Scripture: 1 Timothy 4:2-3
by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth.
Insights: The third reason some will turn away is because of hypocritical liars. These are human agents that have already bought into the lies of the demonic spirits that are specifically teaching the apostates the wrong doctrine. Now these human agents perpetuate the lie that they have bought into. Theodoret explains, like in English Version, that these liars are “seared,” as implying their extreme insensibility; the effect of cauterizing an individual in order to deaden that persons sensation. The Greek, however, primarily means “branded.” In other words, criminals were literally branded with their crimes and it left scars after having bean seared with a branding iron. The fourth reason some will turn away is because of “religious” ideals. These people after having been lied to by the demonic spirits and having bought into their evil doctrines and experienced human lies these people then become bound and locked up in religious systems and ideals. In this verse Paul references two such practices. These individuals did not marry and they did not eat certain food. In many ways this is reflective of what Paul wrote to the church of Colossae when he wrote, “If you have died with Christ to the elementary principles of the world, why, as if you were living in the world, do you submit yourself to decrees, such as, “Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!” (which all refer to things destined to perish with use)—in accordance with the commandments and teachings of men? These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in aself-made religion and self-abasement and severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against fleshly indulgence (2:20-23).” Tomorrow we will begin to look at the other side of the coin and begin looking at the four ways that others will be sanctified.
1. Are you receiving advice about how to live your life from those who point you away from the Lord?
2. Have you begun to practice earthly regulations with the attempt to save yourself, even if you would not use that terminology?
Prayer: Father, there are good people all over this world that have bought into a lie and are now telling others about that very same falsity. Lord, let me share the truth in the midst of the darkness and let You be brought glory as a result. Amen.