Thursday, November 16, 2017
Psalms 119:25 – 32 I am laid low in the dust; preserve my life according to your word. I recounted my ways and you answered me; teach me your decrees. Let me understand the teaching of your precepts; then I will meditate on your wonders. My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word. Keep me from deceitful ways; be gracious to me through your law. I have chosen the way of truth; I have set my heart on your laws. I hold fast to your statutes, O LORD; do not let me be put to shame. I run in the path of your commands, for you have set my heart free.
Every day we are bombarded with truth alternatives. That’s the politically correct term for LIES. We don’t use that word very much anymore. We certainly don’t recognize them when they come to us disguised as fun, philosophy, or fantasy. Most significant are the lies we believe about who we are, or who we are not. “You’re not good enough. You’re not pretty enough. You’re not smart enough. You’re not talented enough. You’re not…” All Lies! Those declarations of the Enemy are all designed to deceive us and distract us from the truth of what God has declared about us. Satan’s success rate is staggering.
I remember one morning when I received a call from someone who was staggering under the weight of lies. There was no hope in her voice – only despair. Without minimizing the reality of physiological conditions, this was primarily a spiritual issue. It was the multiplied effect of believing lies.
Knowing that this will potentially cause some of you to doubt my compassion and understanding, which would be a lie, I will state this – psychological illness is the result of believing a lie. Somewhere in everyone’s past we chose to believe something about ourselves that was contrary to the truth of God’s Word. Today we are the product of those lies.
In today’s portion of Psalm 119, the author recognized the dangers of deceit during a time of despair. He was laid low in the dust. His only hope was the truth of God’s Word. His soul was weary with sorrow, and his only strength could be found in God’s Word. He recognized that his condition was caused by being deceived and he prayed to God to be made aware of those lies and to be delivered from them. His freedom was guaranteed when he chose the path of truth.
What a powerful section of verses this is. It is so appropriate for so many of us today who are suffering under the weight of sadness, sorrow, depression and despair. Our deliverance is as close as admitting the lies that have caused the condition, which ironically places our deliverance as far from us as possible. Why? Because we deny that what we believe about ourselves is a lie. We are afraid to call them lies, aren’t we? Satan’s deceit is delusional. Our pride does not permit us to believe that we have been duped. We do everything we can to protect our self-image, including calling lies truth. We will not admit that who we are and how we have lived is based on a lie. That would make us out to be liars. Our pride is too strong for that to happen.
But our pride is not stronger than the grace of God. Hallelujah! God’s grace accepts liars and transforms them into people created in the true image of His Son Jesus. God’s truth brings freedom from lies. God’s truth removes all guilt and shame. God’s truth strengthens the weary and gives hope to the hopeless. But it is your choice what you decide to call truth. Just remember – labeling a lie as truth doesn’t make it true, just as calling a dog a cat doesn’t change it into a cat. It’s still a dog, and lies labeled as truth will dog you all of your life.
There are two courses of action you can pursue. Modern psychology says to go back in your life and discover the lie, then deal with it. This is not necessarily God’s course. God says to discover the truth from His word, and He will reveal the lies and conquer them. Satan is lying to you again if you believe you must go back and relive the lies. That only keeps the lie alive and provides the opportunity to falsely identify all or part of it as truth. Jesus wants you to know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
So grab your Bibles today, sit down in a quiet spot, and read the book of Ephesians. If possible, use the NIV. As you read, circle every occurrence of the word “BE”. Then carefully read the truth of what God intends you to be. Choose to accept God’s definition of who you are, and you will be set free.