Kevin Cummings, Children’s Ministry 4-5th Grade Coordinator
Like many of your homes, our house has one breakfast product we consume often—Vermont 100% pure maple syrup. As a kid, I remember a different green-stickered plastic container; it was labeled Vermont Maid®. That was my first introduction to false advertising. To a naïve tourist, it looks and pours like authentic syrup…except it is manufactured in a distant city. If you’re really hungry, after seeing it on pancakes you’ll scarf them down and miss out. Or, someone could increasingly taint true syrup with fake stuff, and overtime one’s taste would become accustomed. After college I worked in Colorado, and I enjoyed introducing genuine syrup to several friends.
In chapter 22 for today, Jeremiah states boldly how the Lord is against artificial false prophets. Ignoring popularity points among the people, he comes down hard on their deliberate lies, phony dreams, and delusions.
Jesus says at the end of Matthew 7 to “Watch out for false prophets” and that “by their fruit we will recognize them.” Even though these people claim good deeds, He “will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you.’”
These passages speak to us, not just to “prophets.” Others watch me and you: Are we the real deal?
In and out of the church, we are entrusted with family, children, co-workers, and members of the community to live out the Christian faith in a world that desperately wants to know what is true.
I am thankful for our church’s pastors and leaders; over the years they have guarded and avoided this area of falsehood and watered-down ministry. They speak the Word faithfully so it’s applicable to our lives. We should continue to pray that they receive protection and strength from God and wisdom from the Holy Spirit.
Let us be grounded in the Word, and press on getting to know Jesus, so that we sincerely wear the label: Follower of Christ.
Jesus says, “In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16