Summary: The Word of God is to be our Source of Truth. What does the Bible say about sin? There are conflicting and confusing messages in the world today. This message is a reminder that the God who made us will enable us to live the life He has called us to live.
What is the measure you use to determine the value of a message like the one you are about to hear?
I mean, how do you evaluate it?
Is the value in a message like this in the speaker’s ability to hold your attention, or to make you laugh, or make you cry, or move you some way emotionally?
It is about being motivated to action?
Let me show you how the Berean Christians evaluated the messages they heard.
“Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.”- Acts 17:11 (NIV)
Wait just a minute!
Shouldn’t everybody just trust the preacher?
Why wouldn’t you just take everything at face value?
How can a person know if what’s being said is true?
There are so many schools of thought when it comes to evaluating the truth these days.
In our contemporary, pluralistic society, some would have us believe that
truth is simply in the eye of the beholder anyway.
Let the listener decide what’s true.
The mindset of some is to say, I get to decide what’s truth for me.
You get to decide what’s truth for you.
On the other end of the spectrum are those people who have chosen to believe whatever they hear.
They just accept whatever they hear as truth.
After all, the person who said it has a microphone strapped to their head, or they had a book published, or they seem to be the authority on a subject.
We need to be discerning about the messages we hear, as we seek to determine what is true and what is not.
Here is the DANGER:
Sin is DECEPTIVE and Satan is a DECEIVER.
That is one of the primary reasons why it is critically important for Christian people, here in the 21st century, to learn to know the truth.
Mature believers must learn to discern, understand, and apply truth.
With so much noise, and so much information, coming from so many directions, how can we decide which of those voices need to be turned up?
Which of those voices need to be dialed down, and which voices should be dialed out?
How do we untangle all the commentary to be able to know what is right and what is wrong, what is true and what is false?
I would propose that We need a SOURCE for Truth.
The Bereans searched the Scriptures - day by day - to check up on Paul and Silas to see if what they were saying was really true.
Why would they do that?
Weren’t Paul and Silas men of integrity?
Couldn’t these guys be trusted?
Paul and Silas were the good guys.
But here is the problem.
• They were human beings.
• They could make a mistake.
• They might misinterpret things.
• They could mislead their listeners.
And because people are fragile.
• They can be deceived.
• They can be deceptive.
People can lead you astray, either intentionally, or unintentionally.
There is no end to the number of misguided religious leaders who have preached heresy, told lies, started cults, and led people astray spiritually.
I suppose you can choose a person to be your source of truth, but that is a dangerous proposition.
A better idea is to follow the example of the Bereans.
They examined the Scriptures to see if what Paul said was true
I think it is always wise to compare what you hear from me, or anybody else, with what you read in the Word of God.
I know I take this responsibility very seriously, but I’m human.
I do my best to interpret the Bible correctly.
I would never intentionally mislead anyone spiritually.
It is important to be in a place where you have a high level of confidence in the teaching that is being done.
But all of us have a personal responsibility when it comes to learning and applying truth.
In a prayer that is known as the High Priestly prayer, Jesus prayed these words…
“Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.” - John 17:17 (NIV)
The Word of God is to be our Source of Truth.
That is the foundation I have chosen to build my life on.
Not only do we need to know what the Bible says…
We need to do what it says.
You can’t do what it says unless you know what it says.
And you won’t know it unless you read it, study it, memorize it, listen to it, meditate on it, and apply it to your life.
Whenever you find yourself listening to a preacher or teacher who is teaching God's truth, it will never contradict the Word of God.