Greetings and good morning, brothers and sisters. This is Dr. James Perry continuing with our series, where we seek to explore the deeper meanings of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the years, the heavenly Father has revealed many revelations of spiritual truth to me, and I want to share them with you. This morning we seek to understand the experience of truth.
And now, sit back and listen to today's message.
The Experience of Truth
1. "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." John, Chapter 14, Verse 6
Brothers and sisters, in today’s broadcast, we explore the meaning of the experience of Truth. We know that God is truth, and the experience of truth is the experience of God. We want to explore this concept and gain greater insight into it. We know that truth can be experienced but error cannot. We recognize that most of our lives the things that we have been taught about God have been a mixture of truth and error. And as we continue to observe, we recognize that this process is ongoing. And the teachers who teach these errors believe that they are teaching the truth. And this error results from the failure to realize that Jesus is not only our Savior but also the personal revelation of the Father. To experience the Father, we must experience Jesus who is the truth, the way, and the life. We have to go no further than our inner life to experience the Spirit of Jesus, the Spirit of Jesus. Jesus clearly reveals the character of the Father.
We think that a lot of their confusion in their minds about the nature of God and his character would clear if only they would view God as their heavenly Father and thus relate themselves as sons and daughters of the heavenly Father. The relationship of Father and son is a concept that is very familiar, but the concept of God as God is remote from them since they cannot experience God as God, and this is where they falter. Not having any basis for relating to God except as an all powerful and just creator, they have no choice but to remain on this wheel of error, seeking knowledge about him from the outside while rejecting the knowledge of him on the inside.
The outside contains intellectual knowledge about God which is a mixture of truth and error that we experience with our material minds; the inside contains the knowledge of God through His Son, Jesus, which we experience in our souls. Right away, we can see that outside influences are unnecessary when it comes to the Father-son relationship, just as no outside influences are necessary in our human relationships of father and son. And while the son may read about his human father, especially if his father is famous, and others may tell him what his father is like, the son who experiences a relationship with his father is the authority on that relationship. This means erroneous concepts of the same relationship are non-existent.
And he can do this because of his first-hand experience with his father. But if the human child refuses to acknowledge the meanings of the experience with his father and relies on what others say about his father, then there is no hope for him to gain a true picture in his mind of what his father is like. He ignores the meaning of truth.
And since our experience with our heavenly Father is a spiritual experience in an analogous way similar to the experience with our earthly fathers, when it comes to defining the relationship with the spiritual Father that we have experienced we remain unchallengeable. We hold these meanings in our mind of what it means to be a child of the heavenly Father. But again, if we ignore the values of our spiritual experience and ignore the meaning of those values, then there is no hope of us gaining a true picture of the Father’s character in our minds. This is despite the truth that we continue to experience the Father through his Son in our souls.
How can we be sure that the meanings that we hold in our minds are truly reflective of the experience that we have with our heavenly Father? This is a question easy to ask but hard to answer to the satisfaction of our minds. The experience of truth--the Father-son relationship--is the validation of truth. But that takes us back to the original question: How can we be sure that the meanings that we hold in our minds are truly reflective of the experience that we have with our heavenly Father? Fortunately we do have a starting point to break what seems like a circular argument. We have an earthly model of the father-son relationship. And we have experience with it.
We know that our earthly fathers love us, shares our lives with us, guide and direct us, encourages, protects, and provide educational experiences for us so that we have a stimulus to assist in our growth and development. When needed the Father provides discipline so that we don’t wonder aimlessly through life. Our earthly fathers rejoice when we succeed and share our sorrows when we temporarily fail. Our earthly fathers spend time with us, and we enjoy our fellowship with him. We enjoy being in his presence. We recognize that the heavenly Father must not only enjoy those qualities of the earthly Father but must transcend those qualities as well. The heavenly Father loves us with a far-seeing fatherly affection. And as we experience the meanings of these qualities of fatherhood in our minds, we hold the proof that we are indeed experiencing the truth of the Father-son relationship.
Like the earthly father, we spend time in his presence, getting to know him, becoming like him, following his guidance, receiving his wisdom, his love and mercy. We receive his comfort, encouragement, his spiritual power, hope, faith, grace, discipline, a host of other good and beautiful qualities that we are not yet aware of and a wide range of educational spiritual experiences designed to help us mature so that we truly understand him and his purpose. And we know that as we develop spiritually, the meanings of this relationship continue to increase to such a quality where they equal the quality of his Son, Jesus. And when they do, we become mature--become perfect even as He is perfect and qualified to portray his love and mercy under any and all circumstances to our brothers and sisters. No evil or sin is too daunting for us to take on.
Come one, come all. Taste and see that the Lord is good!
This concludes today's message on understanding the meaning of the experience of truth. We hope you find something in this message to ponder and pray about as you go about your day.
Until next time, this is Dr. James Perry.