So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in Him, "If you abide in My Word, you are truly My disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." John 8:31-32
The truth does set people free. At least that is what happens when people know the truth.
Let me explain why I put the qualifier on the Savior's words. In 1982 Alton Logan was convicted of killing a security guard at a McDonald's restaurant in Chicago. The police said he was guilty; three eyewitnesses said he was guilty.
It's not surprising the jury, having heard the evidence, sentenced Alton Logan to life in prison.
There is only one problem. Alton Logan didn't commit the crime. The murder had been perpetrated by Andrew Wilson who had also killed two policemen. Andrew Wilson confessed to the murder of the McDonald's guard. He was found with the gun he took from the McDonald's guard.
But ... and this is a big but. Andrew Wilson confessed the crime to his lawyers. Tragically, because they were his lawyers, Wilson's confession was privileged information. The lawyers were not allowed to go to Alton Logan's trial and share the truth. They had to keep silent. They had to let Logan be convicted. They had to let Logan, an innocent man, spend 26 years in prison.
It was only when their client died that those lawyers were able to tell the truth. That truth has set Alton Logan free. Apparently, a Chicago police chief also knew the truth, but he ordered his underlings to keep quiet. That chief did some jail time for his acts, and the city of Chicago has now paid Alton $10.25 million for the injustice done and the lies which had been told.
So what does that have to do with Christianity?
Simply this: you and I have the truth. We know that God's Son, Jesus Christ, came into this world to offer Himself up as our substitute. We know Jesus carried our sins and resisted every temptation. We know He died the death we deserved and rose on the third day, after He had been buried. We know the truth which says all who believe on Him as their Savior will not perish but have everlasting life.
This is the truth that sets people free.
Sadly, there are millions of people who have never heard this truth. They have never been told about the wonderful sacrifice made by our Savior. And that is a tragedy. It is a tragedy far worse than that which was done to Logan.
This is why we who have the truth must be dedicated to sharing that truth. There are billions of people on the wrong road, which leads to hell. We have the truth, which can set them on the right path. All we need do is share that truth, as the Savior asked.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, somebody has shared the truth of salvation with me. That truth has freed me of my sins and brought about my release from the eternal fires of hell. Now may I share that truth with others, and may those others believe Your truth, which sets souls free from sin. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries