Homer Putnam Reeves
Believe a lie and be damned! A working of error is imposed upon those who receive not the love of the truth. This causes them to believe a lie and be damned. (1 Thess. 2:10-12).
The Love Of Truth
“The love of truth” is a highly significant expression. One will never be disposed to accept truth until he possesses a love for the truth. Embracing truth depends almost entirely upon one’s attitude toward truth. If one is disinterested in truth, he will never search for truth.
Truth is to be discovered. “Seek and ye shall find.” Seldom does one “stumble onto” truth. It is imperative that one cultivate a love for truth if he would come to possess truth.
If one possesses not the truth, there is only one alternative. Those who possess not truth are possessors of untruth. They are victims of error. Having failed to embrace truth, they necessarily embrace untruth. The man who holds not truth is a prey to lies, and if one’s faith rests upon lies, he stands condemned.
What Is Truth?
Here is a question of fundamental importance. By way of comparison, all other questions are quite insignificant. Jesus answers, “Sanctify them in the truth: thy word is truth.” (John 17:17). The word of God is truth!
Man discovers truth as he becomes familiar with the word of God. Apart from God’s word, man must ever grope in error and be ever victimized by lies. Jesus declared, “If ye abide in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth; and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32).
It Seems Right
How often have you heard these expressions? “I think I’m alright, so I’m alright,” or “I feel that I’m saved, and that’s all that matters.”
If either or both of these expressions represent your thinking, you are believing a lie. Both statements are absolutely false, and every man who attempts to live by them is building on the sand. Solomon said, “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man; but the end thereof are the ways of death.” (Prov. 14:12).
Paul is an excellent example attesting to the truth of Solomon’s statement. Paul was satisfied in his own mind that he was doing right in persecuting the followers of Christ. While he thought he was doing right, he was certainly doing wrong. He later said, “I verily thought with myself that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth.” (Acts 26:9).
Jacob believed that his son Joseph was dead. He believed a lie. He acted upon this false belief and mourned for his son. His grief was as poignant as if the boy had actually been slain (cf Gen. 37). Surely, anyone can see the folly of such illusory thinking.
Is your thought that you can do what seemeth good, live a good moral life, and be justified by your morality? If “yes,” you are terribly deluded. Only the blood of Christ can remove your sins. (1 John 1:7).
“I think one name is as good as another.” Did you ever hear that? If one is naming a baby, a type of flower or species of plant, perhaps one name is as good as another. But in religion it simply isn’t true. There is a name that is above every name (Phil. 2:9).
What would happen if people began referring to an orchid as a cauliflower, and a cauliflower as an elephant ear? What confusion! Why? Because names are words with agreed meaning. They are useful only so long as agreement regarding meaning continues. Having come to agreement on the meaning of a term, one must be exact in the usage of terms. All responsible people know the importance of this.
Christ’s name is above every name. A Christian is a follower of Christ. The name “Christian” is offensive to no student of God’s word. By wearing that name, disciples can be justifiably proud, and thereby constantly proclaim that “in none other (name) is there salvation.” (Acts 4:12).
Do you believe that one faith is just as good as another? If “yes,” you believe a lie! “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Rom. 10:17). “There is…one Lord, one faith, one baptism.” (Eph. 4:5).
Do you believe that justification before God is by faith only? If “yes,” you believe a lie! “Ye see than how that by works a man is justified and not by faith only.” (Jas. 2:24).
Do you feel you have been saved without having learned the truth? One man recently stated that he “got saved” 10 years ago, and then added that he didn’t know anything about the Bible. The man was deluded. It isn’t possible for one to be saved independently of the Bible.
“Every one therefore that hath heard and hath learned of the Father cometh unto me.” (John 6:45). Ignorance of the truth forever precludes conversion to Christ.
Do you believe that if once saved, you are saved forever, and cannot fall? If “yes,” you believe a lie! “Ye are severed from Christ, ye who would be justified by the law; ye are fallen away from grace.” (Gal. 5:4 ASV).
How tragic that one should live in error, build upon lies, and be eternally condemned.