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The Persecuted Church


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When lies become more abundant than the truth

What is a lie? It is like darkness to the light. A lie does not contain the truth “no lie is of the truth (I Jn 2:21). Light does not contain darkness, they are not a mixture. A lie distorts the truth and makes it into something other than its nature. Truth is often understood as the opposite of what is false; more accurately it is the absence of falsehood.

It takes integrity and courage to tell the truth, especially in place of an opposition. The truth can hurt but it will always yield good fruit when it is accepted and adhered to. It takes integrity to tell the truth.

Unfortunately, in our day, lies are more common than the truth. There is a raging battle of truth against lies.

So it becomes refreshing to hear the truth spoken and promoted.

John Lennon of the Beatles sang, “All I want is the truth Just gimme some truth. All I want is the truth now Just gimme some truth now, All I want is the truth” Nick Mason sang an interesting song (being facetious) “...There's no way to warn a fool, there just fool’s, Give me a lie for a lie give me a truth for a truth, nothing is hard to believe, no one is hard to deceive. Leave me a light in the dark....

Songs about the truth and lies are second to the subject of love. People want to know the truth; some are more earnest in this pursuit than others. People want truth, not lies. No one likes to be lied to, especially when they are involved in a matter with the one lying. There are those who get caught in a small lie and make up another lie to cover it up. People will say anything to protect their reputation or life. Sometimes they don’t realize what they are doing, because it’s the fallen human nature at work.

The Scripture tells us “the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one” (1 John 5:19). Jesus said of Satan in John 8:44: “He does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of it.”

Satan first went among the angels causing a rebellion among his own in heaven. For mankind, lying is traced back to the garden where this fallen angel came to Eve on earth and he substituted a lie for what God instructed for the first couple, instigating the fall. Paul warned the church that he did not want us to be deceived as Eve was by the serpent’s craftiness. All he can speak are lies - Jesus only tells us “the Truth.

Lying has become part of the human condition. There are pathological liars; there are professional liars who want something from you. People that often tell a lie want to protect themselves; to win you over with false information, to persuade you for gain. When people protect themselves with a lie it often gets layered with other lies. We can make all kinds of choices in life but lying should not be one of them, purposely lying.

People build careers on lies. They exaggerate on their abilities and experience. So when they get promoted to a better position they are unable to do it correctly. Because of the Peter Principle people are put in places of authority that they are not equipped for, so eventually they will bumble and many things get affected. They lie because they want to keep their position (mentioned in our Aug.- Oct newsletter).

Any lie will challenge the truth but rarely does someone tell a lie without some partial truth accompanying it. When people accept lies as the truth, their lives change, the more lies they accept the more change it brings to them. Eventually they cannot accept the truth nor or understand it.

The battle of truth against lies is found in nearly every facet of our society, in business, politics and religion. People are being lied to in every sector of our society, including the church. The reason we have a culture dominated by lies is because there is little resistance. People are not taught logic or how to use critical thinking, they lack common sense. They accept what someone says because they are either: famous, popular, or respected because of their vocation, not because of a persons honesty, integrity.

The truth used to be esteemed, expected, but the culture we live in has changed. We are faced with moral and spiritual relativism, both lack truth. When society has no ultimate standard to base things on, no absolutes, they will be adrift in a sea of amorality, not knowing what shore they will end up adrift on.

This philosophy cannot improve ones quality of life, it neutralizes ones moral growth. Do away with absolute truth and all you’re left with is man’s opinions that change in every culture. The prophet Isaiah wrote, “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness…Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and clever in their own sight!” (Isaiah 5:20-21). This is what we are facing in our society today.

You can’t identify a lie when you do not remember what was said before to measure it by. Politicians know this, this is why they confidently talk fast, the same can be found inside the church. If you cannot remember what is said you cannot know if anything spoken is accurate.

We do not measure truth by our heart but by a greater standard, one that uses objectivity and is not subjective to human feelings and emotions. People do lie to themselves about all kinds of things.

When we see people say one thing and do another on a consistent basis it means they don’t really believe what they are saying ... as the old saying goes about politicians, don’t listen to what they say but watch what they do.

