picking the truth of your choice or the truth that’s most comfortable for you. It’s about knowing the only truth, Jesus, and living by the truth of God’s Word.

If it’s wise to know what’s in your drinking water or the food you eat, then I think it’s wise to know where your spiritual food comes from as well. So here’s the test for any truth that anyone tries to sell you. If you can’t find solid scripture to back it, don’t bank on it. Don’t be fooled by clever catch-phrases and feel-good philosophy (Romans 1:25, Ephesians 5:5-13). Make sure it lines up with God’s Word, and even more importantly, make sure it depends on God’s Word (Psalm 1, II Timothy 3:16). The best preachers and Bible teachers are like the moon – they have no light of their own; they merely reflect the light of the Son. Humility (not popularity and showiness) is a hallmark of Christ-likeness (Matthew 7:21-23, James 4:10, I Peter 5:6), and the Bible is the only God-breathed, infallible Book there is (John 12:43, II Timothy 3:1-5, Titus 1:16).

One last lesson from Daniel – whenever you struggle to understand, pray for godly wisdom, just like Daniel did. God is faithful (Jeremiah 33:3). The truth is not that hard to find, once you know the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  And He is all the truth you need.


Who are your most trusted advisors? Where do you go to get answers? Take an inventory and make sure that you know the Truth (Jesus), and you get your truth from His Word.

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