Today I’m continuing my weekend “lies” theme with the second of two early 2011 books published with the word “lies” in the title.
If you want to cue up the soundtrack in your head, and you listened to ’80s music, you could go with “Lies” by The Thompson Twins, but you would probably want to know that the biggest lie was that there were no twins in the group, and no one named Thompson. !
But back to our book…
Today we’re looking at Steve McVey’s 52 Lies Heard in Church Every Sunday: And Why The Truth Is So Much Better, which, as a title, is deliberately provocative. Maybe unnecessarily so. I didn’t research this, but I think a lot of “lying” implies intention, and I don’t believe the people who make these statements are off on a deliberate intent to distort or mis-state scriptural truth.
I also need to say that, as with yesterday’s title, I didn’t get a review copy of the book itself from Harvest House, so this is based on a rather brief skimming; the kind of thing where the salesclerk says, “You’ve been here an hour, either buy the book or put it back on the shelf.” Or something like that.
The book is actually part one of a two part collection of 101 “lies”, with the second release TBA. You can see all 101 here, (Click on each one for a short video teaching on each topic.)
Most of the 52 covered in this book fall into one of several categories: (a) mis-statements because of differences as to where we stand practically versus where we stand in Christ positionally, (b) mis-readings of scripture, or statements not reflective of Christian maturity, and (c) things that have become part of the common parlance of Christianity, i.e. sayings and clichés that we repeat mindlessly. In an interview on BlogTalkRadio, Steve admits to having perpetuated these ‘lies’ himself in the pulpit.
You’ve probably run up against a few of these statements yourself, and if you wanted to be able to respond properly when you hear these things, this would be a good book to own as a reference item.
Again, though, I need to identify the hyperbole of calling many of these ‘lies’ as some of them simply rest on semantic distinctions. But if the reader can suspend cynicism, there is some excellent foundational teaching in 52 Lies…
So here they are:
- Salvation is giving your life to Christ
- Christians are just sinners saved by grace
- When you became a Christian God changed your life
- Becoming a Christian means having your sins forgiven
- Our sins are under the blood of Jesus
- Your greatest need is to love God more
- The answer for weak Christian commitment is to rededicate your life to Christ
- The Holy Spirit convicts unbelievers of their sins
- The Christian life is all of Him and none of me
- You can go too far with grace
- Your greatest responsibility is to serve God
- Christ wants to have first place in your life
- God wants to give you what you need
- We need to focus on overcoming our sins
- We need to continually ask God to forgive our sins
- When we do wrong we are out of fellowship with God
- You should live by the teachings of the Bible
- You need to find God’s perfect will for you life
- God is disappointed in you when you do wrong
- God won’t put more on you than you can bear
- There are secular and sacred things in life
- We need revival
- We should befriend unbelievers in order to win them
- We need to pay the price to be used by God
- We need a fresh anointing
- Repentance brings God’s goodness into our lives
- Grace and truth need to be kept in balance
- God only speaks today through the Bible
- It’s a sin to be depressed
- You should make Jesus Lord of your life
- We need more faith
- Your sins can disqualify you from being used by God
- You need to starve the old nature and feed the new
- We need to seek spiritual power
- We should live by Christian morals
- Your heart is desperately wicked
- You need an accountability partner
- You grow in holiness
- You should pray to love Christ more
- We are positionally righteous
- Faith requires that we act positively in every situation
- Christ empowers us to keep God’s law
- If you don’t forgive others, God won’t forgive you
- You shouldn’t do anything that might offend somebody
- God needs you to accomplish His work
- It’s better to burn out for Christ than to rust out
- You will be blessed because you tithe
- Sunday is the Christian sabbath
- If you pray long and hard enough God will answer your prayers
- The truth will set you free
- You must forgive and forget
- Grace is a very important doctrine
Now on some of these, you’re going to recognize where he’s going with these. They’re in the “God helps those who help themselves” category. But on others, you might find yourself saying, “Wait a minute, that is what the scripture says.” For those, you’ll have to buy the book.
Suffice it to say that some of these are rather blatant doctrinal mis-statements or ambiguities, but others succeed or fail based on rather fine hair-splitting or nuance. That doesn’t diminish my recommendation however, and if anyone at Harvest House wants to send an actual review copy, I’d be willing to revisit this title.
For this weekend’s other “lies” title, click here.