Too often today we don’t hear about people standing up, whether it’s to big government infringing on freedoms or to the rowdy group of teenagers on the subway. People have grown weak and afraid rather than bold, loving, and self-disciplined. When there is a crime being committed or someone is being attacked, people are quick to get their phones out and record it but they are slow to stand up and do something.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
Possibly the worst example of passivity among people is when people don’t stand up for Biblical truths. When claims are made about God that are untrue and people stand silently by, that’s how you get things like Jehovah’s Witnesses and many other cults that teach falsehoods in convincing ways. In fact, standing by and saying nothing while lies are spread about God—this type of passivity was, arguably, the first sin.
“The serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild animals the Lord God had made. One day he asked the woman, ‘Did God really say you must not eat the fruit from any of the trees in the garden?’
“‘Of course we may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,’ the woman replied. ‘It’s only the fruit from the tree in the middle of the garden that we are not allowed to eat. God said, ‘You must not eat it or even touch it; if you do, you will die.’
“‘You won’t die!’ the serpent replied to the woman. ‘God knows that your eyes will be opened as soon as you eat it, and you will be like God, knowing both good and evil.’ The woman was convinced.” (Genesis 3:1-6a)
The serpent, Satan, still uses the same tactics today: questioning something God said while twisting God’s words in the process. God never said they couldn’t eat fruit from any trees, but the serpent frames the question in a falsehood. Then when Eve gives the serpent an honest and accurate answer, the serpent lies, saying they won’t die and God just didn’t want them to be like Him, making a claim about God that suggests that God is fearful or selfish. And through the questioning and the lies, the woman is convinced. Where was Adam during all of this? Where was Eve’s husband, the head of that relationship, her protector and guide? Right there with her.
“She saw that the tree was beautiful and its fruit looked delicious, and she wanted the wisdom it would give her. So she took some of the fruit and ate it. Then she gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it, too.” (Genesis 3:6b)
Did you catch that? The phrase “who was with her” is put into the sentence using what’s known as parenthetical commas. These are used when extra information is added to a sentence. Eve gave some of the apple to her husband and he ate it too—oh and, by the way, he was right there with her! Adam stood by while God was questioned and lied about to his wife and he said nothing. Adam isn’t mentioned until he actually does something, and the first thing he does is not stand up for God or protect his wife from lies—the first thing he does is join Eve in disobeying God!
“We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)
“Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)
“Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.” (1 Peter 3:15)
Don’t make the same mistake Adam made. Stand up when you hear falsehoods spread about God. Study His book of instruction so that you can decipher what is true and untrue. Stand up for God and for His Truth.
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.