It is very much in the devil’s interests that we despair.  If he can get us to believe these three demoralizing lies that he loves to whisper into our thoughts, our powers for Jesus are greatly diminished.

Lie #1: “You’re a hypocrite.  Sure, you’re serving Jesus.  But you don’t really mean it, you phoney.  You might as well give up.”

Answer: “Whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything” (1 John 3:19-20).  “I do not even judge myself. . . . It is the Lord who judges me” (1 Corinthians 4:3-4).

Lie #2: “You’re a loser.  You’ve ruined your life.  You’ll never amount to anything for the Lord.  You might as well give up.”

Answer: “. . . the poor, . . . the brokenhearted, . . . the captives, . . . that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.  They shall build up the ancient ruins, they shall raise up the former devastations” (Isaiah 61:1-4).

Lie #3: “You’re small.  You’re so buried under the debris of our complex and crowded culture, you’ll never make an impact.  You might as well give up.”

Answer: “God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God” (1 Corinthians 1:28-29).

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7 thoughts on “Three lies we might believe”

  1. David Rails says:

    “Slap”…WoW, Thanks, I needed that! Was just the right message for me at just the right time. Thank you friend.

  2. Jake Collins says:

    i do despair of salvation, but not because of the devil…it is because of god’s words in hebrws 6:4, and about jesus words about the unforgivable sin. thanks a lot, lord.

    1. Rob says:

      I think you might be experiencing the poverty of spirit that is a good indication of redemption or being on the way to redemption.

      Hebrews 6 warns those who don’t care about the issue of salvation (in my view) despite the gospel being close-at-hand in the church. However, for those who are concerned for their souls, Hebrews 7:25 provides the refuge and comfort that is needed.

      The blasphemy against the Spirit is to refuse his testimony to Christ – the very thing you are not doing if you embrace Hebrews 7:25.

      No one is saved by their own righteousness. Only the righteousness of Christ has saving power.

  3. Susan Fisher says:

    What great encouragement from the Scriptures. Thanks, Ray, I need to remind myself of these truths every day.

  4. I have been in danger of believing in all three of these lies at different times in my life. Thank you for the reminder.

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Ray Ortlund

Ray Ortlund is senior pastor of Immanuel Church in Nashville, Tennessee, and serves as a Council member with The Gospel Coalition. You can follow him on Twitter.

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