Select Page

Deception & Self Deception

Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times, some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons—1 Timothy 4:1

But evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.—2 Timothy 3:13

Also, know that in the last days, perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; 2 Timothy 3:1-4

“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”—John 8:32

They say if you hear or tell a lie enough, you begin to believe it to be the truth; I can relate to that; I am guilty of this crime. We have all lied, often hiding the truth from ourselves to embellish the facts. We all have told tall tales to garner interest and attention. The “little white lie’ is self-deception and leads to self-destruction and self-loathing. The lie starts early in our lives as children. We hide our devilish ways using sly methods to avoid punishment—”an elephant came in the room and made this mess.” Then our self-deception grows and matures into a character cancer that pulls and tugs us further into deceit.

Jim Carry starred in a movie called Liar-Liar. Jim’s character, an attorney, always told lies and exaggerated truths as part of his daily work and life. Jim’s son hated his father’s deceptions and, on his birthday, wished his father could not tell a lie for a day. The movie is hilarious but makes the point describing the truth can be perilous and get you “in trouble,” something we have avoided since childhood. Jesus said, “The truth shall set us free.” Jesus was talking about spiritual freedom that gives us liberty from the oppression of sin. Jesus’ teachings contradict everything we have grown to understand to be true. The snake has been deceiving us constantly since Adam and Eve bit the apple.

Lulled into acceptance of deception, we are blind to lies. Media bombards us with deceptive narratives, and marketers embellish instant gratification. The name politician has become anonymous as a liar and diabolical cheat. Global elites think the commoners are too stupid to handle the truth—they give us a “false” drug until our will submits to the lie, and we go blind to the truth. The God of this world has closed our eyes to the truth.

Deception is a dragon growing daily in power, a dragon after our souls. But the God of heaven and earth, the God of Abraham, our creator, gives the believer the ultimate weapon we need to defeat the deceiver—the wisdom of His Word and the discernment flowing from it.

My grandfather was a farmer who lived during the great depression, and little remained in his old age. In times of great struggle, he found the word of God and gave hope in hopelessness. Grandpa Stephen was an actual grandfather who sat me on his lap and told me stories of the struggles and how Jesus kept his boat afloat. Grandpa’s funeral was at Rose Valley church, six miles from the farm. Grandpa Stephen was not an educated man, but I discovered he was a poet in that little country church. The funeral flyer they handed everyone included a poem he had written, “The Old Dusty Bible.” In his poetry, he said if we find ourselves in dark places filled with fear, we should look to the Old Dusty Bible and read it with an open contrite heart—I did, and everything changed, the darkness dimmed, and the fear diluted away. I believe on that sole day, my heart and eyes opened to God, and He armed me with discernment.

My faith was cold, Lukewarm, hot, and cold again in the following years. Then in my darkest hour, I cried out to God and prayed a challenging prayer—”Lord, if You get me out of the dark abyss, I will serve You to my death.” