What is the truth? That’s what our postmodern culture asks. It’s not a new question, though. Pilate said it to Jesus when Jesus was on trial. He didn’t wait for the answer.
The serpent asked it of Eve in the Garden of Eden. ‘Did God really say…’. Today we explore the truth of God.
What is the truthfulness of God?
God’s truthfulness means that He is the true God and that all His knowledge and words are both true and the final standard of truth.
Where does it say in the Bible that God is the only true God?
Jeremiah 10:10-11 says that the God revealed in Scripture is the true God and all the other so-called gods are idols. Jesus says that God is the only true God in John 17:03.
That seems close-minded, what does it mean to be the true God as opposed to other beings who are not God?
It must mean that God in His own being or character is the one who fully conforms to the idea of what God should be. What philosophers call a Maximally Great Being. Namely, a being who is infinitely perfect in power, wisdom, goodness, in lordship over time and space and so forth.
Who’s idea of God is this? What idea of God must one conform to in order to be the true God?
We cannot say a being has to fit our idea of what God should be. We must say that it is God Himself who has the only perfect idea of what God should be like. A god that conforms to us is no true god, just merely an idealized reflection of our desires.
God has placed in our minds a reflection of His own idea of what He’s like so we can recognize Him as God. All-Powerful, All-Knowing, Everywhere, Just and Good for starters. We wouldn’t think of a god as weak, ignorant, local, and corrupt; that is unrecognizable.
What is true knowledge?
God’s knowledge is perfect and true and is the final standard for truth (Job 37:16). This means He’s never mistaken in His perception and understanding. He knows all things infinitely well, so the standard of true knowledge is conformity to God’s knowledge. His words are both true and the final standard of truth. And God always does what He promises (Deuteronomy 32:4).
Sometimes this aspect of God’s faithfulness is seen as its own distinct attribute.
What does God’s faithfulness mean?
God’s faithfulness means that God will always do what he says and will fulfill what He’s promised. (Numbers 23:19; 2 Samuel 7:28; Psalm 141:6)
What does this mean for me?
God can be relied on. The essence of true faith is taking God at His word and relying on Him to do as He promised. If God is truthful, then we have to say that all God’s words about himself and creation completely correspond to reality. They are truth itself, the final standard and definition of truth. Whatever conforms to God’s words is true and whatever fails to conform is not true.
When our thoughts line up with what we learn in Scripture and when we allow scripture to guide us in our observation and interpretation of the real world, we begin to think and see the world as God does.
This should encourage us to pursue knowledge in all areas of the social and natural sciences and the humanities. Whenever we discover more truth about the nature of reality, we discover more of the truth that God already knows. Growth in knowledge is part of the process of becoming more like God (but not God ourselves) in His own image.
Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Colossians 3:9-10
Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine by Wayne Grudem
Chapter 12: The Character of God; “Communicable” Attributes of God Part 1