Lies vs. Promises

  • Randy Karlberg
Open Bible

How many times in the past few months have you said, “I don’t know what to believe?” I am not chastising you for that. As a matter of fact, I have recently uttered that very phrase many times myself! Let’s face it, on any given news outlet we have several different specialists in their own field that are sharing expert advice on how we should live in a COVID crazed climate, and each of them seems to conclude their impassioned plea with a qualification. The doctor, when asked what school should look like in the fall states, “I am not an educator.” The politician, when asked why a certain mandate is not being considered defaults to, “I am not a doctor.” And the business owner questioned as to the precautions in place at their business exclaims, “I am not a politician.” We all understand this response to a certain extent. No one wants to be held liable for sharing their opinion on a topic in which they are not a recognized authority.

But what gets most of us to the point of giving up and just wanting to go back to bed and hope we awaken from this horrible hallucination is when recognized professionals cannot agree on the facts or procedures that should be adhered to. Many times the discourse proceeds in a circular motion only to conclude with exactly opposite conclusions from similarly qualified experts. Thus, we are left with an option of rolling the dice to figure out the direction we should go, or just play Yahtzee! Quite frankly I would even take missing out on a large straight if I could have concurring medical advice that aligned significantly. But alas, we are mystified with perplexing stances that move us to uncertainty and bewilderment. All we have left to utter is, “I have no idea what to believe.”

The common result of massive amounts of contradictory dialogue is confusion. I am not one who feels that confusion is the goal of the recognized experts, but I do feel that there is a sense of comfort for some of those in leadership surmising that no one can hold them accountable because of the lack of recognized clarity. I hold, however, to the knowledge that Satan is behind this confusion and is using it for harmful purposes. He has been in the business of confusion since the beginning! In Genesis 3:1 Satan twisted God’s Words as he spoke to Eve when he said, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” He knew exactly what God said, and he confused the words so as to tempt Eve into doubt and distrust. Actually Jesus Himself speaks regarding Satan in John 8:43-44. Jesus is speaking to the Jewish leaders when He talks about Satan’s character and conduct. “Why do you not understand what I say? It is because you cannot bear to hear my word. You are of your father the Devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” Jesus tells us that confusion and lies are from the Devil and this is his normal mode of operation.

On the other hand, in I Timothy 2:3-6 Paul is writing regarding God’s view of humankind, “This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.” God desires that all people come to know Him through His Son Jesus Christ. He is the only way to God. In John 14:6 Jesus is speaking and He says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” God desires people to know the truth that is found in His Word. He wants each of us to have wisdom as to the present and future. James 1:5-8 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” Asking the Lord for wisdom is a spiritual act of faith. When we ask God for wisdom and direction we are to trust in Him that He will give it to us. The converse reaction is to doubt and feel like we are drifting powerlessly in a boat being tossed and driven by the wind. Is that how you are currently feeling about life?

As believers in Jesus Christ we are given the foundation for our life, and that is the Bible. We need to know God’s Word, spend time in God’s Word, and believe in God’s Word. As Hebrews 4:12 states, “For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” God’s Word changes us! This is the stability of living a life in faithfulness and dependence upon the Lord. We can trust God’s Word to give us direction, faith, and strength as we sail the ocean of life. My advice to you and to myself is this; don’t listen to the lies of the evil one! Believe the promises of the Holy One!