This past Friday night the Short Gap Volunteer Fire Company hosted a family friendly professional wrestling event. It was very well attended and everyone seemed to have a great time. One of the members took their 8 or 9 year old son and told him before they went it was fake. Do some of the things hurt? They have to. Do they sometimes get injured? undoubtedly. But fights are staged and rehearsed, the outcomes decided, and the people are often friends. During the intermission, the dad was buying some concessions and told us that his son was asking for sure, “This is fake?” He described it in a way as to express that the son could not believe it was not real. Fake may be a strong word to use if you are one of the ones in the ring being jumped on. But to be sure, it is acting and entertainment. But nobody complained. We were all entertained. That is why people went.
It reminds me of the Bible telling us that there will come a time when people will find teachers to tell them what they want to hear — that they will not want to hear what is real and true, but to hear just what they want to hear. “Itching ears” is a term used in 2 Timothy to describe people who seek out teachers who will teach false messages and doctrines that condone their own lifestyle, as opposed to adhering to the truth from teachings of the apostles and the Bible. Sometimes we act as if we are the only followers of Jesus in whom this warning has come to pass. The truth is the church has been fighting this for 2,000 years. I am not proclaiming that I have the sole truth. I am certain there are things I misunderstand and am wrong about. Yet, I continue to study and pray and present the Good News of Jesus Christ as God helps me understand it. But we must all stand on guard against what is false.
Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good*.
~ Romans 12:9
…but test all things. Hold fast to what is good*.
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:21
I know that nothing good* lives in me, that is, in my flesh; for I have the desire to do what is good*, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good* I want to do. Instead, I keep on doing the evil I do not want to do. And if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
~ Romans 7:18-20
*The word Good is agathós, and describes what originates from God and is empowered by Him in a believer’s life through faith.
Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! ~ Isaiah 5:20