Believe and Live the Truth

Psalms 119:113-115 ESV

“I hate the double-minded,
but I love your law.
You are my hiding place and my shield;
I hope in your word.
Depart from me, you evildoers,
that I may keep the commandments of my God.”

A double-minded person is a person with two minds or souls. He is someone who tries to serve two masters at the same time. He is unable to walk a straight line, for he sways from one side to the other and then back to the other, like someone on a teeter-totter. So he is not really going one specific direction because he wanders back and forth, and so he never gets anywhere, like someone driving on a roundabout continuously without ever leaving it. So he is unstable in all that he does (see James 1:6-8).

If we are true followers of Jesus Christ we should not be like the double-minded. We should love the word of God which should be evidenced by how we live consistently in walks of faith and obedience to our Lord. This is not saying we are perfect people but that we are steady in our walks of faith and obedience and we do not go back and forth habitually between sinning and desiring to serve God with our lives. Sin no longer has mastery over our lives and we are on a steady course of walks of faith and obedience to God.

The Lord is truly our hiding place. Our trust is fully in him and not in other humans and not in the things of this life (this world). And our hope is in the word of God and not in the words of other humans – not in the words of preachers, teachers, politicians, evangelists, the news media, prominent people in our society, and medical professionals, etc. For liars and deceivers abound in all of these areas of life and professions. So we should not put our trust in other humans but in God alone, and in his word.

There are people among us who are morally unclean, who are deceivers, manipulators, opportunists, who are opposite of good and righteous, who practice telling lies, who are not trustworthy, who are egocentric, and who are fakes who fake their Christianity. They are wolves in sheep’s clothing, pretending to be genuine followers of Christ but who are truly evil in nature and whose goal is to destroy the gospel and its messengers. And they have crept in among us largely unnoticed by most people.

So, we need to be people of discernment who can recognize these fakes for who they are, who can observe their lifestyles and listen to their words, and who, in testing them and their words against the word of God (in context) can tell that they are not of God but that they are servants of unrighteousness. On a surface level they may appear as harmless sheep, but underneath they are vicious wolves whose goal it is to lead people astray from the Lord and from his truth to follow after lies and the gods of this world.

And then we need to be people who expose the fruitless deeds of darkness and the lies of the enemy and who teach the truth in contrast to the lies. For example, we are not saved and headed to heaven on a mere one-time profession of faith in Jesus Christ. We must die with Christ to sin, not just once, but daily, and we must walk in obedience to his commands, and we must continue in these walks of faith steadfast until the very end if we are to have salvation from sin and eternal life with God.

[Jn 8:31-32,51; Jn 14:15-24; Jn 15:1-12; Rom 2:6-8; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 11:17-24; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; Col 1:21-23; 2 Tim 2:10-13; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 5:9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:1-5; 2 Pet 1:5-11; 2 Pet 2:20-22; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Matt 7:21-23; 1 Jn 2:3-6,15-17,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10,24; 1 Jn 5:2-3; 2 Jn 1:6; Jas 1:21-25; Eph 4:17-24]

Psalms 119:116-117 ESV

“Uphold me according to your promise, that I may live,
and let me not be put to shame in my hope!
Hold me up, that I may be safe
and have regard for your statutes continually!”

As we walk these walks of faith in the power of God’s Spirit living within us we are going to have times in our lives when enemies are coming against us, when our faith is being severely tested, and/or when the circumstances of life all seem to be piled up against us. And it is in these times, especially, when we need to call on the Lord for the strength to carry on, and for the courage to persevere, and for the wisdom to know what to do and what to say and how to respond to certain people and to our circumstances.

Psalms 119:118-120 ESV

“You spurn all who go astray from your statutes,
for their cunning is in vain.
All the wicked of the earth you discard like dross,
therefore I love your testimonies.
My flesh trembles for fear of you,
and I am afraid of your judgments.”

Now, when we all come into this world we are all born into sin, in the image of Adam (the first man to sin against God). We are separate from God and unable in our own flesh to be acceptable and to be approved by God and to share in his holiness and righteousness. And it is only by God’s grace that any of us can be made righteous. But God’s grace instructs us to say “No!” to ungodliness and fleshly lusts and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives while we wait for our Lord’s return (Titus 2:11-14).

And God’s grace to us, although it is forgiveness of sins, and it is the hope of eternal life with God, it is not that alone, and it is not without stipulations. For by God’s grace, through God-given faith in Christ, we are delivered out of our slavery (addiction) to sin so that we might be slaves of God and of his righteousness. We are crucified with Christ in death to sin and we are raised with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness (Rom 6:1-23; Lu 9:23-26; Eph 4:17-24).

But we now have to walk (in conduct, in practice) according to the Spirit and no longer according to the flesh. For if we walk (in practice) according to the flesh we will die in our sins. We will not inherit eternal life with God. For if sin is what we obey, it ends in death. But if we obey the Lord and his word, that culminates in eternal life with God. For if we say that we are in fellowship with God or that we know God but while we still walk in sin and while we do not obey his commands, well, we are liars.

[Lu 9:23-26; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; Rom 6:16; Rom 8:3-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:26-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Jn 15:1-11; Rev. 2-3; Rev 18:1-6; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15; Matt 7:21-23]

So, we need to take this to heart and we need to believe what the Scriptures teach and we need to not believe the lies of these wolves in sheep’s clothing who are convincing so many people that they can be saved from their sins and be on their way to heaven while they continue in deliberate and habitual sin against God, while disregarding the commands of God and while ignoring the Lord and his will for their lives. For God’s word does not lie. So, test everything you hear against the Scriptures (in context) and then believe and live the truth.

Oh, to Be Like Thee, Blessed Redeemer

Lyrics by Thomas O. Chisholm, 1897
Music by W. J. Kirkpatrick, 1897

Oh, to be like Thee! blessèd Redeemer,
This is my constant longing and prayer;
Gladly I’ll forfeit all of earth’s treasures,
Jesus, Thy perfect likeness to wear.

Oh, to be like Thee! full of compassion,
Loving, forgiving, tender and kind,
Helping the helpless, cheering the fainting,
Seeking the wandering sinner to find.

O to be like Thee! lowly in spirit,
Holy and harmless, patient and brave;
Meekly enduring cruel reproaches,
Willing to suffer others to save.

O to be like Thee! while I am pleading,
Pour out Thy Spirit, fill with Thy love;
Make me a temple meet for Thy dwelling,
Fit me for life and Heaven above.

Oh, to be like Thee! Oh, to be like Thee,
Blessèd Redeemer, pure as Thou art;
Come in Thy sweetness, come in Thy fullness;
Stamp Thine own image deep on my heart.

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