“This Companion is the Spirit of Truth, whom the world can’t receive because it neither sees him nor recognizes him. You know him, because he lives with you and will be with you . . . Peace I leave with you.” John 14:17, 27a
Truth and peace go hand in hand. If we have Christ’s peace, we also know the Spirit of Truth. It dwells in us and gives us peace. The world doesn’t know truth because it cannot recognize peace. At least it seems that way in our culture. We are a fearful, anxious, reactive society. We put our faith in impermanent things—money, status, power and possessions—but because they are impermanent, we are perpetually anxious.
We need to recognize that truth is not found in worldly power but in letting go, in generosity, sacrifice, humility and weakness. It is the way Jesus came. “I am the way, the truth and the life.” (John 14:6) This is about how to live. The way is a life of downward mobility and humble service, the pattern of living that Jesus modeled for us. We have turned it into an exclusivity that allows us to build ourselves up materially and egotistically. We never get to truth and life if we don’t even follow the way.
It is why we cannot recognize the Spirit of Truth, because what we recognize is ego, power and accumulation of wealth. We don’t understand that to be strong, one becomes weak. To gain one’s life, we must give our life away. To be born in Christ, we have to die to self.
We cannot have the peace of Christ if we are constantly protecting our egos, our possessions, our status and our power. We think peace is found by defeating our enemies, but we find peace by defeating our ego and its overwhelming appetite for control. When I have nothing left to protect or defend, nothing I must possess or control, when I release the burden of self-preservation, I then have the unshakable peace of Christ and a home within for the Spirit of Truth.