Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Dancing Around the Truth

Dancing Around the Truth
by David Brenneman

"It's not THAT bad!"  "I mean it's BAD but not THAT bad!" is the view of most of the people of the world.  People might run into what's now termed as 'Karen' type people, both of the female and male variety.  They might shake their heads at what actually makes the headlines as 'bad' but in a moment don't give those news stories a second thought.  The real notion that has happened is called being desensitized to those things.

In 1 John 5 the NASB has a summary title of part beginning with Verse 13 that says "This Is Written That You May Know".
The first of which is that we may know that we have eternal life if you believe in the name of the Son of God.
Next is the knowing that if we ask anything ACCORDING TO HIS WILL, He hears us.  I added the emphasis.  It's not for us to consider God a genie that grants every desire of our hearts.  He goes on to say of the assurance of what's to come when our requests match up with His devine Will.

There's more written in 1 John 5 but the part that stuck out this morning has to do with dancing around the truth is verse 19 and following (NASB).
"We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.  And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we in Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. Little children, guard yourselves from idols."

Many wonder why their lives have such turmoil.  Job likely did.  He's the premier example of a life that took turns that weren't understood as to why.
Many wonder why some seem to get ahead and others struggle in the faith.  I will admit there's been times when I wonder why life has been like it's been for us.  What was the need for us to be where we've been, why did we go through the things that we did.  

What I see in Job's story and in my own is that it's through the challenges of life, the struggles of life, that our growth in Christ Jesus gets deeper.  When we don't take life seriously, when we aren't focused on what it is that God's Will has in mind for us, life goes ways we aren't expecting.

This last Sunday an example was given in the sermon about the growth of the Apostle Peter. From a guy who was essentially a shoot-from-the lip kind of personality to what we read of what he became in 1st and 2nd Peter.  Ever notice something that I only did this morning?  How his personality is very very close to that of King Nebuchadnezzar?  How often are we compared to others in the family we are in.  

The fact of life is this:  There's no dancing around the truth with God, with the need for salvation, with the need for the Church to be the Church.  There's no dancing around the truth with God in that we indeed DO have idols in our world disguised as every 'good' thing from food to every variety of stuff imaginable.

How often are you looking at what you have allowed into your life as being a hinderance to growing in Christ?
Have you gone all in with an employer or promoting a product and haven't realized that it's negatively impacted your walk with Jesus?   Joseph went through many 'employers'.  Yet one thing stood out with him.  He stayed true to the Lord Jesus.  He probably often never understood why some things had to happen in his life.  His life was being developed into a deeper, richer, life in Jesus.

Your struggles and trials are part of what makes YOUR life in Christ deeper and richer.  We are not to be embracing the world.  Scripture says to love not the world nor the things of the world.  Yet we are right up there with those of the world, dancing around the truth that we've set up idols.  It wouldn't be a warning to those in the Church if it wasn't going to keep happening until Jesus returns.  

We often do not look at the consequences of being close to the world as being a problem to Spiritual growth.
Strong, old, trees only get that way by having deep roots that are connected to the ground and deep veins of water.  Shallow trees topple when storms come because they had no firm foundation.

I have often cried when listening to Mark Lowry's song "This Too Shall Pass" because of various things going on in my life.  Things happen and I don't know or understand why.  Prayers are made in earnest and it often doesn't seem like prayers are being answered but I persist in praying anyway.  God's timing is not necessarily our timing...but God is never late, He's always on time.

We can dance around the truth of life but consider that when we face Jesus truth burns away all the fluff and all that remains after being examined by His Truth is what we're left with.  Not our re-defined truth, not our idea of truth, but only His Truth.  Our works will be tested by fire.  Works being the things we've done, the thoughts we have had, the words we have spoken, the time we've spent and how it was spent.  We read of how the Lord examines the thoughts and intentions of the heart.  

We may lie to ourselves in what we do, why we do, and how we do life, but we cannot CANNOT deceive Jesus.

Look at your life and be bold enough to ask Jesus what parts of it does He not approve of!  What needs to go?  What have you allowed to hold a place in your heart and mind that do not belong there, that conflict with your growth in Christ?   We ALL lie to ourselves to make ourselves feel good.  Go down a snack aisle in a store.  Most cannot do so without getting something and justifying it when they shop hungry.

Jesus will not dance around the truth when we give an account of our lives before Him.  He will cut to the chase.  He may have eternity on His side at the day of giving an account but He won't spend eternity getting to the point.  When your life is put to the test, by fire, what will remain?

Some dance around the truth that they need a Savior.  That's the worst form of dancing around the truth.  You have no control over your very breath, how did you come up with this plan of coming to Jesus right before you die?   You think you're a good person...sorry that brand of truth doesn't fly with a Holy God.  Hell has trillions of 'good' people.  God's Truth says we need a Savior who is Christ the Lord Jesus.

Oh how lawyers, judges, and government officials, sometimes even doctors, dance around the truth.  News outlets re-write what's happened to fit the truth they are told to convey.  One of the great oldies of jokes is "it must be true, I read it on the internet".

I was reading in 1 John 4 yesterday and saw how often the word practice appeared.  Paul wrote of practiced sins.  Practiced easily implies those things we intentionally do, regardless of if we should or not.  Be careful of what you practice doing in life.  Some have heard it said "It's better to be silent and thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt".   I see it daily, especially during the end of various sports seasons, how Christian's malign others in the name of a sport.  In Christ there's nothing funny, nothing justifiable, in belittling or berating others.  Dancing around the truth. As it was in a TV show, one person said "we're not laughing at you, we're laughing with you!" The other person seriously said "but I'm not laughing".  To which the first said as the truth hit "then I guess the first one."  

We can dance around the truth all we want but Truth is coming in the form of Jesus.  Truth will be revealed in 7 years of God's Judgments upon Israel and mankind.  Truth will test our lives by fire to see what's left that actually was FOR God.  Truth will reveal who is IN Christ and who wasn't.

There's no dancing around the Truth of Jesus Christ, and our need to be fully devoted followers of Him.

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