Good morning and welcome to coffee and the word. I'm Sherry Poundstone. I hope you have a cup of coffee or tea and if you're in the position to have your Word out, that's great too! And then, if you're watching this later or listening to this as a podcast as you're driving, you can maybe do it later.
I want to just let you know that I have been absent for a while. John and I contracted a bug. It was not COVID. We did not have COVID but it was enough to knock me out for a while. I laid low and I just rested. Sometimes I think God does that for me so that I will rest. He doesn't make me sick, but he does allow me to use that sick time as rest time.
What I want to talk to you about in this session and the next couple of sessions is lies. I call it “Liar, liar pants on fire!” because it's about the lies and the deception that the enemy will tell us.
We hear a lot of things that are negative. Some of it might come from us, but a lot of it comes from the enemy. He is real. We're not going to give him any more credit than he's due. But, we have to know the truth so we can recognize the lie.
Have you ever played one of those lottery scratch-off cards? You scratch and scratch and scratch to see what lies beneath. You're hoping that it's something great, but it might be nothing. Just as we scratch off the surface of the card to reveal what’s underneath, we're going to use truth to reveal the lies and deception of the enemy. We’ll be revealing the lies of the enemy and talking about what deception is and what the common lies are that we hear.
In order to live in freedom, we have to know what true freedom means. We have to reveal those lies so that we can understand deception and move right past it and into freedom. We will hear lies about God and about ourselves, about our relationships, and about the world we live in. We have to know the truth to recognize a lie and the truth is in God's word - the Bible. And, you'll hear me say this a lot throughout the teaching. One thing that works in our favor is that Satan is not creative. Man, he does the same thing all the time! He uses the same lies over and over again.
What we need to do, of course, is know the truth from the Word of God and recognize those lies immediately. So, if they come at us we're going to know immediately to cast those out. We want to cast those thoughts out, and replace them with the Word. We have to begin to recognize those lies so that we can be prepared for the next time that he might try to lie to us.
Another thing to know is that he can also work through people. Now, this is really important for us to understand. People can be deceived as well as be deceivers. It is possible that someone that's influencing us could be deceived themselves. They could actually deceive us without even knowing it. We need to know that it can work through people. That’s another teaching, but I know that it is due to a spirit being on or in that person. We’ll talk about that another time. I just want you to know that if someone close to you is deceived, they can also influence you. We need to know the truth and we must know the truth to recognize a lie and the truth is in God's word the Bible.
We're all susceptible, whether we want to think it or not, to the lies of the enemy. We have to know the Word. We have to study it. We have to meditate on it.
I have several videos and “Coffee and the Word” Devotionals that will help you. You can go back and look at some of those videos about how to study the Word and that kind of thing. Don't be afraid of that word, “study”, because that only means “read it”. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you.
A lot of us were raised to believe that we can't interpret the bible, that we can't understand it. That's just not true. That is a lie from the pit. All right?
Let's read John 8:44. Jesus is speaking and in that verse he's speaking of the devil. He says, “For he is a liar and the father of lies”. Now, we've probably all heard that scripture, but I want us to really hold on to that throughout this series. He's the father of lies. In other words, that's who he is.
Deception, the actual word deception that I've been using means to deceive somebody. And, it means to make that person believe a lie or something that's not true. Yeah! That sounds very simple doesn't it? And, it also sounds like a big, “Oh I could never be deceived!” Well, I would hope that we could never be deceived, but the truth is that we all are vulnerable. We're human beings. So, when the enemy sends deception your way, it's an attempt to deceive you into believing something that is not true at all. Most likely his ultimate goal is to throw you off track in some way.
Strongholds are built through deception. A stronghold is formed when a deception becomes something that you believe to your toes. Basically, a stronghold is an incorrect thinking pattern. It's thinking in a way that is wrong. If you're deceived, and you hear a lie enough, or you believe that you see evidence of it, that can actually become a stronghold in your life. We’ll talk more about that another time. But, I do want to let you know that strongholds are formed with deception. So, from the very beginning, Satan deceived Eve, didn't he? He deceived her into believing that God's Word wasn't quite true. In Genesis 3:4, the devil told Eve that she would not surely die as God had said she would.
So we must know the truth to recognize a lie. The truth is in God's Word - the Bible.
