Part 1 – What Shall We Do?
The Most Important Question in the Bible: “What Shall We Do?”
To find the answer to this question requires a search. It’s a search for truth—a search for the true answer.
The Search For Truth
What is the truth? Where can you find truth? Who is speaking or preaching the truth in our world today?
We live in a world where truth has become relative to many cultures and individuals. This makes the search for truth seem harder than ever before, yet it is still of the utmost importance. Before we can even begin discussing truth, we must first lay the foundational understanding that universal truth does indeed exist.
The Latin phrase Veritas est index sui et falsi means, “Truth is the criterion of itself and the false.”
One of the most important verses in the Bible is 2 Timothy 3:16 which says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”. The point this verse is making is that all Scripture contained in the Bible has been “given by inspiration of God.” It is not man-made conjecture or ideas.
These scriptures and many more provide us with an understanding that truth itself comes directly from God through His Word.
Since absolute truth does exist, it is important for us to distinguish between what is true and what is false. Let us now take a look at what the Bible has to say about truth especially in reference to our relationship with Him.
“But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:23-24).
This passage clearly explains that truth is important. In order to become a true worshipper of Jesus Christ, a person must enter into both His Spirit and His Truth. John tells us that there is a distinct difference between a true worshipper and a false worshipper, or perhaps we might say an acceptable worshipper verses an unacceptable worshipper.
Is There Such A Thing As A Wrong Way To Worship God?
The Story Of Cain And Abel
Upon first thought, one might think God would accept all forms of worship. However, this is not the case. There is no better example of this than the story of Cain and Abel. The account recorded in the first book of the Bible, contains a number of valuable keys. First, consider that these are the first two people born outside the Garden of Eden (Genesis 4:1). Because of this, Cain and Abel were the first people born under the penalty of sin (Genesis 3:14-19). As we read about the two brothers, we find that both of them attempted to worship God with an offering. However, one method of worship was accepted, and the other was rejected.
And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering: But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door (Genesis 4:2-7).
So is there a type of worship God will not accept? Cain's offering (worship) was refused, while Abel's offering (worship) was accepted by God. This account teaches us that even today there is a right and a wrong way to approach God, and it is very important that we do it the right way.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God (Romans 12:1-2).
Cain’s offering represents mankind doing things their own way, while Abel’s offering represents worshipping God’s way.
We must present our worship to God in an acceptable manner. To discover the manner acceptable to God and become a true worshipper, we must reflect back on our originally query: How can we know the truth?
Some say it does not matter how people worship as long as they are sincere. Others say it’s all right to worship in many different ways. These ideologies, and others like them, must be evaluated by the same, unchanging criteria: Is this the truth? The only way to definitively evaluate these different approaches to worship is to examine them against a true source: Scripture—the Word of Truth.
The Ultimate Source Of Truth
Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth (John 17:17).
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God… And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth (John 1:1,14).
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me (John 14:6).
Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost (2 Peter 1:20-21).
Let’s look again at our three original questions: What is the truth? Where can you find truth? Who is telling the truth?
The Bible makes it clear that Jesus Himself is the source of all truth. He is the Word incarnate (in living flesh). The only way a man or woman can be sure he or she is following truth is to find the truth in Jesus Christ. You will find it in His Word—the written Scripture and the Word preached by those He has entrusted it to
Our study will continue in Lesson 2 with a look at that first facet of scriptural importance given to us in 2 Timothy 3:16: doctrine.