“Beware lest you be deceived. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am He,’ and ‘The time has drawn near.’ Therefore do not go after them.” – Jesus, Luke 21:8
The Lord Jesus warns us to take care of ourselves so that we won’t be deceived. A great deception is coming, or has already come, to try and deceive the people of God. Are you deceived? I pray we won’t be.
Deception versus Truth
The Lord Jesus did say that of all the things the deceiver will do, he will introduce himself as “He” and try to impersonate the very Lord of lords and King of kings who has defeated him. And just like any fakes, there are telltale signs that we can check to find if he has already deceived us.
Would you like to know if you’ve been deceived by the enemy? Here are three sure signs.
1. What you believe in goes against the truth of God’s Word
A great many Christians nowadays are easily deceived without knowing it. Some of them read their Bibles, go to church on Sundays, and yet fail to live the life that God wants us to live: a life obedient to His Word.
James 1:22 reminds us, “Be doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.”
When we hear God’s Word but don’t do what it says, it simply shows that we don’t believe what it says. We merely hear it. Perhaps, we could even project an image of holiness, but deep in our hearts and minds we don’t accept the Word of God.
God will never go against His Word. If what we believe in is not founded in or goes against the very Word of God, what we are believing in is a lie.
2. We easily believe anything that comes our way
When we tend to easily believe whatever comes our way, we will be easily deceived. The world – of course, Satan – offers all sorts of meaningless words and empty “knowledge,” disguising them as “wisdom.” No, wisdom only comes from the fear of the Lord God (see Proverbs 9:10).
We are told to be vigilant, not believing everything we hear. 1 John 4:1-3 tells us,
“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and is already in the world.”
3. You’re going with the wrong company
OK, you might say that you’re in the truth and are not deceived, but look at the people you’re spending time with. 1 Corinthians 15:33 tells us, “Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company ruins good morals.”
Who we go with says something about the state of our heart.
Dear friends, think about it. If your circle of friends consists of people who don’t love God, why have fellowship with them if you confess to love God (see 2 Corinthians 6:14-18)? Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean to say that you won’t spend time with your unsaved friends, but if you spend more time with them instead of those who love God and pursue Him, ask yourself why.
While we must be willing to reach out to the unsaved and the lost so that we could bring Christ’s love to them, we must be careful not to allow their wrong beliefs to influence us.
“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night.” (Psalm 1:1-2)