One of the biggest lies I want to talk about today is that the devil is not still in the world - that he doesn't exist. I have read crazy statistics lately about churches that are teaching that the devil is not real. Look, we're not going to pay a lot of attention to him from the standpoint of talking about him over and over. But, for the purposes of this teaching, let me tell you that is one of the biggest lies that's out there. If he's not real, then you don't need to be cautious of him. So, what he wants people to think is that he's not real - that there's no reason to be afraid. And, I don't mean live in fear, but just aware of him. If we don't believe he's real, then we don't have to be wary of the lies that he's telling us. Right? So, many churches are not talking about him. Now, we never want to give him any more credit than he's due, or time than we have to. But, not teaching about him because it's not “user-friendly” or popular in church is really part of the deception. That's one of the biggest lies he's got out there - that he's not real. Satan's goal is to alienate us from God, and he's going to use anything that he can in order to do that. One of the main things he wants to do is distort the concept of God and also the concept that he is not real.
All right. So, very quickly, let's go over this. Satan tries to make us feel as if we're not forgiven, even though we've confessed our sin. That'll be one thing that you'll hear a little nagging voice telling you, “You know what you may have confessed, but you're not really forgiven.” “How could you be forgiven?”. “It was so bad what you did!” Those might be things that you hear. He also would love for us to believe that God is like a tyrant - like a policeman ready to arrest us at any turn. He would like you to believe that God would desert us. But, that's all deception. We know this isn't true. If you're following Christ, you know it isn't true intellectually. But, I have heard so many people say that they just don't believe that they've really been forgiven. That's the kind of thing he'll try to tell us.
All right. So, he tries to paint these images about God that are not real. And, that is deception. If we listen to it long enough and if we don't recognize that it's a lie, it can become a stronghold in our life. He wants to get you to believe that the Bible is unproven. You're going to hear that a lot in the world right now. Right? It's just a story. It was written by men. There is no proof.
It's a fairy tale. I've heard all kinds of things. I won't even go into that because that would take hours. Jesus is just a story and it was applicable years ago, but it's not applicable anymore. And, on another side note - a lot of churches are teaching that the Bible isn't applicable in every way anymore.
We must know the truth to recognize a lie and the truth is in God's word the Bible. We have to know the truth. We have to be in the Word. He tells lie after lie. That's deception. And, sometimes the deception is so subtle that we would not even pick it up. That is why I’m doing this series.
The very first thing I want to say, before we get going on some specifics, is that he's going to talk to you about who you are. Are you really a child of God? How could you possibly be a child of god? How could you be a son or a daughter? There's hundreds of ways that he is going to talk to you about who you are. He will try to tell you that you're not a child of god - that you're not a daughter or a son.
Lie number one that he will tell you is that if people knew who you really were, if they saw the real you, they would not like you. You would not be accepted. That is a major lie that the enemy has out there for us. And, we have to know the truth. We have to be in the Word. I call it hiding behind the “I've-got-it-all-together” mask - the I.G.I.A.T. mask. That's the mask that a lot of us hide behind. I would say most of us have done it at some point so that we don't have to reveal anything about ourselves; so that we don't have to take any chances; so that we can be accepted; or, so we think that we would not be. It's a lie from the enemy that you wouldn't be accepted if people knew who you were or knew your past. We don't want to look bad. Don't get me wrong. It's okay to walk in a positive light with a positive attitude. That's what I want you to do. That's what God wants. He wants us there. But, I'm talking about being afraid to let people in - to let them know that we need prayer; to let them know that we have an issue with our children or our marriage; and that we need prayer for that; or we need help with that extended family. It could be anything - job insecurity. It could be anything. So, hiding behind a mask is very harmful to us, of course. But, it is harmful to others and this is what I really want to point out before we end today. If we're hiding behind that “I've-got-it-all together” mask and we never open up, people can look at us and think we're perfect or that our life is perfect - that we have no problems. There is not a person out there that doesn't have challenges every single day. So, it can actually be detrimental to others and to our testimonies when other women, men or couples see us. They assume that because they never see anything that's real or transparent coming out, that everything's perfect. This makes people feel inferior or like they can't open up and share. People won’t know that you understand their issue if you’re wearing that mask. So, we do compare ourselves to others, whether we want to or not. If we're behind that mask, others can feel inferior. It's a lie from the pit and it's a very dangerous one. Why would Satan care? He cares because there is power in living an authentic, born-again, Bible- believing life. He doesn't like it when we can be free in Jesus. And, the enemy doesn't want that. He has a very good reason to try to keep us behind that mask. So, I'm going to end with this. We must know the truth to recognize a lie and the truth is in God's word, the Bible.
All right. I'm going to end here for today. And, when we continue, this is what I would like to challenge you to do. Begin to pray and ask the Lord, “Are there lies about who I am and do I know who I am in you, Lord? Do I believe that I am a son or that I am a daughter? Do I believe that my marriage is blessed - that You're right in the middle of my marriage or my family? Whatever it might be, begin to ask him. Record in your journal or on a notepad anything that you hear, because what God will do is begin to reveal to you lies that you're believing or even just being influenced by.