Live With Eternal Perspective Podcast Episode 022 Discerning Truth, Detecting Lies

Live With Eternal Perspective Podcast Episode 022 Discerning Truth, Detecting Lies

Welcome to the Terri Hitt – Live With Eternal Perspective Podcast
Episode #022 – Discerning Truth/Detecting Lies

Thank you for entrusting and investing your precious time with me to grow in Jesus together. I am blessed to be back with you today to discuss more ways to live with eternal perspective.

My youngest daughter should be nicknamed, “Shadow.” She follows me around the house at least 95% of each day, watching everything I say and do. I believe one of her strongest skills is the power of observation. Due to her background and history before us, she had ample time to hone this ability. Time with her has been short, but her desire and strengths have allowed her to catch up in several areas of deficit much quicker than anticipated.

Seeing her learn through the gifts of examination and consideration have been powerful and insightful for me as a mother. It impresses upon me even more strongly the importance of what she sees through me daily. Sticking so closely to my side allows her the opportunity to see every action and hear every word I offer. My eyes and heart need to remain fixed above so that I have a greater ability to shadow the actions and intents of Jesus for her to model.

As parents, we all strive to teach certain skills to our children before they leave our care. We easily think of the obvious abilities they will need to live alone, such as washing and mending clothing, keeping a clean home, balancing their money, and other necessities like these. However, when we consider the intentionality of teaching our children to pursue an eternal perspective lifestyle, we also desire to teach them proficiency in spiritual skills such as discernment.

During a conversation with my other daughter last week, she shared with me that she would appreciate learning more about living with outstanding judgement and understanding through God’s viewpoint. I was pleased with her request, because she is wise for her age, an old soul, yet she still wants to live with pleasing values and intentions that rely on and draw from God’s wisdom.

How do we ensure that we live in ways that are pleasing to God? What must we do to make sure we live in ways that observe and draw from His wisdom?

When we intentionally think with God’s truths, we actually exercise outstanding judgment and understanding. We look at the world and occurrences through the guidelines of His truths. We observe and ponder that which is obscure to the wisdom of this world (or self) and perceive or grasp it through eternal perspective insight given by God so that we are able to comprehend and discern how God would call us to act, speak, or believe.

Godly discernment is vitally important.

We must know God’s truths because of our relationship with Him through Jesus. We must read and study his word to prevent us from being deceived by this unbiblical world. We must desire to develop the mindset of Christ, not this world we are traveling through. Unbiblical minds and hearts lead to disobedient and unfruitful lives of sorrow, bitterness, judgements, and chaos.

Proverbs 1:1-7 in the New Living Translation expresses the truths of the book and what we should strive for in life very simply. “These are the proverbs of Solomon, David’s son, king of Israel. Their purpose is to teach people wisdom and discipline, to help them understand the insights of the wise. Their purpose is to teach people to live disciplined and successful lives, to help them do what is right, just, and fair. These proverbs will give insight to the simple, knowledge and discernment to the young. Let the wise listen to these proverbs and become even wiser. Let those with understanding receive guidance by exploring the meaning in these proverbs and parables the words of the wise and their riddles. Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.”

King Solomon is said to be the wisest man (besides Jesus) who ever lived. Yet, although God blessed him with much wisdom and wealth, Solomon still made dreadful mistakes in his walk with God. Anyone who takes his eye off of God will fall victim to sinning against God, despite the intentions we set out with or the gifts He has blessed us with. The opposite of God’s wisdom is ignorance, foolishness, and absence of discernment resulting in mistakes and disappointments. As Proverbs clearly shows us, a foolish person will ignore God’s wisdom and discernment and continue persisting in walking in their own strength and wisdom.

No other section of the Bible offers as much instruction or clarity on the basics of living a Godly life than the book of Proverbs. If you desire wisdom and instruction, to perceive words of understanding, to receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, judgment, or to give prudence to the simple, and to give the young man knowledge and discretion, you must study and put into practice the words shared as you seek God, His answers, and His direction to life.

The book of Proverbs stands the test of time throughout each generation with timeless cautions, insights, and truths that expose the wisdom of God, who longs to love, protect, and guide us.
Beyond reading, understanding, and practicing principles taught in Proverbs, what will enable us to develop godly, biblical discernment from the Lord? In condensed form, the foundation of truths taught in this book are as follows.

1. We must be humble. Despite the intelligence God gives and allows us to possess, we do not know or understand (and never will) nearly as much as God does. Even the greatest minds the world has ever held fall way below God, who created them. 1 Corinthians 2:10-16 says, “But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one. For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ.” As we submit to God in humble acknowledgement of Who and What He is, the Holy Spirit is able to work within us, imparting wisdom and understanding through illumination by Him.

2. We must trust God. He is God. We are not. Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” We must train ourselves to live with stillness that allows God to be acknowledged. He is always present and has made a perfect plan for our lives. We simply have to draw near to Him with the desire to surrender through trust and obedience.

