Don’t Believe the Lies of the Enemy

1 Timothy 6:3-12

6:3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
6:4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,
6:5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
6:7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
6:8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
6:11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

We’ve talked many times about how there is a lot of false doctrine in the world. Whether it’s coming from TV, on the radio, the internet, a book, or a pulpit, we have to guard against this and make sure we’re following the true Word. The first test is always Jesus.

1 John
4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. 4:2 Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 4:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. 4:5 They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them.

The world has itching ears and they’re seeking people that will tell them what they want to hear. Don’t be like them. Look to the word first as the source of truth. Let it guide and cleanse you, rather than trying to use it as a salve or makeup to cover things up.

They can make it sound very convincing. They can pull out a verse here or a word there and twist it to make it sound like they’re right. That’s why you have to get into the word for yourself, and not just part of it. The whole word holds together as one complete message. You can’t take one little piece and make it say what you want. You can’t know it all at once, and you’ll learn that you have some things wrong as you go along your way, but the Spirit will guide you if you open your heart and mind.

Isaiah 28:9-13
28:9 Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. 28:10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little: 28:11 For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. 28:12 To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear. 28:13 But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.

When we take the whole word into our hearts, it gives us rest and strength because it tells us how Christ has already won the victory and prepared a place for us. If we just look at the Bible as a book of rules, we can build a fine looking house of cards, but it won’t hold up in times of trial because it doesn’t have the right foundation.

One popular lie going around now is what some call “abundance ministry”. Basically, they teach that if you are doing what you should, then God will bless you with worldly goods. Some even go so far as to say that God has to bless you, like you are somehow forcing God.

God may give you blessings here on Earth, but whatever He gives you is for one purpose. God’s goal is to save your soul and prepare you for eternity, not to pamper you while you’re here. These folks are a perfect example of taking a part of one verse and twisting it out of recognition.

10:9 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

So you see how they lifted one part of one verse out, but pay attention to what Jesus is really saying.

10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. 10:12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. 10:13 The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. 10:14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.

Just because there’s a wolf at the door doesn’t mean God has abandoned you, or that you have done something wrong. It may mean that He wants to show how He can save you from the wolf.

When we trust the Lord, we can have His peace in all situations. It can be scary and hard to let go of the reins when we seem to be heading toward a cliff, but we have to turn everything over to God and let Him rule our lives.

4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. 4:12 I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

One of the biggest lessons God wants us to learn here is to let go and let God work in our lives. He will provide what you need. That may not look at all like what you want. We have to trust His word and know that He will take care of us.

That’s not to say that we’re to just sit back and do nothing. You see Paul is saying that he has also learned to be hungry. We have to want to seek His will and follow where He leads. To update an old saying “When a farmer prays for rain, God expects him to say Amen with his tractor”.

It can be easy to get our focus on the things of this world. When we’re cold or hungry or scared, those are powerful drives. Fear of want can also make us slaves to worry. Worry is a sin, because it shows that we don’t trust God. We have to let God work in us. He will help us learn to lay our troubles down before Him.

6:27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? 6:28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: 6:29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 6:30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? 6:31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 6:32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

If you’re looking at some great problem and you don’t think there’s any way you can solve it, you’re probably right. You have to take that problem and compare it to how great God is. He is interested in every one of us. Whether your problem is given to you by God or you’re just reaping the harvest of some seed you’ve sown, God will help you reach the other side.

People chase after the things of this world thinking that will bring them happiness. They say
“ If only I had that new job, or a new car or a new house I’d be happy”, but that is a lie of the enemy. You are made to be in fellowship with God. It is built in to every heart. When we try and replace God with things, it can never bring any lasting joy. We’re told that covetousness is idolatry. That is, when we focus on what we want or have instead of God, that becomes the same as a heathen bowing down to a lump of wood or gold.

6:12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. 6:13 Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield ourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. 6:14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. 6:15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. 6:16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? 6:17 But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. 6:18 Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.

We are not to be servants, that is slaves, to the dead things of this world. We are to yield ourselves to God and He will guide us into true life.

Many read this and think it’s just a warning to the rich. You don’t have to be rich to worship money. I know when I had the least money in my life, chasing it consumed a lot of my thought and energy. Whatever we have in this life is just a tool. If God has given you money, you need to thank God and find His purpose in it. If He has given you lean times, you need to thank God and find His purpose in it. God doesn’t care what we have. He’s trying to teach us to properly use what He has given us.

12:15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. 12:16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: 12:17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? 12:18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. 12:19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. 12:20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? 12:21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

The rich man thought he had safety in his abundance. Rather than seeking God’s will for the bounty He had provided, the man sought to use it to live a life of ease. There are times God will have us store up provisions. He had Joseph building barns in Egypt for seven years. The key is to seek and follow God’s will in whatever He provides.
The flesh offers us pride, hatred, lust, envy, and greed. The Spirit operates in truth, love and humility. We have to look at our motives and what we’re allowing to drive us. Before you make some hasty decision or take some rash action, talk to God about it. If He doesn’t answer you right off, step back and take the time to wait for an answer. Very few things are as urgent as they may seem in the moment. Above all, make sure whatever you choose to do lines up with the word of God. You can be certain that God won’t direct you to do something that goes against His word.

5:6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. 5:7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them. 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: 5:9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) 5:10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. 5:11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.

Don’t take some person’s advice just because it goes along with what you want to do. If you don’t know what God’s word says about your situation, dig into it and find out. Then you’ll be able to recognize true, Godly counsel.

Living for God is often not easy. You’ll sometimes be asked to make some hard choices. Always remember what the true stakes are. This world is just a training ground. When you compare some small price you might pay here against the benefit you’ll receive throughout eternity, there is no comparison. We are living in dangerous times. The evil one is roaming about looking for the weak and injured. We have to trust God and help each other to weather this storm.

2 Thessalonians
2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, 2:2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. 2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? 2:6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. 2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. 2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 2:11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 2:12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: 2:14 Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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