How do we react when a new idea challenges what we know? We hold very tightly to the knowledge and ideas we grabbed a hold of at a very young age and have carried with us through our whole lives. We have to say “Please,” and “Thank you.” That’s just the right thing to do. Right? And my kids must drink a glass of milk at every meal so they’ll have strong and healthy bones and teeth, probably. When one of those core beliefs is challenged by a new idea, well, it’s usually the new idea that dies a very quick and brutal death.
If you’re on social media, you probably daily see people arguing vehemently for their opinions and beliefs, even to the point of losing friends and creating enemies. How often does someone concede an argument and change sides? Pretty much never, right?
The Pal people are finding their core values and beliefs being challenged – challenged by the Word of God. Many have placed their faith in Jesus Christ and hold God’s Word as their authority, but their old beliefs are not dying easily. They struggle every day to put off the old beliefs – beliefs that the flesh enjoys and desires to cling to – and walk in the new life God calls them to.
Recently, we as the Pal church had it out. We put aside the lesson on the book of Acts that was planned for that Sunday, and we addressed these old beliefs that too many believers are still holding on to. We exhorted the Pal church to throw away these false beliefs once and for all and to stand strong on God’s Word alone. We exhorted them to make their decision that day who they were going to follow. We also had it out with the Pal Bible teachers. We had to remove four of them from their positions as teachers, which served as a dire warning to the rest of the group.
Many Pal believers have put off their old ways and old beliefs once and for all. Some made this choice years ago; many made it just recently. But there are those still trying to walk a non-existent middle road: “I believe God’s Word is true, but . . .” It’s a struggle.
But God is at work here. We are stubborn, foolish, unrepentant people. But our God, who breathed stars into existence, is working in us. He is working among His children here, showing and teaching them His grace, power, holiness, and love. And there is growth. And there is hope. And the light is piercing the darkness.