The Alluring Deception Of A Toxic Philosophy
Are You Bound To An Empty Philosophy?
If we cannot say with confidence that Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior we are bound by the allurement and deception of a toxic philosophy. Either we are committed to Christ and his teachings or we are being deceived and caught up in a self-styled philosophy that leads to eternal separation from God. The apostle Paul warns us:
See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ. (Colossians 2:8 NIV)
How Philosophies Develop
From early on our belief system begins evolving. By our teen years we are starting to formulate and articulate some of our views and beliefs, much to the surprise of our parents. During this transition to adulthood we are questioning and testing everything. Beliefs, values, opinions, likes and dislikes all seem to need reevaluation. Soon we are embracing ideas and values from a different perspective. Maybe premarital sex isn’t so wrong and weed is really harmless and should be legal. Drinking all night with friends is cool. Same-sex relationships aren’t so bad either. Couples should live together before marriage or just live together—don’t need that piece of paper. We could go on, but the point is made.
We are growing up and developing our philosophical mindset or ideology. Fitting in and pleasing our peers replaces obeying our parents. Parental values seem a bit outdated. Before long we come into ourselves and discover who we are and what we are all about. Many of us catch a somewhat cloudy philosophical vision of who we want to become and how we want others to perceive us. Our clothing, hair, makeup, jewelry, hats, tattoos, piercings, friends and general attitude are all adjusted to reflect our evolving philosophy. It is usually around this time we abandon or reject spiritual or religious practices like church attendance, reading the Bible or praying—very uncool. Some begin to question the existence of God and the whole creation story. At some point we will all question the theory of evolution vs. creation. Maybe the government really is hiding flying saucers and dead aliens at area 54 in the Nevada desert and just maybe we were put on this planet by aliens from another galaxy.
Our philosophy is heavily influenced by the world around us. Friends, social media, music, peer pressure, the news media, entertainment and life’s pleasures all play a role in forming our philosophy. All information, thoughts, ideas, behaviors and attitudes will be filtered and processed through our philosophical mindset. As we move forward we will be guided through life by our philosophical belief system with minor tweaking along the way.
While there are many highly desirable and respected philosophical views in this world, only one leads to God and eternal life. This philosophy of which we speak is found in the man Jesus Christ. In Him we discover the priceless “treasure of wisdom and knowledge” that flows from the mind of God. He is the genuine light that illuminates our minds and hearts. He is the embodiment of true love, which is impossible to comprehend apart from Him. Through Him we are connected to the spiritual dimension that transcends our natural world and guarantees eternal life to all who embrace God. Without Him we are limited to roughly 80 to 90 years on this planet while being deceived by a toxic philosophy that only leads to eternal death. How then shall we escape the penalty of sin which is death and eternal separation from God? What will we say to the Creator of all things for rejecting His amazing love?
Christ is not seeking acceptance into our philosophical lifestyles, He desires to be our philosophy. He wants us to abandon our philosophical ways and follow Him, His ways, His teachings and His desires. He wants us to accept and receive Him as our Lord and Savior. We are to learn and grow in the grace and knowledge of His truth. We are to be Christlike in every way.
There are 4 steps in turning from a toxic philosophy to true life in Christ:
- Accepting — We must accept the fact that God loves us and wants to give us a new life. Regardless of how awful we are, God still offers us a way to escape the deceptive philosophy we are bound to.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16 NIV)
- Agreeing — We must look in the mirror of life and see a sinner in need of forgiveness. We are all guilty of disobeying God and His word. If we cannot own up to that fact, we are deceiving ourselves and calling God a liar.
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Romans 3:23 NIV)
- Knowing — We must know who He really is and recognize that Jesus is the only Savior for all mankind. There is no other philosophy, ideology, religion, belief or way of life that leads to the eternal presence of God—none.
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6 NIV)
Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12 NIV)
- Responding — We must take action and respond to God’s invitation to receive a new life. It is not enough to simply say we believe in God, we must truly “repent” from the philosophical mindset we now embrace and turn to Christ.
Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” (Acts 2:38-39 NIV)
If we choose to ignore, reject or attempt to modify God’s plan to save us from our sins, we will remain bound to our toxic philosophy. Our self-styled philosophy will guide us through this life and may prove to be a highly successful philosophy, but it is no substitute for the life Christ purchased for us by dying in our place. May God’s Spirit speak to all our hearts and cause us to turn to Him as we cast-off this world’s toxic philosophies.
If you have been encouraged by New Life Exchange, you can share us on Facebook or other social media sites at the bottom of this page. Thanks for sharing!