OH, the Lies We Believe
By: Lisa Robertson
If you’re one of the unlucky ones who longs to be liberated from Satan’s bondage of sin but are overpowered by the inner voice that tells you that you are too far gone for God, trust me when I tell you that I understand. The bad news is that once Satan takes us captive to do his will, he will take us farther than we ever intended to go and keep us longer than we intended to stay. He points to our failures and plays them on a loop in order to heap condemnation, shame, and guilt on us. He desires to overpower our minds. He rightfully points out that sometimes the consequences of our sin can stay with us for a very long time, maybe even for a lifetime. His goal is to plant the seeds of hopelessness in our hearts, seeds that will choke out the seeds of hope if we are not diligent to pull up the weeds that germinate from those seeds and cast them into the fire.
The problem is, he lies. The story he tells us is a bizarre and wicked fairy tale. It is designed to force us to cower in the corner of our hearts and cover our heads in a vain effort to hide from God. Satan knows, better than anyone, that when he takes us captive to do his bidding that the only antidote to his poison is the love and mercy of God, so he throws up any number of smokescreens to cloud our vision. (2 Timothy 2:25)
If his voice is the only one we hear, we will get a skewed view of who God is and how he views sinners. Satan tries to convince us that it is impossible for us to approach God because God keeps a tally sheet of our sins. We know that we are guilty before him. We are dirty. The slime of sin clings to our flesh. And since we all know that sinners will be cast into the lake of fire, we assume that our destination is hell too and there is nothing that can be done about it.
But is that really the story of the Bible? Would you be surprised to find out that God’s love for you is so intense and passionate that he would do the unthinkable? That he would leave the glories of heaven and live in a human body, only to die a horrible death in order for you to know the depth of his love for you? No matter what your inner voice tells you to the contrary, this is precisely the story of the Bible.
Did you get that? Christ didn’t die for you and me because we were pretty good people. He didn’t die for us because we deserved mercy. Instead, he died when we were “powerless.” He died for us because we are wicked and sinful. He died for you because you are addicted to pornography. He died for you because you committed adultery. He died for you because on your worst day, right in the midst of you committing the most disgusting and revolting sin imaginable, he loved you then. And he did this in order to “demonstrate his own love for us.”
If you doubt this, just take a few days, and read the Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. You will see Jesus (who is the exact image of God the Father) pronouncing scathing judgement on people. But it may shock you to discover that his condemnation was reserved for those who were religious and self-righteous. You won’t find him pointing an accusatory finger at the people caught up in things like sexual sin and greed. It may shock you to find out that his compassion and mercy were dispensed freely on people who the religious people had rejected – people like you and me. People who were caught up in their addiction to sin because Satan had used the preachers and teachers to tell lies about God’s desire to pour out his grace into your broken and wicked heart. He took the greedy, adulterous, and disabled people by their trembling hands and gently guided them into his kingdom.
Your gut may be telling you to run from God because you are so guilty. If that’s your view of God, you didn’t get it from him or his Bible. That comes straight from the pits of hell. The Bible actually makes a different plea – that God is clearly calling your name. He desires you! He is commanding you to turn around and to stop following the one who hates you and desires your destruction and to run, instead, to the one who has already demonstrated his passionate love for you.
Your healing will not begin until you make this turn. Trust me! I know about this firsthand. Go ahead and repent! You will find that you won’t have to wait long for God to do a mighty work in you. The changes he will make in you will begin immediately.
Believe me when I tell you that it’s worth whatever it costs you and me to turn to God. You will lose nothing of value. Not one single thing.