Thursday, January 2, 2014

Are We Still Falling For The Lie?

Many of us in the Church are victims of the enemy's lies without even knowing it. In fact, he has done such a good job that we defend his lies as being good for us. We have gone so far off of God's path for us that God's ways have become something foreign to us. The thing is, the enemy is still using the same old trick and we keep falling for it.

From the very first day God desired to have a rich relationship with us. Many of us consider the walks Adam had with God something precious and for which to long. It wasn't complicated with God in the beginning; there was only one simple rule. But that one simple rule was enough for our enemy to use to separate us from God. Do not eat from this tree, was all God stated, and then all the enemy had to do was plant a seed of thought.

Eve did a good job in correcting the enemy when he tried to twist God's words. Eve told him that it wasn't what God said and then repeated back to the enemy what God had said. She did better than many of us do today. She did exactly what Jesus did when he was tempted by the enemy. But then the enemy planted a thought that Eve found hard to resist; he promised her knowledge. We bear witness to the progression of thought as Eve faced this temptation and in it we see the logic of our own thinking.

First Eve actually took the time to look at the tree, which was her big mistake. The enemy actually got her to consider what he was saying, even though he was accusing God of lying. She looked at the tree and considered that it was good for food. We reason away our disobedience. God didn't say it wouldn't be good for food but it was never about the benefits of the tree and always about obedience to God. But she looked and her intelligence told her it was good for food.

In looking she discovered that the tree was a delight to look upon. It was a thing of beauty. Surely something that brought so much pleasure to her senses could not be bad. Even as the thought settled in she was subconsciously saying God was indeed a liar. It stopped being about obedience to God and became a thing that made her feel good.

In accepting the pleasure it brought, her logic then took her to the great benefit it would bring. It was a tree that would give her wisdom, making her better than she was. After all, isn't wisdom a great thing to have? She placed her desires above the thing of singular importance in her relationship with God; obedience.

I am sure you can see how this applies to this continuing lie of the enemy. We place obedience to God as secondary importance to many other things in our life. Human logic prevails. Anything that doesn't seem to make sense in God's commands and desire for us we simply dismiss and replace it with rational thinking. Anyone who does not have a relationship with God would find my words foreign and silly. Of course rational thinking is what we should be seeking. Knowledge is what we seek. Even if it takes us to places God told us not to go. Or, at least that is where our thought process takes us; our human wisdom.

No one would deny our focus on pleasure these days. We once worked for fulfillment but now we work so we can afford our pleasures and it is the pleasures that give us fulfillment. Everything is focused on what makes us feel good. It doesn't matter that any of these things go against God's morality and will; all that matters is that it makes us feel good, so it must be good.

Logical thinking sees a pastor and congregation support homosexual marriage and keeps us silent on everything else. But homosexuality is not the big sin we make it out to be because it is the denial of Jesus for which we will be judged. Many of us, if not all, deny Jesus in many ways as we disobey God in our hearts as we seek after the lies of the enemy. We can confess him with our lips but deny him in our disobedience to his will. It doesn't matter what we consider to be good. The only judge on that matter is God and it is why we cannot obey without trusting that he is good.

We should be very thankful for this age of grace because all of us would be lost without it. However, falling for the lies while relying on grace is not going to see our relationship with God increase. We are not going to discover the wonders of spiritual maturity. We are not going to progress in what matters most. No, in order to enjoy the rich fellowship of our God we need to foster the desire to be obedient to him. Not obedience in a cold religious way but in a deep fellowship of love, where our every desire is to live the will of the Father, just like Jesus.

To progress in maturity we need to discover the spiritual strength of denying the enemy by denying ourselves.  Our pleasure is not found in the things of man's thinking and imagination; it isn't found in rational thinking; it is only found in the rich relationship that fosters obedience. At least ask the Father to open your eyes to your true spiritual condition under the influence of the enemy.

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