Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Given Over To A Lie

And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done. They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know God's righteous decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them. ~Romans 8:28-32

Pick up a newspaper today and you can find the above behavior described in article after article. Our culture is becoming progressively more wicked the further we get from God, isn’t it? Romans 1 offers some key insight into this process. It starts when people know about God but don’t thank or glorify Him (vs 21), when they exchange the truth of God for a lie (vs 25) and when they don’t think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God (vs 28).

God’s corresponding judgment isn’t what we might expect. We tend to expect a dramatic outpouring of wrath, such as fire from heaven. Instead, God often simply gives people over to what they want—they want a lie and God gives them over to one. They want to believe their own way is better and He lets them believe it and try it. He gives them over to sexual immorality (vs 24, 26), which is the lie that physical lusts will satisfy you. He gives them over to a depraved mind (vs 28), which is a mind corrupted by sin and unwilling to accept or obey the truth. If you see a person sold out for evil and wonder why God doesn’t judge them, you’ve missed it—God already has judged them by letting them continue unchecked in their wickedness, believing lies about God and lies about themselves.

Being given over to a lie is no joke and no light punishment. It can literally send you to hell.
Sadly, many Christians will acknowledge the horror of being given over to a lie and then turn right around and give their own children over to a lie, willingly, cheerfully, and unapologetically. Five days a week they put their kids on a yellow bus and send them straight to a government-sponsored institution that is dedicated to teaching the antithesis of God’s truths.

I am not criticizing the many dedicated, caring (and often even Christian) teachers that are in the government school system. I think they need to be there. But the children of Christians do not need to be there. The government schools teach children a systematic series of lies, either directly through the teachers and curriculum or indirectly through peer socialization with other foolish children. The children are taught the lie that God does not exist. They are taught the lie that we evolved from amoebas. They are taught the worldview that man is basically good and is only brought down by society, not by the evil in his own heart. They are taught the lie that gender is a social construct. They are taught the lie that sexual immorality in both its ordinary and deviant forms is a fun thing to do as long as you do it safely. They are taught the lie that killing an unborn infant is a woman’s right. They are taught the lie that true femininity means beating the guys, not rejoicing in your uniqueness as a woman. They are taught the lie that being true to yourself is more important than being true to your duty. They are taught the lie that there is no such thing as objective truth.

These lies are having a measurable effect on the church. According to a variety of Barna research studies, two-thirds of young adults in their twenties who regularly attended church as a teen do not currently actively pray, read their Bible or attend church. Are we to attribute this to an epidemic of astonishingly boring pastors? Could it not be because these young people are daily bombarded by lies about God and His principles from ages five to eighteen? In that environment, is it at all surprising that more than half of children raised in church walk away from it as an adult?

Many Christians argue that they send their children to government schools to prepare them for the real world. Friends, handing someone over to lies is not preparation. It is punishment. Every time Scripture talks about someone being given over to a lie, it is a judgment on that person. It is a sentence—sometimes a death sentence. Dwelling with lies is not a nice little training tool meant to prepare Christians for godly living. If you want to prepare your children for life, steep them in the truth. Proverbs 23:23 tells us, Buy the truth and do not sell it; get wisdom, discipline and understanding. Truth, wisdom, discipline and understanding are not found in the halls of pagan, humanistic teachings. They are found in the Word of God.

One other lie deserves mention. Many of us often believe the lie that our actions will not have consequences. We pretend to ourselves that we can sow one thing and reap another. God warns us explicitly not to be fooled in this manner: Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. (Galatians 6:7). You cannot send your child to a godless institution for his whole life and assume that nothing will happen. While it is true that by God’s grace some Christian graduates from government schools do stay in the faith, you cannot count on that. Two-thirds of them do not. Scripture also tells us that when a prudent man sees danger, he takes refuge. (Proverbs 3). Be that prudent man! Don’t risk your kids! Prioritize the truth and determine that they will grow up steeped in and surrounded by the truth. Don’t give them over to a lie.

Written by Raquelle Sheen

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