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SermonPeople Deceive Themselves Believing Lies
An all-creatures Bible Message

People Deceive Themselves Believing Lies
 
A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church
 
13 July 2014
 
Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor

Scripture References

Genesis 25:19–34
Psalm 119:105–112
Matthew 13:1–23

People deceive themselves believing lies has been the major problem within human society throughout recorded history, and the problem continues to this very day.
 
Jesus tells us that we are to be perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:48), and since we know that there is no pain or death in heaven (Revelation 21:4), and that we are to pray for this heavenly will of God to be done on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:10); then anything or anyone that supports the corrupted ways of this world with all its violence and bloodshed is part of the lie.
 
Because most of society wants to be part of the crowd and go along with peer pressure, we find that these people deceive themselves believing lies and the corrupt ways of the world around them.
 
Even the patriarchs of the Bible fell into this trap as we are told in Genesis 25:19-34.

19. Now these are the records of the generations of Isaac, Abraham's son: Abraham became the father of Isaac;
 
20. and Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel the Aramean of Paddan-aram, the sister of Laban the Aramean, to be his wife.

As we talked about last week, this is all about marrying one’s relative, which we believe is all part of the worldly system of lies and deceptions.

21. And Isaac prayed to the LORD on behalf of his wife, because she was barren; and the LORD answered him and Rebekah his wife conceived.
 
22. But the children struggled together within her; and she said, "If it is so, why then am I this way?" So she went to inquire of the LORD.
 
23. And the LORD said to her,
 
"Two nations are in your womb;
And two peoples shall be separated from your body;
And one people shall be stronger than the other;
And the older shall serve the younger."

We can’t help but wonder whether all this is the result of not living in the heavenly will of God.

24. When her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb.
 
25. Now the first came forth red, all over like a hairy garment; and they named him Esau.
 
26. And afterward his brother came forth with his hand holding on to Esau's heel, so his name was called Jacob; and Isaac was sixty years old when she gave birth to them.

The name Jacob means “one who grasps the heel” or “deceiver”.
 
And, a deceiver is a person who follows the corrupt ways of the world, which to us means that Isaac and Rebekah, Jacob’s parents, really understood the truth.

27. When the boys grew up, Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the field; but Jacob was a peaceful man, living in tents.

We need to understand that this verse is making a significant difference between Esau and Jacob; Esau was a man of the world, but Jacob was more a man of God, even though he entered this world as a deceiver.
 
This verse is also telling us that Esau was a violent man, but Jacob was a peaceful man.

28. Now Isaac loved Esau, because he had a taste for game; but Rebekah loved Jacob.

From this verse, we can also see that Isaac is an example of the people deceiving themselves believing the lies of the worldly ways around them.
 
Keep these things in mind as we go on with this Bible passage.

29. And when Jacob had cooked stew, Esau came in from the field and he was famished;
 
30. and Esau said to Jacob, "Please let me have a swallow of that red stuff there, for I am famished." Therefore his name was called Edom.
 
31. But Jacob said, "First sell me your birthright."

This certainly isn’t being a loving brother, as the Lord calls us to be; it is being a deceiving brother who is trying to take advantage of his older brother’s weakness.

32. And Esau said, "Behold, I am about to die; so of what use then is the birthright to me?"

Esau might have been very hungry, but he was not dying; but since he was a part of the worldly system, he said what he said.

33. And Jacob said, "First swear to me"; so he swore to him, and sold his birthright to Jacob.
 
34. Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew; and he ate and drank, and rose and went on his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.
NASB

Note that in this case Jacob was cooking a plant food meal, just as the Lord commanded us to eat in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 1:29-30).
 
As we look at Psalm 119:105-112, keep in mind the difference between the people that deceive themselves believing lies, and those who truly want to live in the heavenly will of God.

105. Thy word is a lamp to my feet,
And a light to my path.

The Lord always leads us in the heavenly light of God, and never into the darkness and suffering of this world.

106. I have sworn, and I will confirm it,
That I will keep Thy righteous ordinances.

These righteous ordinances are always in the heavenly will of God where there is no pain, suffering, or death; and He would never teach us to cause pain, suffering, or death upon this earth.

