In chapter 11, Paul addressed the problem of false teachers. This is a subject that always gets my attention because the enemy is always so active in this area. Think of it. He has this act down cold. He used false teaching to persuade Eve to disobey God’s clear instruction to not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. “Nah. You won’t die. God just doesn’t want you to be like Him!”
The enemy has made studying man’s weaknesses his life’s work, and uses his centuries of study to capitalize on them. He uses them to craft lies that will draw us away from God. Some lies seem patently ridiculous and easy to spot, others are incredibly complex and difficult to decipher. Different lies appeal to different people.
One lie that the enemy uses very effectively is the lie that it matters when people think we are stupid, or as Paul said in chapter 11, foolish. Give me a break. Really? Why do I care if someone thinks I’m an idiot for devoting my life to proclaiming the Good News? But here’s the thing. I want to be liked. I want to be accepted by the cool kids. You probably do, too. That’s a very human characteristic, and the enemy uses that quirk to try to make us shut up.
So the next time you’re made to feel “less than” because of your faith in Jesus, consider the source. Remind the enemy that you are an heir with Jesus, and that his destruction is coming soon.
Be bold in living out your faith. Don’t be shy in fulfilling the calling God has given you. He is the only One who’s opinion of you should shape your behavior. Not some internet troll or anybody else.
In the last half of chapter 11 Paul told of how he had been beaten, stoned, shipwrecked and several other life-threatening hardships because of his refusal to sit down and shut up, and his desire to take the Gospel as far as He could.
You and I have the opportunity, because of the time in which we live, to take that message LITERALLY to every country in the world, from the comfort and safety of our homes. Since I began podcasting on November 13th, 2004, I doubt if there is a country on the planet that at least one person has not downloaded one of the Lifespring shows. If God can use me, he can use you. If we do not follow Jesus’ last command to go into all the world and make disciples, we have no excuse. I don’t want Him, when I stand before Him, to say, “You had one job. What happened? Why didn’t you use the tools I gave you?”