The Word vs. The World
The First in a series of Messages
This is a series entitled, The Word vs. The World, the former my humble attempt to faithfully represent what the Bible says on a particular subject in response to the popular opinion of the day, represented by the latter. Too often, the two views are diametrically opposed. It behooves us to consider which source to which we should ascribe authority. In other words, rather than merely accept popular opinion because it’s– well, popular, or because it sounds like something we want to hear, we should search out the truth, which we can only expect to find grounded in a proper authority. Not that popular opinion never reflects truth; on the contrary, it certainly may, but popular opinion never makes something true. (If it did, there would never be a guilty person acquitted, nor an innocent person convicted, for instance.) The truth is true regardless of whether it enjoys any support whatsoever. Popular opinion, on the other hand, may change with the wind.
So who is your authority? The newspaper? The internet? Hollywood? Your college professor? Your parents? A preacher? A friend? Your own logic? Given that all of these are fallible, we would be wise to hold their opinions (and, yes, most certainly those expressed by this writer in this space) to the light of a more sure standard, which may be found only in the unchanging word of God. Lest we be tossed to and fro like the waves, let us choose this day to anchor our worldview in the Word.
The Word vs. The World
What the world says: #1 Follow your heart
What the Word says: The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? (Jeremiah 17:9 ESV)
Some translations replace “sick” with “wicked.” Either way, the “heart” sure doesn’t sound like a safe stake when searching for something to follow. When we speak figuratively of our hearts, as in the popular “follow your heart” mantra, we really are talking about our felt needs, our passions, our desires… in a word: our flesh. But as the Bible tells us, our flesh will mislead us. The tendency of our flesh is to be selfish, to overindulge, to misuse, to pervert. And such practices always lead to trouble.
Rather than follow our hearts, we would do well to have our heads govern our hearts. But, of course, this assumes that our heads are in the right place! By sticking them in the Word, and recognizing God as our authority instead of subscribing to the world’s view, though perhaps more popular and tantalizing (because who doesn’t want what the heart wants, right?), we are taking a step in the right direction. Better said, we are then closer to recognizing truth, and it is the truth that sets us free.
There is much more that could be said on this topic.