Francis Schaeffer commenting about modern mans thinking wrote that he “no longer believes in truth but only in Hegelian synthesis, Modern man thinks truth is unfindable” (The Church at the End of the 20th Century). God has communicated to us Spiritual truth, which, by its nature, has to be absolute

There are truths in the world we live and there are spiritual truths we can live by; these are found in God’s written Word (the Holy Bible), these words are eternal and do not change, it alone is our authority for truth. It is perfect, pure, living and powerful, holy, inerrant, infallible, and forever settled in heaven.

the fact remains all the different ways can’t be true, only one way is true and the rest are all false. One of the main lies promoted today is that there is not “one faith,” but "faiths."  Meaning, religious organizations, religions of all persuasions are all the same in relationship to God. We can find these very same concepts in books from spirit guides “Christ takes many forms with different names...” ( pp. 83-84‘A Course in Miracles manual Dr. Helen Schucman).

Paul speaks of “the church of the living God,” as “the pillar and ground of the truth.” And then tells us its priority “God was manifested in the flesh” (1 Tim 3:15-16). The church is to be a place where one can go to get spiritual truth. If you are in a church that denies this core teaching then you are being lied to about Jesus Christ.

How can we be salt and light to a darkened world if we don’t believe what the Bible about who Jesus is. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. (Heb.13:8)

How do we know what it is spiritual truth?  By archeology, manuscript evidence, and fulfilled prophecy. Truth is connected to our faith, and our faith is based on actual facts from history; of God and people. It is not a blind belief hoping that it is true. It can be proven to anyone willing to enter an unbiased search. John introduced Jesus as being “full of grace and truth,” Jesus said “thy word is truth.” It is the word that enlightens man to what is true. Christianity is about Christ (Jesus) and Jesus was all about the truth.

In the church Biblical knowledge, understanding of the core doctrines is at an all time low, people can say anything from the pulpit and the congregation believes them.

Prov. 13:5 “A righteous man hates lying, but a wicked man is loathsome and comes to shame.”

Paul asked the Galatian church that he was correcting on the keeping the law “Have I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth? (Gal 4:16) He was showing them his love by telling them the hard truth. The same way a loving parent knows what is best for their child. the creator of all knows what is best for us. Only Jesus has the highest moral good.

Too many churches do not promote or train people to discern because they do not want to be questioned on something they may say. This stops believers from “Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine” (1 Timothy 4:16). We see people in all walks of life testing peoples word s and products. They train tellers to check money in the banks, they test used cars when they are being traded in, nearly everything in life is scrutinized to see if it meets the criteria. But the when it comes to the most important matter of all, our spiritual life, people are willing to negate this same testing. No grounded, mature believer will ever say NOT to test something to see if it is true or false.

The church has the truth and is to live by it and uphold it to others. There’s always been a problem for God’s s people in distinguishing liars. God told Israel "Do not trust in these lying words” (Jeremiah 7:4) but they continued to “trust in lying words that ‘cannot profit” (7:8).

The false prophets spoke of hope and peace that never came. God called the people back to the right way to have true peace and rest but they rejected his offer. He even appointed a watchman who exposed the lying prophets but they would not listen to his warnings. Does this sound familiar? Testing prophecy is not an option, it is a New Testament command for our safety (1 John 4:1). It is especially important in the last days.

The Bible exposes errors and lies, not promotes them. When we accept lies we lower the standard of life in our culture and the church.

You cannot expect truth to just appear. How do we learn truth?  You can’t learn truth from an “experience,” or use your heart when Jesus warned of what is in it (Mt.15:18-19); neither can you “feel” error or truth.

According to the Lord Truth is Absolute, meaning it cannot change. It is true at all times, in all places, for all people. Truth exists and is true whether we believe it or not. We live in absolutes. We all need air to breathe, just as we all need food and water. Water is wet not dry, Time only moves forward, everyone is getting older. These are truths of nature that we have facing us everyday in our reality.

Proverbs 30:5-6: “Every word of God is pure; he is a shield to those who put their trust in Him. Do not add to His words, lest He rebuke you, and you be found a liar.” “Every word of God” can be trusted, but men need to be tested.

God’s Word continues to be the same eternal absolute truth to all generations, The Holy Spirit’s purpose is to lead us into spiritual Truth that can only be found in His Word; not other books that came centuries later, no matter how spiritual they may sound. Truth is an essential ingredient in the Christian life, without it you cannot live like Christ wants you to. The Psalmist wrote (25:4-5) “Show me Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me.” As disciples our priority for ourselves is to be in the truth. So the question is, why are we offended at when we hear it? Because truth demands change.

