April 13, 2008
Believe What You Know, Not What You Hear
“Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming.” Ephesians 4:14 (NIV).
I was thrilled to hear the good news. I had a bad case of winter blues, and the television weatherman had forecasted unusually warm spring-like days for the entire week. However, as I was driving to church that evening, I heard quite a different forecast on the radio. The announcer predicted cold days ahead; highs in the forties, and rain.
What happened to the amazing forecast that the TV weatherman had predicted? I felt my spirit drop as I thought about yet another cold week to endure. Immediately I shared my disappointment with my husband and friends, even convincing them that the weather forecast had obviously changed.
But as I watched TV later that evening, the weatherman was predicting sunny weather once again. Beautiful days, mid-seventies, with the possibility of breaking a record high.
What?! I was so confused. I finally determined that the radio must have been playing the wrong forecast by accident. Somehow, I think the wrong buttons had been pushed, and the wrong information was sent out over the air for thousands of people to hear…if they had heard the television forecast too, they were surely as perplexed as I was.
I had heard information that contradicted what I knew to be true, but since it seemed to be from a trustworthy source, I readily believed it. I even shared that information with friends and family, only later to realize that I had been misled and misinformed.
In the same way, today’s culture does an excellent job of sending us wrong information, misleading us about right and wrong, and convincing us that their opinion is accurate.
Take tolerance, for example. The term “tolerance” seems to imply, by today’s standards, that anything and everything is morally equivalent. Society tries to convince people that the truth is relative, open for interpretation, and apt to be changed if anyone wants it to be different.
With this in mind, and due to the fact that there is a smorgasbord of beliefs to choose from, it is imperative that Christians stay keenly aware of whether or not we are believing what we know, versus believing what we hear.
The Bible clearly states that God set moral laws for His people, and the outline of what is right and wrong is written with great clarity. Knowing that, do we allow ourselves to be swayed by information that does not line up with God’s Word? Do we follow the crowd, even when it is operating on inaccurate information? Do we act on questionable truths, just because it seems that everyone else believes it to be true?
As believers, we have the incredible responsibility of being sure that we place what the Bible says over what well-intentioned (even trustworthy or respected) people may say. If we doubt that the Bible is the one absolute truth, what other source of truth are we looking to?
1 Thessalonian 5:21 says, “Don't suppress the Spirit, and don't stifle those who have a word from the Master. On the other hand, don't be gullible. Check out everything, and keep only what's good. Throw out anything tainted with evil” (MSG). The thing that is good, is what is written in The Bible – the inspired Word of God.
If you ever question whether or not something you hear is true, and before you share it with others who could be influenced by your statements, check it out against God’s Word. The truth will be confirmed in the scriptures, and that is a source you can believe in.
Dear Lord, help me to be strong in knowledge of Your Word. Give me the inner strength to stand up for what is right in Your eyes, even if it goes against the consensus opinion of what is right and tolerated in the eyes of man. Make me a person who influences others with Your truth. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
i am not but i know I AM by Louie Giglio
Pierced By the Word: 31 Meditations for Your Soul by John Piper
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Watch what you say and do – you never know who you may be influencing.
Stand up for what is right in God’s eyes.
Have I allowed someone to cause me to doubt God or the truth of His Word?
Is it possible that I sometimes send the wrong message to others, and a distorted view of who God is, through my own compromised words or actions?
Acts 17:11, “Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” (NIV)
© 2009 by Tracie Miles. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Monday, 13 April 2009.