What's your reality?
Cobb: The seed that we planted in this man's mind may change everything.
-From the motion picture Inception
The above line is from the action thriller Inception, but it could have come straight out of the mouth of the serpent back in the Garden so long ago, back before Christopher Nolan, before motion pictures, before you and before me.
In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve lived happily in the home God had crafted for them, but not everyone was living so happily. Somewhere lurking in the shadows of that Garden was a creature that knew the power of suggestion long before Christopher Nolan ever did. He knew that if he could simply plant an idea, an idea that was untrue but believable, he could sway God's beloved.
Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say, 'You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?"
It was only a suggestion at first. Did God really say that? Did God really mean what he said? And then the lie....
Genesis 3:4 "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. 5 "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
But the idea, the lie that Satan implanted that day was not just about what God said. No, this was much deeper and much more sinister than that.
It was directed at the very character, the very image, the very essence of who God is, and therefore who we are. In Inception Cobb explains that an idea is like a virus and that it spreads until you lose track of what is true and what is false. Much like a virus, the idea that was implanted that day spread death and it's effects have been felt throughout the ages.
So how do we wake up? How do we fight the lie?
First, by knowing who the liar is. The character Arthur in Inception doubts that real inception can be accomplished because "The dreamer can always remember the genesis of the idea. True inspiration is impossible to fake." Satan cannot make or call out anything new. He can only feed us lies. Recognizing where the lies are coming from will help us recognize what is true and what is false.
Second, by hearing the truth. Notice I didn't say, "by knowing the truth." Hearing God is a life changing experience and it is the only way to receive the truth. A woman who hears the God of the universe call her beloved will believe she is loved. A child who hears Jehovah Jirah tell him he's special, will believe it. I can tell you about the love and grace of God until I'm absolutely blue in the face, but if you haven't experienced it, if you haven't heard and felt the presence of God, you will not believe it.
Connecting to the source of Life is the only way to experience true life. It's the only way back through the rabbit hole, the only path through the labyrinth to reality, the only way back to the Garden, the only way to freedom.