“The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness” – 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 NIV
“ A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep.” — Saul Bellow
The context of 2 Thessalonians is the last days when the false prophet and the anti-Christ are on the scene. We know that the spirit of the anti-christ is alive and well today (1 John 4:3). If you were to say to me that after 30 + years of church ministry I would be talking about false teachings that lead to delusion I would probably have said, “Not in my life-time!” However, right before our eyes we are seeing the spirit of the anti-christ in our world and in many churches.
As a result, delusion and deception are rampant!
Here are just a few realities of deception and some Scripture that refutes these lies:
- Evolution is a fact of science that cannot be refuted (See 2 Peter 2). Sadly, this not only pervades the secular world but also is the dominant conclusion of many pastors and elders in evangelical churches. Just yesterday a pastor reached out to me to get a hold of the teaching series I did in Genesis. (See my website and click on the “Origins” icon. The messages were not edited so they have some church announcements and other details on them.) He said, “Dale, you were ahead of your time. It looks like you were at the beginning of this new movement of ‘the truth about Genesis.’” Of course, we know this is simply timeless truth consistent with a straightforward reading of Genesis 1 and 2! I’m encouraged that many – like this pastor – are zealous to proclaim the truth about our origins.
- The right to choose to abort children in the womb supersedes the right for the innocent child to survive in the womb (Psalm 139:13-17). Sadly, as one elder once asked me several years ago: “Dale, why are you so upset with the abortion issue, it has no bearing on our lives?” Can you imagine?
- You are born with the genetic disposition to be homosexual or lesbian (Romans 1:2-29).
- The rich are to give of their wealth to the entitled poor (Luke 19:11-27).
- The death penalty is obsolete and no longer applicable to our modern society (Genesis 9:6; Acts 25:11).
- Every person is essentially good and therefore you ought to trust and assume the best in people (Jeremiah 17:19).
These are only a few of the beliefs that are massively accepted in our society, but which are contrary to the clear message of God’s Word.
We ought to judge all things: “But he that is spiritual judges all things,…” (1 Corinthians 2:15) on what the “world system propagates,” but we are not to have a condemning spirit for that is prerogative of God alone, (Romans 12:19).
When it comes to these cultural deceptions, I am disturbed when Christians do not stand up and stand out to render a righteous judgment (John 7:24). Remember, deception starts with erosion and erosion occurs as Christians cease to teach certain truths over a period of time. On any given Sunday a Pastor will teach truth, but what they do NOT teach over a period of time, is often what makes up false teaching. We are responsible to communicate the whole counsel of God! (Acts 20:27). This is the beginning of deception, false doctrine, compromise and delusion.
Selah: think and ponder this!