“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, 3 and every spirit that does not confess that[a] Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God,” I John 4:1-3a, NKJV.
I have a confession to make: I strongly dislike rollercoasters. I avoid them at every opportunity, at every amusement park. Not only do they make me sick and cause severe headaches, the anxiety as the cars tick up the big hill and then plunge down the other side is more than I can accept as “amusement.” It may stem from childhood nightmares as I rode rollercoasters back when they just had roll-down bars and those never really made me feel secure.
On a recent family vacation, we decided that I would try some of the roller coasters at the park. When I sat down in the first one, the attendant said, “Please fasten your seatbelt.” What a novel idea! They put seatbelts on a thrill ride. This gave me a sense of security as I realized I could only slide in the seat as far as the seatbelt would allow. The same safety harness that I am required to use in my car is now on an amusement ride. Once I had clicked the seatbelt, I tugged on it. I pulled it snugly around my waist and I pulled the shoulder strap. I wanted to be sure it would not come undone. Then the attendant came by again, and he checked the belt to make sure it was working properly. I did not doubt that the seatbelt was there for my safety; I just wanted to be sure it worked.
Testing the spirits is similar to tugging on that seatbelt. God’s Word works, and it keeps us secure from danger in this life, but sometimes, we need to tug on it and make sure we know it’s working. We need to study out doctrines and learn more about the gracious God we love and serve, and we do that through putting pressure on the teachings we are receiving. If they are from God, they stand firm and hold. If they are not, they will crash and burn and not be able to withstand the pressure of the light and truth in our lives. Personally, I prefer the seatbelt that is going to keep me safe and secure as I ride this roller coaster of life, so I am glad God’s Word stands! I am also thankful for the attendants in life—those pastors, teachers and counselors—who faithfully proclaim the truth and gently tug on that seatbelt for me to give me the added security of knowing the truth stands and they are standing with me upon it.
Thought-provoker: Are we secure in the truth and testing the teachings that come into our lives to be sure they line up with God’s Word?
Abba, thank You that Your Word stands and is the seatbelt that keeps us secure in this life. Please help us to check the spiritual seatbelt and make sure we are secure in the truth today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Check out Tammy’s devotion books at http://www.amazon.com.