“The entirety of Your word is truth” (Psalms 119: 160). We need to settle whether all the truth we need for our spiritual life has been given in the Bible? This Truth cannot free anyone unless it is applied. Falsehood by its nature leads us away from truth. Jesus said He is the truth; and He put this statement in between calling himself the way and the life (John 14). Once you know WHO is the truth you know where to find it. Since Jesus said He was the truth, accepting what is false leads us away from Jesus. It does not matter if someone says I love the Lord, what is false cannot help expand this love but only make it cold. So if you find yourself on the path of listening to someone’s words not found in the Bible you are not on the path of truth, it will eventually catch up to you.

As Paul corrected the Galatians: you show your love to people by communicating the truth, you show you do not care for them be giving out what is false.

False speakers are found in politics and false teachers are in the church. The rule of thumb has been that there is more liars in politics than there is in religion, not so anymore, It has caught up. It’s been long said that the flood of false teachers control over the church is a judgment from God because we do not pursue the truth he has given us. So we have prophets claiming they have “new truth” and people accept it without questioning it being false.

In politics its expected to lie, in the church its expected to use certain types of manipulation to produce faith so people will be more willing to give their money to God, (its always about the money going to them). But faith must be connected to what’s true or its not real trust. In politics, if you disagree you can vote, in the church you also can disagree and vote with your feet, you leave. However there is a difference, because it is the body of Christ the pastor and leadership should be told why.

There are religions and religious men that have rationalized justified lying, this too is found in the church. Pride keeps one from seeing, receiving the truth it also prevents them from telling it.

We have false promises on money and healing that are continually promoted on “Christian TV.” Paul writes of the “useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that Godliness is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself” (1 Tim. 6:5). We can see the commands that are disobeyed bring the results we are seeing today. Why is it that those that preach lies are more often to be found in the biggest, most well known ministries? Because those in leadership negate contending for the truth, it brings a lack of accountability.

People lie about the miracles that have been done by their hands or the amount of people they have brought salvation to. They want to think better of themselves, that they are vessels God is powerfully using so they make little white lies up for improvement of their image, They attract the unsuspecting and naïve to support them which compounds the problem. Those lacking knowledge of the Bible make not only individuals but congregations easy prey.  When they are already have a propensity for experiences, it continues to move them away from being grounded in Scripture. When the people are not gathered to hear the word expounded in truth but for a spiritual experience, they have already removed themselves from the truth. We should never forget that God’s power always works in and through His Word of truth. If a preacher is not preaching the truth on the core doctrines you are not going to see God’s power exhibited in healings and miracles, He cannot work with that person. We have to be aware of the telling of tall stories. When there is no striving for accuracy and there is a constant deviation from truth, something else operating. Prov. 14:5 “A faithful witness does not lie, but a false witness will utter lies.”

Jesus said Matt 5:36-37: "Nor shall you swear by your head, because you cannot make one hair white or black. "But let your 'Yes' be 'Yes,' and your 'No,' 'No.' For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.”

In the Jewish culture they swore by what is holy to what they were saying was the truth. We should not have to resort to this. Our reputation should be known as one who tells the truth. Does this mean that we can’t make mistakes? No, but it does mean we strive to be accurate in our words and our deeds should match.

James repeats the same thing Jesus did, Jms. 5:12: “But above all, my brethren, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath. But let your "Yes," be "Yes," and your "No," "No," lest you fall into judgment.”

It’s not just about a yes or no answer but it is integrity that forges a persons life, and reputation.

God tests people; He tests His people. Ps. 11:4-5 “The LORD is in His holy temple, the LORD'S throne is in heaven; his eyes behold, his eyelids test the sons of men. The LORD tests the righteous, but the wicked and the one who loves violence His soul hates.”

Jer. 20:12: “But, O LORD of hosts, you who test the righteous, and see the mind and heart”

The heart is the matter. Living by the truth is not about good intentions. Too many times I hear my heart was right in what I did.

Jer. 17:9-10 "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it? I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings.”

There are times we do not know why we do things. We can train ourselves in righteousness and will often act in a godly manner, but not always. It’s not about good intentions. Cain had good intentions but God found it unacceptable. You can be sincere and have good intentions and still be wrong. The Pharisees had good intentions when they added more laws to the laws of Moses to keep people from sinning, But Jesus told them they negated the word of God by it. Good intentions by itself is not what God wants from us.

