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People Who Hate Truth Will Believe Lies

2 Thessalonians 2:11-12
For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness. (NIVUK)

These verses follow Paul's statement, "They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved." (2 Thessalonians 2:10b), combining to give a powerful message of what will happen just before the Lord Jesus returns. The storyline is that people who refuse to love the truth of the gospel will perish. It will be just because God will highlight their 'truth refusal' by providing an immensely enticing lie for them to believe and obey. As they obey they will demonstrate the wickedness in their hearts showing that God is just in His judgement.

Does this mean that God is in some way unfair, unkind or unforgiving? No! God's judgement is totally just and transparent. While God's Word is potent in alerting us to wrong thoughts and attitudes (Hebrews 4:12) so that we might run to Him in confession and repentance, His judicial sentence is passed on our actions and words which demonstrate that we have believed lies (2 Corinthians 5:10; Jude 1:14-15).

Every temptation is a test allowed by God, not to make the righteous do evil, but to show that they do love the truth by resisting the lie or repenting when they realise their sin. But for those who hate the truth, at the end of time God will send a lie of such magnitude that their evil desires are empowered to do monstrous things (James 1:13-15), like a drunken man clutching a runaway horse careering headlong to disaster. God is not tempting the truth-hater to sin: sin is already deeply entrenched in the heart. The delusion just exposes the nature of the heart and validates God's judgement as being right.

Already the wicked will believe many lies, and history has shown how people can be mesmerised by powerful leaders into sinning with little conscience. But this end-time scenario is of a massive movement of wickedness stirred up by someone who is so hatefully anti-Christ. The arrival of the Lord Jesus will expose the lie but it will be too late (Revelation 1:7). The only protection against that great delusion, and all the little ones before that time, is to know and love the truth and desire a greater fellowship with the Lord Jesus (who is the Truth). That is why God's Word was written and is read all over the world - so that we may know the truth, embrace what it means and obey what it says (Psalm 119:11; James 1:22-25) – bringing assurance of our saving relationship with Jesus Christ. Word@Work is just one way to pass on that message: read it, do it and pass it on.

God of truth and justice. Thank You for always being fair and right according to Your Word. Forgive me when I believe lies and do evil, although I thank You for alerting my conscience so that I can repent and be forgiven. Please help me to welcome Your Word into my heart to shape my life-decisions, and to encourage others to do the same as we await the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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© Dr Paul Adams