Who Is Hindering Us From Obeying The Truth? 2

Who Is Hindering Us From Obeying The Truth?  Part 2
The art of Distractions

You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? Galatians 5:7 (NKJV)

We are looking at a devotional series titled, "Who Is Hindering Us From Obeying The Truth."  In Part 1 of this series, we looked at the letter Paul addressed to the Galatians - believers who had turned from the faith and stopped obeying the truth due to people deceiving them.  The deceptions from the enemy led them to believe they had to submit to Jewish religious customs and obey every law if they were to be saved.  This was the lie Satan used to tempt these Galatian people into believing they could not be saved merely by God's grace through faith alone.  

If Paul were here today writing a letter to us as he did to the believers back then, he could probably ask the same question of each of us.

Q:    Who hindered you from obeying the Truth?

Again, many Christians today have made the same profession of faith in Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior, only to keep from obeying the truth. Let's look at the second reason people start out well, but are hindered in obeying the truth.  

2.    People are being deceived through distractions & diversions

The deception Satan brings through various distractions and diversions can be based on legitimate needs, wants and desires. They can be through physical afflictions, including mental illness, various diseases, and even through blessings. They can be anything that takes our eyes off of God, and His will for our life. Listen to what the encyclopedia says about the use of Distractions or Diversions in the fighting of war -

An assault should come at a time when least expected, taking into consideration fatigue, normal sleep periods, and other factors that detract from the target's alertness. Diversions are an essential element in achieving surprise. Staged emergencies, such as a mock auto accident, fire, or explosion near the crisis site, can divert the target's attention away from the assaulting elements. These distractions can be very powerful and effective in diverting ones attention!

And this is exactly what Satan and his emissaries do in our lives - they create distractions through emergencies, financial crisis, seduction through sexual lust, etc.

Q:    What is the power behind the enemy's distractions?
A:    The temptation to believe the lie!

Satan's smoke bombs, and grenades, are the temptation to fear, to be anxious, to be angry, to worry, to doubt, to envy, to covet, to believe we will be satisfied if we can only have those things we don't have.  But this is not what will satisfy us!  Only God can truly satisfy our true needs and give us a perfect peace (Isa. 26:3).

Christians are to be Holy and set apart from the unbelieving world - they are to be different, living as Christ lived.  This means we shouldn't be living and acting as the world does - were not to be conformed (See Rom 12:1-2).  We shouldn't be gambling, drinking, or smoking pot.  We shouldn't be racked in debt because of uncontrolled spending.  We shouldn't be using our computers to view pornography.  

Listen to what 2Timothy says about what it would be like in the "Last days."

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. 2Timothy 3:1-5 (NKJV)

If we were to take a good look our world we are living in, we can conclude without hesitation, these are truly the last days.  People are being distracted from doing what God has called them to do.  We are distracted from sharing the saving gospel message or from serving others in love because we are too busy taking care of our own lives, and desires - it shouldn't be this way.

So, let's talk about this.  What if we claim to know God - We have made a profession of faith in Jesus as our Savior - but we are still fighting a fleshly addiction, such as, uncontrolled spending, drinking, smoking, gambling, pornography, etc?  We can conclude that we are obviously choosing to follow our feelings vs. being obedient to God.  Some would say, "I can quit these things at any time... I just happen to enjoy it, and I don't see any harm."  The harm is the fact its sin, and it is not God's will!  And that makes it willful disobedience.  And still others would say, "I can't quit, I've tried, and I keep going back to it - I've tried everything..."

Q:    Where do we go from here?

A:    In Part 3, we are going to address this answer, and begin to look at 8-ways to win the war against the enemies temptations, distractions and strongholds within our lives.

STUDY QUESTION: According to 2Timothy 3:1-5, what would mankind be like in the last days?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Can you see where the enemy has tempted you to be distracted from keeping your eyes on God, and His Word?

APPLICATION: Stay focused, and keep reading your Bible.  Everything you need to stay focused is in it.  Read it daily and apply what you are reading.  Pray as you read and ask God to show you everything He wants you to learn.  

Father, Thank You for Your Word, and the truth and guidance contained within it.  Help me to stay focused and to identify any and all distractions from the enemy.  In Jesus name I pray, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000