Speaking the Truth in Love
What Must I Do To Be Saved (Believe - Believing a Lie)
A. The stories of the Bible never grow old. They still thrill our hearts as when we first heard them.
2. Probably, we don't review these stories as often as we should.
B. One great story of the Bible is that of the prophet from Judah who was commissioned by God with an important task.
1. The prophet was not named. We will simply call him," the young prophet."
II. 1 KINGS 13
A. Let's look first at the background information (1 Kings 12:26-31)
1. Jeroboam, in altering God's religion, had committed a very grievous sin.
2. He had changed the place of worship, the qualifications for priests, the date of the feast, and so forth. Indeed, he changed many things as "he had devised in his own heart." Verse 24
B. In the course of time, Jeroboam assumed the place of a priest and planned to offer incense on his new altar at Bethel.
1. God appeared to a young prophet of Judah and ordered him to go to Bethel and cry against the altar (1 Kings 13:1-10).
2. His instructions: "For it was commanded me by the word of the Lord, saying, 'You shall not eat bread, nor drink water, nor return by the same way you came.'"
a. His instructions were not hard to understand, nor difficult to observe.
C. There is no better picture of a faithful man of God.
1. He was not afraid of the wrath of the king. He laid his own life on the line. Many of the prophets were imprisoned and killed for the same (2 Chronicles 24:20-21).
2. He was not moved by glory or honor.
a. To go home with and eat with a king was a great honor.
b. He could have reasoned, "I'll have a good influence and cause him to change."
3. He would accept no reward.
b. None of those things persuaded this young prophet. He was determined to obey God in everything.
III. THE OTHER SIDE OF THE STORY.
A. The account of this young prophet is one of the saddest stories in the Bible (1 Kings 13:11-19).
B. Verse 18 is a key verse on understanding God's purpose for revealing this event to us.
1. Consider the good things the young prophet had accomplished:
a. He had been able to withstand the wrath of the king.
b. He stood firm against flattery.
c. He had shunned the lure of riches.
d. He was not a bad man, but a brave character and a true soul.
e. He had previously been absolutely faithful and loyal to God.
f. Yet he failed and was destroyed because he believed a lie!
C. As they sat around the table eating and drinking, the word of the Lord came to the old prophet which caused him to say (1 Kings 13:21-22).
D. The account of his death (1 Kings 13:23-31)
1. What about the older prophet? Was not his the greater sin? Why didn't the Lord kill him instead of the young prophet?
2. The Bible elsewhere tells about the fate of all liars, but God wants to impress upon our minds the danger of believing a lie.
IV. LESSONS TO BE LEARNED.
A. Believing a thing to be true, does not make it true.
1. The young prophet believed the lie of the old prophet.
2. Suppose you were told that one church is just as good as another and you believed it, does that make it so?
3. What about the church out in California which has thousands of members which is "the church of the devil"? If one church is as good as another does that mean that the church of the devil is as good as the church of the Lord?
B. We must render full obedience to God.
2. It does not matter how good you are otherwise.
3. Remember, the young prophet perished, not by wickedness or lack of sincerity, but by believing a lie.
C. We cannot judge a thing to be true by fellow man.
1. He took the word of another man.
a. Elders can be wrong (Acts 20:29-30).
b. Preachers can be wrong (Acts 18:24-26).
c. There are many false teachers telling lies (2 Corinthians 11:13-14).
D. Believing a lie has terrible consequences.
1. Again, why didn't God just kill the liar? There would have been no lesson for us today. Everyone knows that God will punish liars (Revelation 21:8). Few realize that believing a lie is equally fatal.
2. The old prophet said that an angel spoke to him to bring the young prophet back to his house (Galatians 1:6-9).
V. WE MUST MAKE PERSONAL APPLICATION.
Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life and no one comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6)! Belief in Jesus Christ is critical for salvation. We hope you consider these things We hope to see you next time on “Speaking The Truth In Love” when we hope to study “The Believer of John 3:16”!