Dear Church Family,
It’s tempting to ignore news we don’t like and believe news we prefer instead. I came across a strange verse today as I was reading through Jeremiah 4. God is declaring coming judgment upon Judah from the nation of Babylon. Jeremiah’s response in verse 10, though, surprised me:
Jeremiah 4:10 (ESV)
Then I said, “Ah, Lord God, surely you have utterly deceived this people and Jerusalem, saying, ‘It shall be well with you,’ whereas the sword has reached their very life.”
It seems at first that Jeremiah is accusing God of intentionally deceiving the people. We know, though, that God had repeatedly warned them through His true prophets, including Jeremiah himself. The problem is the people listened to the news they wanted to hear instead of the hard truth. It seems that Jeremiah’s frustration is that God allows the false prophets to speak to the people at all. Look at how God answers later in the book:
Jeremiah 23:16-17 (ESV)
Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you, filling you with vain hopes. They speak visions of their own minds, not from the mouth of the Lord. 17 They say continually to those who despise the word of the Lord, ‘It shall be well with you’; and to everyone who stubbornly follows his own heart, they say, ‘No disaster shall come upon you.’”
I see two important warnings here. First, we need to be very careful when we hear people claiming to speak God’s truth. Some are just like these false prophets, speaking not God’s truth, but “they speak visions of their own minds.” Everything we hear must line up with Scripture. God explains that those who believe the lie, “despise the word of the Lord.” We must instead, be in the Word and submit to the Word.
Second, we must also be on guard against our own desires. The person described here, “stubbornly follows his own heart.” We must avoid this, knowing, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” (Jeremiah 17:9 ESV) Trust in the Word, not your heart.
Just like in Jeremiah’s day, God still allows both the truth and the lie to be proclaimed. It is our responsibility to spot the lie by knowing the truth and knowing our hearts. Paul warns:
2 Timothy 4:3-4 (ESV)
For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.
What’s Happening at Gospel Life:
VBS Training: If you are helping with the VBS, please join us after the worship service this Sunday,July 2nd for a quick time of training. If you can’t make it, please talk to Heidi or Jenny.
Youth Group: Join us this Sunday, July 2nd from 6-8 pm at the Stewart’s house. in Nampa, ID; call the church number below if you need the address. We’ll have food, games, worship, and hear testimonies of following Jesus.
Stellar VBS: We’re excited for our upcoming Kids VBS at Columbia High School. It is for ages 5-12 and will be July 9-13th, meeting each evening from 6-8 pm. If you are interested in helping please reach out to Jenny or Heidi. Please be praying for God to use this event to reach kids with the Gospel. You can now sign up here:
Communion: We will next be celebrating the Lord’s Supper together as part of our Sunday morning service on Sunday, July 16th. Through the ordinance of communion, we remember Jesus’ body that was broken and His blood that was shed for us.
Challenge for the Year: As we approach the half-way point of 2023, I want to remind you about our challenge for the year: to grow deeper in God’s Word. We will have a special celebration dinner at the end of the year for anyone who completes this challenge. The point is to grow in your relationship with God, so whether you read through the whole Bible or just a portion, seek to know Him more this year!
Request Prayer: It’s important for us to be praying for each other as a church! If you ever need prayer, we would love to come alongside you. You can always turn in a prayer request on Sundays using the Connection Card, but you can also submit a prayer request online at any time:
Life Groups: Life Groups are an important way to connect and grow at Gospel Life. We have several exciting groups for men, women, or both. You can hear about some of these groups here:
If you’re looking for a group to join, you can sign up below or stop by the Welcome Table on Sunday.
This Coming Sunday:
The Worth of a Penny – We’re continuing our series in The Gospel According to Mark and will look at Mark 12:35-44 and see how Jesus defines the worth of a gift.
Watch Previous Worship Services