God wants us to have a right motivation as well as obedience, which are connected to exercising faith, trust in Him. In other words obedience is not always connected to good intentions, but faith is connected to obedience.

Heb. 11:6: “But without faith it is impossible to please Him.” Heb. 4:2 Speaking of Israel’s journey “but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.” God is first looking for faith, trust in Him, in what he said, wrote.

Jude 1:5 “But I want to remind you, though you once knew this, that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.” God delivered them physically but because they had no faith in the journey they were judged.

Heb 10:38 “Now the just shall live by faith; but if anyone draws back, my soul has no pleasure in him.”

Paul explained that he wanted to do what is right but fails because of the presence of indwelling sin. Rom. 7:18-19:“For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice.”

1 Cor. 13:3: “And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.”

God is Testing the church

We hear doctrine divides, No, it unites. It has us fused to the truth. “Whosoever ... abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, HATH NOT GOD” (2 John 1:9 KJV). It is the New Age Movement, the Occult that teaches people to dispense with doctrine. Thinking is a requirement not an option.

When pastors and leaders can’t tell you what is wrong and avoid entering a controversy that has to do with defending the faith what does that tell about them? Jesus wrote to the church of Ephesus who tested those who “say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars” (Rev 2:2). There’s honor in testing peoples words and stories. Truth trains us in discernment. If you wonder why the church has little discernment its because of the small amounts of truth coming over the pulpits,, and even less application to what we are facing today.

We are commanded to “Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.” 1Thess. 5:21-22). When people tell you NOT tot test what they say, then you know something is wrong. They are telling you to disobey the Lord, it is a command for your protection. And here is one of the reasons. “do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. (I Jn 4:1). Those who are deceived will always deceive others.

This state of God’s people is not something unheard of before, Israel contended against the same matters: “They have spoken lying words in My name, which I have not commanded them. Indeed I know, and am a witness, says the LORD” (Jer. 29:23).

What makes people follow these false teachers and prophets? They like what they hear, they like their personality. What took place in the past has a way of repeating itself. In Jer 5:31: “The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule by their own power; and My people love to have it so. But what will you do in the end?” What will you do? It is the end and we are seeing it all increase.

If you neglect the truth you will not grow into a godly person, it will only bring more carnality and more deception. To stay in the truth takes effort, to accept what is false is far easier. We must accept the fact that anyone can be removed from teaching the truth if they are not consistently staying in the word and trying to live by it. This why Paul instructs us “Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine” (1 Timothy 4:16). That we are to rightly divide the Word of truth” lest we come to wrong conclusions and then build on those. As Paul wrote to the Galatians that were dealing with the confusion of keeping the law. Gal.5:5-7: “You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump.”

The world is continually being influenced by what is false, we need the truth for our survival in the times we live in. Jesus prayed in John 17:17: “Sanctify them by your truth. Your word is truth.” This Word is the same eternal absolute truth to all generations that keeps us apart from the world’s influences. We may change, our culture may change, but the word does not, it can be trusted for all that we need in life. The first Church grew, by being bold and presenting the truth, contending openly for the faith. Through their boldness they convinced untold amounts of pagans and heathens of the truth, because they believed ‘The entirety of Your word is truth” (Psalms 119: 160). Do we? We should not be living as if we are still searching for the truth. If you are a real believer in Christ you have it. We should draw from the depths of Christ’s riches, otherwise how can we bring it to others?

Why is the word read less and studied in the church? The answer will make you uncomfortable, Jesus said in John 14:24: “He who does not love Me does not keep My words.” It has to do with what Jesus said would happen in the end, our love growing cold. The result is a lack of honesty. “Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds” (Col. 3:9)

After mentioning various sin Eph. 4:20-23: “But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind” Our being changed can only come by walking in the Spirit and not in the old nature.

Lastly God makes the point that those who live a lifestyle of lying are no different then other sinners who live without God. Rev. 21:8 "But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."

It’s time to return to the truth, allowing it to convict us in our lives first so we can give answers to others and bring real comfort to them. When we start demanding truth and nothing less, then things will change in our country and the church. If we do not lift up God’s standard we will continue to get fallen men’s standards.


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