In Genesis chapter 3, Eve succumbed to the temptation to elevate her position above what God allocated to her. Once she took the carrot she gained the knowledge that she was naked, then in fear, hid from God, then lied about why, then blamed the serpent, whilst at the same time Adam blamed God for giving him the woman, and then blamed the woman for misleading him.
The pattern of sin was set from the beginning,
thus everyone lies and blames when they are protecting their self-elevated position. Once you fall to the temptation to elevate yourself especially by judging others for their weaknesses, you sincerely believe you know what’s right and generally can’t be told otherwise. This is the religion of humanism … the belief that your truth is just as valid as anyone else’s and ultimately no one has the right to tell you you’re wrong.
The truth is that your own mind is carnal and at enmity with God and not subject to the ten commandments (Romans 8:7), and when you doggedly hold to your opinion you are actually putting yourself under the influence of a lying spirit i.e. you’ll lie and blame to protect your point of view so you don’t get put down from your elevated position.
Is there such a thing as a lying spirit?
Yes, you’ll find it in 1 Kings 22:23
A Christian who falls to the temptation to elevate themselves will immediately be in two minds; your own mind will supersede and cloud the mind of Christ. To you, your own thinking will be absolutely valid and true and when someone contradicts you, you’ll bite.
Not once saved always saved
If a Christian holds to their own mind they will lose their salvation. The church teaches the half-truth ‘once saved always saved’ from John 10:28, but the full truth is you can lose your salvation by hardening your mind to the mind of Christ. Adam and Eve were sent out of the garden and separated from God. The Jews were saved from Egypt but died in the wilderness without ever seeing the Promised Land. Paul says we are required to run the race to the end.
Be not high-minded, but fear. For if God spared not the Jews take heed lest He also spare not thee, otherwise you will be cut off. Romans 11:20-22, Hebrews 6:4-6
Once you decide to persist with your arrogant resistance, a lying spirit will convince you everyone else is wrong. You’ll be absolutely convinced your thinking is right, and you will misinterpret what is being said to you or what is being advised to you. The truth is that elevation shuts off the mind of Christ so you can only hear yourself.
How can you know if you are under the influence of a lying spirit?
He that says I know Him and keeps not His commandments is a liar and the truth is not in him. 1 John 2:4,9 ;4:20
If you persistently covet a higher position or greater favour than someone else, know that you are a liar about loving God. If you persistently think you’re better than other people, know that you are a liar about loving God. If you hate the fact that someone else has the talent or is liked more or gets the better deal, then know that you are a liar about loving God. It’s a contradiction to envy your neighbour and at the same time to say you love your neighbour as yourself. To believe you care about your neighbour when in fact you envy him, is the evidence of being under the influence of a lying spirit.
Under a lying spirit, you’ll blame others for your problems and hassles, and you’ll withdraw (hide) so you can’t get told-off or corrected. A lying spirit believes you don’t have the right to tell it what it’s thinking.
Under a lying spirit, you’ll judge the authority for not responding the way you think is right, and thus prove you think you know more than the authority, and thus confirming you are not under authority.
A lying spirit says it cares, but it always has another hidden agenda to save itself from hassles, or from work, or from correction, or to promote itself to look good.
A lying spirit thinks it’s nice, but it always has another hidden agenda to save itself from hassles, or from work, or from correction, or to promote itself to look good.
The talent of thinking I’m good and right via the evolution of behaviour
Evolution is not changing from one species to another, it’s adapting to our environment. In behavioural terms, it’s modifying our behaviour so we are acceptable in the eyes of others.
Some people have developed the talent of shutting off all bad thoughts and believing they only have good thoughts and only do good things but at the same time they practice envy and even hate. This is actually the technique of evolving their behaviour by simply adapting to the evaluation of others so they look good in others’ eyes. It’s simply self-focussed infatuation to never feel inferior. What they’ve really evolved is the ability to shut down their emotions so they have no bad hurtful feelings and modify their behaviour to the acceptable standard of the church society, and thus self-deduce they have only good thoughts with good deeds. These people are so convinced by the truth of their self-deductions they can’t believe any opinion to the contrary.
They actually don’t know they are in envy because they haven’t got the mind of Christ to convict them. It’s actually not a talent it’s a lying spirit, and they just can’t see it, and they’re offended when you point it out to them, and if they do agree with you they’re annoyed that they can’t change and stop it.
In 1 Samuel, King Saul elevated himself above his God-given position when he took on Samuel the prophet’s role and sacrificed on the altar because he was impatient and fearful. In chapter 15, he was convinced he had done what was right and what he had been told to do, and when confronted he lied and blamed. His whole intention was to look good in front of the people. He argued with the prophet, and when Samuel held his position, Saul finally agreed with the prophet that he had sinned but only so he wouldn’t be de-elevated, and he kept pretending to worship the Lord. The real truth was he had elevated himself with envy when David was accoladed above him by the people. Because Samuel had exposed Saul’s lie and made him look bad and feel hurt, from then on Samuel was in danger of Saul’s vindictiveness.
An elevated person can’t hear the prophet, they can only hear themselves.
There’s only one way of escape
There’s only one way back to the mind of Christ and to escape the control of a lying spirit, and that is to give up your elevation and surrender to what God wants. Humility isn’t a mind-over-matter decision to de-elevate yourself, or not do the wrong thing, or not to lie or blame. Rather, it’s a decision of your will to surrender to God’s will on every matter by trusting His will and His outcome, not using God for your outcome, and clearly, most people can’t trust, so they lie to look like they’re a Christian. You have to trust before the opposing opinion is presented to you, otherwise your own carnal will determine you have the right to analyse whether the messenger is right or wrong, and it won’t hear the message by faith. What’s really lacking is faith in God because what people really want is favour and value especially above someone else who seems to have it.
May God bring conviction of sin and open your eyes to your elevated pride.
Dr. James Brown