Guard Against Deception :: By Nathele Graham

Deception is one of the most toxic problems to a Christian’s faith and their walk with the Lord. “My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee; so that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; if thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding” (Proverbs 2:1-6).

It’s easy to be deceived if you haven’t kept up with Bible study. Seeking the wisdom of God is the only way to know God’s truth and not be deceived by the lies of Satan. There are many lies out there, and it’s easy to be confused if you don’t have a solid foundation built upon the word of God. There are many people who profess to be Christians but are deceived in their teaching. Many cults call themselves Christian but don’t teach Biblical truth. The only way to guard against deception is to study Scripture and earnestly pray for discernment.

Every Christian must, first and foremost, honor God with their lives. That means turning away from the world. When it comes to a choice between the ways of the world and the way of the Lord, choose wisely. Only Scripture, studied in its entirety, will keep you from being deceived. “NUN. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105).

We live in a time when it’s easy to turn on the TV or look on the internet and find many people who speak words that sound good but are in direct opposition to God’s word. God has never changed, and He never will change. Satan wants you to turn from God, and he will befuddle you with half-truths and outright lies in his effort to draw you away from God. Satan is darkness, but Jesus is the Light of the World.

“Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life” (John 8:12).

In order to understand the Light of God, study His word. Pray for wisdom, and the Holy Spirit living in you will open God’s truth to your understanding. Whenever you listen to a Bible teacher, a preacher, or a commentator, look to Scripture in order to test their words.

When a person first comes to a saving knowledge of Christ, they cannot possibly have the wisdom that comes from God. A babe in Christ must be fed on the truth of Scripture. Then that person must change their life to fit God’s ways rather than changing God’s words to fit their lifestyles. All Christians must desire to please God.

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever” (Psalm 111:10).

God’s truth is found in Scripture, from the first verse in Genesis to the last verse in Revelation. Don’t skip reading the Old Testament because you think that only the New Testament matters to a Christian. In His first incarnation, Jesus fulfilled the Old Testament Law and many, many prophecies; He will fulfill all other prophecies very soon when He returns. All Scripture is God-breathed, and we need to understand what’s written there and learn God’s truth. God’s standards are shown to us by the Law, which required works in order to please God. Jesus did fulfill the Law, and His blood was shed for the once-for-all sacrifice for our sin. All who believe in Him will find salvation.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8).

Because of that grace, our sins are forgiven, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t desire to please God. Our way of living needs to conform to God’s truth rather than the ways of the world. Don’t be deceived by false prophets who speak satanic lies. God doesn’t want anyone to be deceived.

“He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: he is a buckler to them that walk uprightly” (Proverbs 2:7).

Wisdom is found in God’s word, while deceit is found in the ways of the world.

Wisdom comes from God. The question is, how do you get wisdom? First, desire it, and then ask God. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him” (James 1:5).

God doesn’t want anyone to be deceived by false teachers, but He won’t force His wisdom upon anyone. If you love Him, you should desire to know His ways. He will give you a foundation of knowledge of His word, and you need to build your life on the ways of God. You can’t please God by living a double life… professing your love for Him while living a sinful life.

“A double minded man is unstable in all his ways” (James 1:8).

Don’t deceive yourself into thinking that there are special circumstances in your life that make your sin OK with God. We must move away from sin and not try to justify our life-choices by using a double standard. Many people will try to deceive you, but you can’t please God by living contrary to His word.

We are living in the last days. That’s a fact, but it’s another area that you can easily be deceived about if you haven’t studied prophecy. The urgency of spreading God’s truth to the unsaved has never been stronger. Everyone must hear the Good News of salvation through Jesus Christ before death, but as the last days of earth’s history are rapidly approaching, there’s a double urgency to spread the Gospel. The deception of false teachers is evidence that time is short. Jesus said deception will get stronger as time comes to an end.

“And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them” (Luke 21:8).

It’s up to you to be sure that you don’t fall for deception. There are many lies that are passed off as Christianity, such as Mormonism, but their teachings are in direct opposition to Scripture. One of the worst lies that Satan spews is that all paths lead to heaven. Search the Scriptures to see for yourself that faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross is the only way to salvation. Don’t be deceived, and be sure you have answers to defend your faith.

The Apostle Paul had some wise words for a young pastor named Timothy. He urged Timothy to stand firm on the truth he had been taught and not be deceived by the evil people who tried to deceive believers even in those days.

“But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; and that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:13-15).

Timothy had been taught Scripture since childhood, and Paul urged him not to waiver from the truth of God’s word. If you’re tempted to follow a teacher who supports a “name it and claim it” theology, or “all roads lead to heaven,” or “Jesus and Satan are brothers,” get away quick before you are deceived by their lies. Study Scripture and let God’s word be the lamp that lights your ways.

Don’t be deceived about the times in which we live. The end is coming quickly. Many people say that every generation thought they were the last, but these people haven’t studied prophecy and speak in ignorance.

There are some end-time lies that are very deceptive. Some would have you believe that Christians have replaced Israel. That’s a lie. God’s covenant with Abraham was forever, and an honest study of Daniel’s end-times prophecy will teach you that those last days are about Israel returning to God and recognizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Some would have you believe that God will have Christians go through the Tribulation or at least part of it. That’s a lie. You can study Revelation to see that Christians are not on earth during Daniel’s 70th week. We are called to Heaven at the beginning of Revelation chapter 4 and are in Heaven in chapters 4 and 5. Chapter 6 and the following chapters describe the seven years of the Great Tribulation, at the end of which the nation of Israel will call on Jesus as their Messiah.

Some deceived teachers see the Tribulation Saints (those who come to faith in Jesus during those final 7 years) as a part of the Ekklesia. Those brave believers will have come to faith after the Rapture and will face death unless they deny Christ.

Deception has always been strong, but there will come a time when God will have had enough of our rebellious nature and will send a strong delusion.

“And for this cause God shall send them a strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (2 Thessalonians 2:11-12).

We can see that people are ripe for deception today. I’ve often wondered how people will so easily be deceived, but as I’ve watched the deception during the last few years in American history and the fiasco and deception in the last Presidential election, I can see that gullible people who have no firm foundation in Christ are easily swayed to believe anything that the satanically fueled proponents of liberal politics, media censorship, and the one world order say. Some of the deceived even call themselves Christians.

Be sure that you’re not one of those who believe lies and are deceived. Turn off the TV, put down the video games, get off the phone, and pick up your Bible. Study Scripture. The only way to guard against deception is to study, believe, and live God’s word.

God bless you all,

Nathele Graham

All original scripture is “theopneustos,” God-breathed.

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