3. We must live by faith, seeking to know and please Him more each day. 2 Corinthians 5:7 says, “For we walk by faith, not by sight.” As we deepen our walk with the Lord through Jesus, learning Biblical truths and promises, and allowing God to build our worth through Him, we walk in step with Him and learn to trust that faith is enough.

4. We must pray for God’s wisdom, insight, and understanding. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths.” James 1:5 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” God grants wisdom and discernment to those who truly desire it for the right reasons.

5. We must desire, read, and study God’s word (as well as put it into practice) and cling closely to the wisdom of the Holy Spirit within us in order to carefully discern God’s holy truths. 1 John 4:1 says, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” Do not deceived by this world. Many false teachings exist and the only way to discern what is truly of God is to cling tightly to Him and His Holy word, studying and examining the meanings, and the messengers. We must compare teachings and beliefs against the word of God to see whether they are in perfect alignment.

6. We must maintain good relationships with other believers who encourage us and challenge us to live for God. Romans 1:11-12 says, “For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine.”

7. We must know and live in the light of God’s truth, cleaving our hearts and desires to His. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” The word of God is a discerner means that God’s anointed words are a judge. Only the very words of God can correctly sift and measure whether our thoughts and intentions are pure and godly or born of our flesh.

8. We must observe the life of Jesus. When we understand Him, we become more like Him. Becoming more Christlike is such a priority if we want to live with eternal perspective. Jesus is our living manual as to how to navigate this world and prepare for the next. Romans 12:2 says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Isaiah 40:31 says, “But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” 1 John 2:3-6 says, “And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.”

9. We must continue to seek God’s wisdom, never falling victim to the lie that we have learned all we can. Proverbs 2:6 says, “For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.” Ephesians 5:15-16 says, “Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” James 3:17 says, “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.” 1 Corinthians 3:18 says, “Do not deceive yourselves. If any of you think you are wise by the standards of this age, you should become “fools” so that you may become wise.” Matthew 7:24 says, “Therefore everyone who hears these words and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house of the rock.” Psalm 90:12 says, “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”

10. We must desire and pursue intimacy with God. Psalm 63:1-8 leaves a beautiful and poetic example. “O God, You are my God. Earnestly I seek You; my soul thirsts for You. My body yearns for You in a dry and weary land without water.

So I have seen You in the sanctuary and beheld Your power and glory. Because Your loving devotion is better than life, my lips will glorify You. So I will bless You as long as I live; in Your name I will lift my hands. My soul is satisfied as with the richest of foods; with joyful lips my mouth will praise You. When I remember You on my bed, I think of You through the watches of the night. For You are my help; I will sing for joy in the shadow of Your wings. My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me.”

11. We must continue to draw near to God, despite momentary circumstances, deepening our maturity with and through the Lord. Psalms 145:18-19 says, “The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them.” When we test daily occurrences and hardships against God’s word, we begin to mature the ability to discern between not only right and wrong, but also the gray areas that cause such division and diversion in our lives and relationships.

There is a right by God’s standards and a right by the codes of this world or our personal preference. They are vastly different.

As we focus more intently on living with eternal perspective, the desires of this world shift and fade, releasing a grip on our hearts, minds, words, and actions, allowing them to be transformed through Christ.

Through this process, we must diligently seek to do the following.
1. Pray steadfastly for God’s purpose and direction.
2. Allow our mind to be transformed to believe as God’s, accepting His passions, dislikes, and desires.
3. Seek wise spiritual counsel and compare it against God’s word and values.
4. Make decisions based on the shifts God has made in our mindset.
5. Do not impulsively follow our own wishes or desires rather than seek God’s through prayer.
6. Allow our setbacks and mistakes to guide and humble us as we grow closer to the Lord.
7. Choose a circle of godly friends for encouragement and reach out to those we can mentor in the Lord, as well.
8. Turn away from selfish desires and cultural trends.
9. Align our morals against the compass of God’s truths.
10. Build a fence that guards us far from the cliff of disaster.

Obtaining and living with His valued judgement and understanding does not cause us to be judgmental, but rather, to access God’s discernment, holding us close to what He demands, while relying on Him to personally guide and direct us individually.

Godly judgement seeks to be judged personally by God as we look Up to Him, not looking around us to evaluate or criticize the walk of another. Yet, as godly parents, we must hold closely the high call God has bestowed on us to seek, know, and follow Him as He desires, then model and teach the same values to our children and the next generation.

Let me share five more verses that speak to living with discernment.
1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 says, “Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.”

Philippians 1:9-11 says, “And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”

Hebrews 5:12-14 says, “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”

John 17:15-17 says, “I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.”

John 4:23-24 says, “But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Father, I pray that You help us to desire the discernment that only You can give. May we joyfully and humbly accept Your guidelines as our own and seek godly judgement and understanding that draws us nearer to You and closer to the model Jesus set for us when He walked the earth, as well as hearing and obeying the Holy Spirit inside us. Amen.

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