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A Big Mistake: Common ‘Truths’


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If something is said often enough by enough people, it is taken as truth regardless of the merits of the statement. It is just human nature to accept something we hear over and over as truth. This is one reason the media and politicians seem to control the truth- they have the biggest voice and can accomplish the task of getting people to believe anything they want. Sadly, the same happens in the church. Here are several common things we hear so often we just believe they must be true:

1. Where two or three are present Jesus is there. This comes from:

For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” Matt 18:20

Truth: Look at the context:

“Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. 16 But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.’ 17 And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector. 18 “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. 19 “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” 21 Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Mt 18:15-21

This isn’t suggesting that Jesus will only be present when at least two gather (under the New Covenant we all have the Spirit in us so we don’t need at least one more person to have Jesus with us) or somehow there is more ‘power’ when two or three gather. Jesus was speaking about how to deal with someone who offends us and the need to bring witnesses if they disagree (this was part of the Law) but what Jesus was really getting at is that the new reality was going from accusing someone to gain restitution per the Law, to a desire to restore the relationship instead. Look at the question Peter asks based on what Jesus said and clearly Jesus wants us to focus on restoration and not retribution. This is what He did for us, isn’t it?

2. “Lord, by your stripes we are healed so I pray that you heal Joe.” This comes from:

But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. Is 53:5

This healing has nothing to do with physical healing when you understand that Isaiah 53 was written about what the Messiah was going to do for us- heal us from our transgressions. What He was healing us from was from our sin state. This isn’t to say we can’t be healed physically and in a sense we will all be healed physically because of His stripes but we can’t use this verse as it is so often used as above. We shortchange the cross when we make it simply about physical healing. Pray for healing but this is not a ‘magic bullet’ to be used to tell God why we should be healed.

3. God works out everything for your good. This comes from:

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Rom 8:28

This is just a matter of fully understanding the premise of the message. Look closely and we find that God isn’t working out everything for OUR good but FOR good. Now look at who will agree it is good- to those who love God AND are called according to HIS purpose. The idea being conveyed here is that we can trust God in everything that happens because He will use it for good. I might get cancer which is not good in any way for me but perhaps because I trust Him and I want HIS purpose to be done, my joy while enduring cancer leads one or more to come to Christ. That certainly would be good!

4. God won’t give us more than we can handle. This comes from:

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. 1 Cor 10:13

First, this is specifically about temptation, not problems and struggles. Second, I do believe God WILL give us more than we can handle because that is when we see His power. This is what Paul was saying in another misused verse:

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Phil 4:13

Paul wasn’t saying this as a positive affirmation or motivational speech- no, His point was that no matter what situation he was in, even if it was way more than he could handle, He trusted Christ. Noah was given more than he could handle- but God did it through him. Moses had more than he could handle- but God did it through him. Peter had more than he could handle on the water- but God did it through him. God isn’t making sure we can handle everything- that isn’t His goal. Instead, when things hit us, even those things we can’t handle, the great I AM is there and handles it through us.

5. If Believers in America humble themselves and ask God to forgive us, He will restore America. This comes from:

if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 2 Chron 7:14

First, this is another classic example of reading into something just as is done with 1 John 1:9. This passage does not mean we must ‘ask’ for forgiveness. But more to the point of this writing, this passage is about the nation of Israel- not the nation of America. Israel was God’s chosen people- America is not God’s chosen nation. This was about Israel getting back on track to be Holy and bring the Messiah, not about abortion being outlawed. We must be careful to use a passage meant for something specific (Israel) and claiming it for our nation. As much as I love this nation and as much as I can see God using it in times past (WW2 for example), this is not a ‘Christian’ nation, and every single Believer could get on their knees right now and it would not cause God to ‘heal’ this land. Why? Because God gives everyone free will and He won’t force Himself on any individual or nation. Would it be great if every Believer followed the Spirit? Yes! We would impact people IN the nation and possibly impact how people vote but it wouldn’t turn America into a ‘Christian’ nation.

These are just some examples, but the greater purpose of this writing is to implore you to verify everything, no matter how many say it and how often they say it. Seek truth from the Spirit and outright challenge what you hear. Go to the Spirit and tell Him you no longer trust anything you have ever heard and just want to know what is true. I guarantee the Spirit will take you on an incredible fact-finding journey that will leave you dazzled!

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