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Choosing Lies Or Loving Truth

2 Thessalonians 2:8-10
And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendour of his coming. The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. (NIVUK)

It is easy to be deceived if you do not know the truth. Satan is described as a deceiver (Revelation 12:9); his only weapon against God is to convince people that truth is a lie, and lies are the truth. In that way the devil pulls people away from the loving grace of Christ and into a trail of destruction. That contrast will intensify up to the return of the Lord Jesus, as antichrists flex their deceptions and the church proclaims the gospel. Finally 'the man of lawlessness' (2 Thessalonians 2:3) or the 'antichrist' (1 John 2:18-22) will emerge in one last attempt to dethrone God. But the good news is that the Lord Jesus will return to finally defeat every evil lie. The glory of His coming will give darkness nowhere to hide and whatever He says will be transparently true.

But until that day, the agents of Satan, in their many disguises, will mix falsehood with truth in such a way that unrighteousness seems righteous. As Jesus said, false prophets will teach what God repudiates (Matthew 24:11) and false miracle workers will produce all kinds of signs to apparently validate their authority (Matthew 24:24). In this way humanity will be increasingly confused, embracing all that darkness will deliver.

God's final judgement will be a simple matter. All those that love the truth, however imperfectly and with much forgiveness through the grace of Christ, will be saved. But those who refuse to love the truth will perish. The truth is not just a concept: 'the Truth' is the person of the Lord Jesus who embodies all God is (John 14:6). The gospel of grace is the truth about salvation through Christ alone and is the starting point for rebellious people to love the truth. Those who will not welcome the gospel will not welcome Jesus, and He will not welcome them into His eternal home (Matthew 7:22-23).

It should be obvious that the gospel provides the only turning point for humanity, which is rushing blindfold to destruction. The agents of the gospel are those who love the Lord Jesus. It is their testimony, your testimony, about the saving grace of Christ that will make an eternal difference to the destiny of deluded humanity (2 Peter 3:9). We have no mandate to watch passively while the world around us poisons itself to destruction by swallowing lies. We have no divine instruction to stay in our holy bubbles while darkness engulfs the world around us. They cannot wake up to the truth unless we tell them what it is: tell them about Jesus and the miracle of forgiveness through His work on the cross. That is what Jesus commanded (Matthew 28:19).

Gracious God. Thank You that You have not hidden Your truth from humanity but have sent Jesus to be our Saviour. Forgive me for not sharing Your deep desire that all people might be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth. Please give me a potent concern for the souls of those around me who do not yet love the truth, and give me courage to share the gospel with them. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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© Dr Paul Adams