They speak of you with evil intent; Your adversaries misuse your name.
Misuse Your name.
Yesterday, we talked about the wickedness inside us, but David’s talking about those who do evil against the Lord. People who deny God and misuse His name will experience the Lord’s judgment, and I do not envy them. Respecting God’s name and treating it with reverence requires submission to the sovereign Lord, and many people don’t want to submit.
People prefer subjective truth to objective truth in a “you do you” world. Subjective truth bases itself on “how an individual sees or experiences the world.”[i] For example, I feel cold; therefore, it’s cold. Objective truth bases itself on facts, “has definite correspondence to reality, independent of anyone’s feelings or biases, true for everyone whether people agree with it or not.”[ii]With a population of 331.9 million people in the United States, that equals 331.9 million subjective truths.
“So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32
Jesus lived, died, and came back to life. Over 500 witnesses saw Christ after the resurrection (1 Cor. 15:6). If that many people at that time agreed with what they saw, we can accept it as truth. When 500 people attend a wedding and watch a couple say their vows and commit their lives to each other, no one doubts the validity of the marriage. People may not like that an event happened, but it doesn’t negate that it did.
Following Jesus reveals the truth about ourselves and humankind. God created us before time began for His purposes. Christ died for us, taking on our sins to give us new life. Forgiven and free, heirs to the Lord’s eternal kingdom, we can live abundantly with Jesus. Each day, as we follow God, He transforms us into a new creation, leaving our old life behind and becoming more like Christ.
Subjective truth has a limited perspective and no basis in facts. Objective truth stands the test of time, not shaken by false teachings. Jesus’ resurrection occurred thousands of years ago, and no one can disprove it. Lee Stroebel’s ‘Case for Christ” remains one of my favorite books. A graduate of Yale Law School and journalist at The Chicago Tribune, Stroebel applied his investigative skills to disproving Jesus’s existence. After two years of probing the evidence, he became a Christian.[iii] An atheist who became a believer in Christ, Stroebel continues to share the Good News in any way he can.
Misusing God’s name and not believing in His existence has dire consequences. God will separate the wicked from those who place their faith in Him. Protecting us from evil schemes, the Lord knows the hearts of people. We must keep our eyes on Jesus to maintain peace in this world. Allowing the Holy Spirit to guide and direct us will quickly convict us of sin and keep us on the straight and narrow. Taking the next right step, day after day, leads to a life lived well for the Lord. Following Jesus shows us which steps to take and keeps us from misusing the Lord’s name.
Keep the Son in your eyes.
We lose sight of the truth when we take our eyes off Jesus. Through Christ, He reveals the truth to us. Applying the Lord’s teaching to our lives helps us understand the three truths in an argument: theirs, ours, and God’s. We all sin and fall short of the mark, but Jesus didn’t because of His sovereignty. God knows all the facts, understands the different perspectives, and reveals the truth.
Believing lies causes people to misuse God’s name, becoming an adversary of the Lord. To find truth, we must seek Jesus. Staying focused on Christ’s teachings will help us accept our sinful nature, recognize the lies we tell ourselves, and help us overcome the troubles of this world. One right step at a time will lead to a righteous life.
Like David, we will praise the Lord for His mighty works. Trusting God to protect us from His adversaries and keep us on the narrow path.
- When have you misused the Lord’s name?
- How does following Jesus reveal the truth to you?
- What can you do to keep the Son in your eyes?
Lord, forgive us for misusing Your name. Please help us stay focused on Jesus, applying His teaching to our lives and accepting the objective truth He reveals. Develop a sensitivity to the Holy Spirit in us so that we respond quickly to His promptings, trusting His direction. Let us represent Jesus well as we follow Him. IJNIP. Amen