107. I am exceedingly afflicted;
Revive me, O LORD, according to Thy word.

Isn’t this the way the exploited animals must feel and the way the people who care about them feel?

108. O accept the freewill offerings of my mouth, O LORD,
And teach me Thine ordinances.
 
109. My life is continually in my hand,
Yet I do not forget Thy law.

This is the way that peacemaking children of God live.

110. The wicked have laid a snare for me,
Yet I have not gone astray from Thy precepts.

Children of God run into these situations and problems every day, but remain steadfast in the heavenly will of God.

111. I have inherited Thy testimonies forever,
For they are the joy of my heart.
 
112. I have inclined my heart to perform Thy statutes
Forever, even to the end.
NASB

This is the way we all become if we really want peace on earth.
 
In Matthew 13:1-23, we have the story of the “sower and the seed”, which is a perfect example of how most people deceive themselves believing lies.

1. On that day Jesus went out of the house, and was sitting by the sea.
 
2. And great multitudes gathered to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat down, and the whole multitude was standing on the beach.
 
3. And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, "Behold, the sower went out to sow;
 
4. and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up.

Let’s think about this in terms of us telling people the truth about being born again and living in the heavenly will of God, and how we are to be the loving, compassionate, and peacemaking children of God whom Jesus called us to be, and how we are to help free creation from its present corruption, and no longer contribute to the pain, suffering, bloodshed, and death that is so prevalent in the world around us, including the horrible suffering and death of millions of humans and billions of animals every year.
 
How many people do you think would believe it and change their ways?
 
Probably not very many would believe and change.
 
This is because most people deceive themselves believing lies about the corrupt ways of this world.
 
In this particular case, their hardness of heart caused them to reject everything we told them, much in the same way as the birds eating the seeds, or in this case the truth of our message.
 
Let’s go on and look at what happened to other seed that was sown.

5. "And others fell upon the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil.
 
6. "But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.

This is an example of people who accept the part of our message about being born again, but reject everything about living as peacemaking children of God, because they don’t want to change their worldly ways.

7. "And others [seeds] fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out.

This could be an example of people who really hear the truth of our message, and may even want to change, but they soon allow peer pressure to lead them back into the corrupt ways of this world with all its violence and death.
 
But in the next example of the sown seed, we have real hope.

8. "And others fell on the good soil, and yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.

This is an example of the people who really believe and change their life, becoming the peacemaking children of God that the whole of creation anxiously awaits; for they have rejected peer pressure that is part of the worldly system.
 
And Jesus says…

9. "He who has ears, let him hear." 

Let’s go on with our Matthew passage.

10. And the disciples came and said to Him, "Why do You speak to them in parables?"
 
11. And He answered and said to them, "To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted.

We believe that the reason for this is the people’s hardness of heart.

12. "For whoever has, to him shall more be given, and he shall have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him.
 
13. "Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.
 
14. "And in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says,
 
'You will keep on hearing, but will not understand;
And you will keep on seeing, but will not perceive;
 
15. For the heart of this people has become dull,
And with their ears they scarcely hear,
And they have closed their eyes
Lest they should see with their eyes,
And hear with their ears,
And understand with their heart and return,
And I should heal them.'
 
16. "But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear.
 
17. "For truly I say to you, that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it; and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

So Jesus goes on and gives the disciples the explanation of this parable that they ask for. 

18. "Hear then the parable of the sower.
 
19. "When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road.
 
20. "And the one on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, this is the man who hears the word, and immediately receives it with joy;
 
21. yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away.
 
22. "And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns, this is the man who hears the word, and the worry of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.

Jesus’ explanation to the disciples is very similar to the reactions we receive from people when we talk to them about the ungodly and horrible exploitation and suffering of the animals.

23. "And the one on whom seed was sown on the good soil, this is the man who hears the word and understands it; who indeed bears fruit, and brings forth, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty."
NASB

There is no place in the Bible where Jesus ever tells the disciples to give up on telling them about the good news of the kingdom.
 
Even though most people deceive themselves believing lies about the kingdom of heaven we are to bring to earth, we are never to give up.
 
He may tell them and us to move on and tell others, but He never tells us to give up, and the same is true about our telling people about the ungodly plight of animals, because there will be some who will listen and change their lives into the peacemaking children of God.
 
Amen.

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