“He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say, “You can’t eat from any tree in the garden”?’” (CSB – Read the chapter)
When was the last time you were tempted to do something you shouldn’t have wanted to do? Unless you happen to be reading this just after waking up, I suspect it wasn’t all that long ago. Temptation is everywhere. “Being tempted” is part of our cultural lingo. We talk about being tempted to do this or that freely and easily. Not with things we really think are bad, mind you, but the language is common all the same. It’s like temptation is just a joke. If it is, though, it isn’t a good joke.
“Then Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, ‘If you continue in my word, you really are my disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’” (CSB – Read the chapter)
When Jesus had been arrested and tried by the Jewish religious authorities, they handed Him over to Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea, because they wanted Him crucified and they didn’t have the authority to impose such a sentence. Pilate was an interesting guy, but one we’ll have to talk about another time. What’s of interest right now is that as Pilate questions Jesus to get a sense of who this man was that so enraged the members of the Sanhedrin, he asks a question that rings far more loudly today than it did then: What is truth?
This week as we continued in the third part of our series through 1 John, A Word on Reality, we looked at how we can stand firm in the reality of God against this world’s unrelenting tide of fantasies and their ever more aggressive attempts to move in their direction. If we are going to resist the lies of this world, there is one key thing we must do. Read on to find out what it is.
A Vise-Grip on Truth
For the past couple of summers, Lisa and I have enjoyed the show “Fool Us with Penn and Teller” on the CW Network. It’s a gameshow wherein four different magicians bring their best tricks to try and fool the world-famous magician duo. The challenge is that they’ve been at it for over 40 years and know just about everything there is to know about magic and how to do it. While there are a few tricks we have been able to figure out, there are some that leave us absolutely flummoxed as to how they did it. Any really good magic trick can leave you feeling like maybe there’s more to this world than we know about. Now, of course, no magic show is any more than a cleverly disguised trick, but the intimation of something more is part of its appeal. Still, while the nod and wink of a magician is entertaining, following that rabbit all the way down its hole can lead, as Alice discovered, to more trouble than most of us would care to find. Read the rest…