You Don't Have To Prove Yourself!
Hello friends! As I was writing my post on the strange relationship that the church has with the bible, God spoke to me as I was writing the post. When I was writing the post I began to basically trail off from my original post and speak about something else. It didn't make sense to include this part in my other post; but I do think this message is for someone; and I hope it helps you in the same way it helped me.
I'm pretty sure many of my readers have heard someone say "The Bible says it, I believe it, that settles it." Or if you haven't heard that phrase from someone, you probably have had an experience of someone using a bible verse against you or someone else to harm or silence you. Many women, LGBTQ+ people, people of color, and disabled people have heard countless verses being used against them to attack and degrade their humanity, prevent them from getting married, or claim that they were not made in God's image. And for many nonbelievers and believers alike, this makes people not want to trust in God or believe in the bible at all because so much of it is twisted and used in a way to hurt others. Many people believe that this is a problem that only exists with modern Christians, but this tactic is as old as time and it was actually used by the devil himself. Yes! The DEVIL, the enemy of God and Christians alike has used scripture, to get people to sin. And one example of a person that he tried to do this with was Jesus.
So, we are going to start off in the book of Matthew. During this time within the book, Jesus was in the wilderness and was being continuously tempted by the devil. [Trigger Warning: Mention of Self Harm] He had been fasting for 40 days and the devil was trying to get Jesus to commit suicide.
5 Then the Devil took Jesus to Jerusalem, the Holy City, set him on the highest point of the Temple, 6 and said to him, “If you are God's Son, throw yourself down, for the scripture says,
‘God will give orders to his angels about you;
they will hold you up with their hands,
so that not even your feet will be hurt on the stones.’”
7 Jesus answered, “But the scripture also says, ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’”
Matthew 4:5-7 GNT
These verses are so powerful to me for so many reasons. These three little verses are telling us so much about the way the devil works, and how to fight him. But it also shows us who God is and how He moves. When one takes a first read of the scripture, we can first see that the Devil is trying to get Jesus to end His own life; but the way he does it is by trying to get Jesus to prove who He is to him. The devil talks to Jesus as if he doesn't believe in Him, and wants proof that He is who He says He is; but the very reason the devil is trying to get Him to end His life is because he knows who Jesus is! The Devil was tempting Jesus through a trick that was trying to get Jesus to forget who He was! So if Jesus were to fall into the trap of the devil, and make a case to prove that He is God, then He would have perished! (maybe not perish because obviously nobody can kill God without His consent, but yall know what I mean). But Jesus stood there and knew that He didn't have to prove Himself to ANYONE and especially the devil. Jesus spoke a scripture that breathed life into His situation; and He passed this test by knowing and having confidence in who He is! So to anyone who is dealing with people who are using scripture as a way to tear you down, or make you forget who you are, just remember that Jesus went through the same thing! And He did not feel the need to prove Himself to the enemy; because He had confidence in who He was! There is no need to prove yourself. God knows who you are, and placed you on this earth for a purpose. And anyone who is trying to get you to doubt yourself is wrong! God loves you and cares for you; and He gave you everything you needed, to do what you need to do! Have faith and believe!
Upon reading the scripture again I also found that the devil can use A truth; but not THE truth to cause someone to stumble and fall into sin. And if one doesn't have the spirit of discernment, then these two (while technically true statements) could cause confusion. Many scriptures are taken out of context and used as a way to weaponize against people who don't understand the fullness of the scripture. So because there's so much information within the Bible, there has to be a testing of the spirit to know that this scripture, and this specific perspective of the scripture, is something that should be applied to your situation. And two bible verses that help to show this point is 1 John 4:1-3 and 2 Peter 1:20-21.
My dear friends, do not believe all who claim to have the Spirit, but test them to find out if the spirit they have comes from God. For many false prophets have gone out everywhere. 2 This is how you will be able to know whether it is God's Spirit: anyone who acknowledges that Jesus Christ came as a human being has the Spirit who comes from God. 3 But anyone who denies this about Jesus does not have the Spirit from God. The spirit that he has is from the Enemy of Christ; you heard that it would come, and now it is here in the world already.
1 John 4:1-3 GNT
20 Above all else, however, remember that none of us can explain by ourselves a prophecy in the Scriptures. 21 For no prophetic message ever came just from the human will, but people were under the control of the Holy Spirit as they spoke the message that came from God.
2 Peter 1:20-21 GNT
So to anyone who is dealing with people weaponizing scripture against them; and it feels like they are trying to take you out, just know that Jesus has dealt with the same thing. God has personal experience with this problem; and much like how He didn't need to prove Himself, neither do you!! If God told you to do something, then you have the authority to do it! Don't let these hating fools try to prevent you from what God has spoken over you and told you to do! God is on YOUR side and He wants to see YOU win! You have NOTHING to prove to people who doubt you! Jesus's own BROTHERS doubted His ministry when He came, so God is no stranger to dealing with this. Just trust in the Lord and remember that He has you in His arms and in His care! He will deal with those people, and they will NOT prevent you from doing what you need to do!