April 21, 2011

Itching Ears

He called me again yesterday. It freaks me out every time. Maybe he's called you, too - that freaky automated voice from CVS pharmacy. Almost makes me want to take my prescriptions off of auto-refill. Thankfully I recognize the number now - I know it's him. I've tried to surprise him when I answer, but he just starts talking and keeps going. And then he has the audacity to try and convince me that this is a "courtesy call". If he had any courtesy he'd shut up and listen when I'm trying to respond and converse. No such luck. He regurgitates his spiel, hangs up on me, and like clockwork, calls me back 30 days later. And freaks me out all over again.

The reason why this computer-programmed automated informant makes my spine tingle is not because he sounds like a computer or a robot. In fact, there's not even a hint of droid in that voice. It's just the opposite. The thing that freaks me out so bad is that it sounds WAY too much like a real live human being. And I don't like being deceived!

Sadly, I'm often reminded of (burdened and frustrated by) the fact that there are some out there (probably many) preaching something that sounds a LOT like the Gospel - it is even packed and wrapped with words like "Jesus", "Spirit", and "Blessing". But at the end of the day it finally shows it's ugly face and we realize that this "gospel" that's being sold is rooted in and leading others toward something other than the Jesus Christ who said, "If you would come after me you must deny yourself, take up your cross and follow me". The false gospel always points back to ME. And discovering true LIFE is dependent on me finally realizing that I have absolutely nothing to offer myself but sin, selfishness, and death. Nothing. ZERO!

In 2 Timothy 4, Paul warns Timothy that "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, and will turn away from listening to the truth..." Itching ears love to hear things like, "God wants to bless you". Sure, He does. But WHAT He desires to bless me with is the key. The blessings He has in mind are holiness, righteousness, mercy, love, generosity, and sanctification - not more and more and more and more stuff. The false gospels abandons and neglects teaching us that the greatest prize of all is simply KNOWING Jesus Christ. It's ALL about Him!

I encourage you to ask God to give you ears to hear Him - to know and discern the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ - not ears that itch for someone to tell you what you simply want to hear. Don't settle for something less. Don't be fooled. It's ALL about Him! Always has been. Always will be. Are your ears itching yet?

1 comment:

Kelly said...

Amen. Reminds me of a certian pastor on TV who consistently preaches about how God wants to bless you and wants you to prosper, etc. Drives me absolutely bananas. And he only throws in like maybe a verse or two of scripture to back up what HE'S saying.