(John 18:37-38) “Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice. (38) Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault at all.”
Men from the start of recorded history have sought for truth. Webster defined truth as: 1) Conformity to fact or reality; exact accordance with that which is, or has been, or shall be. The truth of history constitutes its whole value. We rely on the truth of the Scriptural prophecies. 2) The truth of God is His veracity and faithfulness (Psalm 71:22); or His revealed will.
The text verses are lifted out of an interrogation by Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor, of Jesus Christ. Pilate had asked the accusers of Jesus (Jn. 18:29), “What accusation bring ye against this man?” Their reply was that they could not by their law put any man to death (Jn. 18:31). Then Pilate began to interrogate Jesus with several questions: 1) (Jn. 18:33) “At thou the king of the Jews?” 2) (Jn. 18:35) “what hast thou done?” 3) (Jn. 18:37) “Art thou a king then?” Then Jesus answered Pilate in (Jn. 18:37b), “…Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.” Then Pilate asked Jesus the last question in (Jn. 18:38), “Pilate saith unto him, What is truth?”
Jesus Christ said of Himself (Joh 14:6) “Jesus saith to him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no man cometh to the Father, but by me.” Jesus said these words to His disciples because He was God in the flesh (1 Tim. 3:16) “And without controversy, great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached to the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” God is The Truth; for in Him is no Sin or variableness or shadow of turning (Jas. 1:17c); therefore, truth is God and God is Truth. Truth is then pure, righteous, holy, just, and perfect; for God is these things. Jesus was telling Pilate, I am The Truth, The Way and The Life; I Am God; the Great I Am that I Am; the Self-Existent One; the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. I have come to earth to bear witness, or reveal the Truth, or to reveal God to My people.
Jesus told Pilate, “Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.” Then Pilate immediately asked Jesus, “what is truth?” Pilate’s question revealed that he was not of the Truth (or not of Christ).
Therefore, simply said, if you are asking this question, then you do not know the Truth or Christ. That is, you do not know (by experience) Christ as God; as Substitute for you (2 Cor. 5:21); or as your Sacrifice for the payment or your sin debt (Eph. 1:7); or as your Savior from the power of sin and from the penalty and punishment for sin and the practice of sin (Rom. 3:24-25; 5:1-21; 6:1-23). That is, you do not know that you have been crucified with Christ; buried with Christ; and now have been raised with Christ to walk in the newness of Life (the Life of God). That is, you do not understand that those “in Christ” are not under condemnation; but are those who have been set free from being a servant of unrighteousness and are now a servant of righteousness (Rom. 6:4-23; 8:1-17); and now bear the fruit of holiness; and cry, “Abba Father,” having the internal witness that you are a child of God (Rom. 8:14-17). That is, you do not know that once you were blind spiritually, but now your spiritual eyes have been opened to see and know by experience of regeneration that Christ is God; and you have been born again from above by God the Spirit (John 3:3-8). That is, you do not know that you have been set free from the curse of the law (which is spiritual death or spiritual separation from God; which is being dead in trespasses and sin); and now have been made free in the Victory of Christ; Who defeated death, hell and the grave, and the devil (Heb. 2:14; 1 Cor. 15:1-58).
When Jesus said in (John 8:32), “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free,” Jesus was saying, that His people shall, not maybe, but shall know (by experience in regeneration and conversion) The Truth (or will come to know Me, Jesus Christ, the Savior) and this knowledge of knowing Me, The Truth, “shall make you free.” That is free from the power, penalty, punishment, and practice of sin forever and ever (Rom. 8:29-39).
Therefore, the answer to the question, “What is Truth?” asked by Pilate, the Roman governor, is Jesus Christ and that Jesus lives in you.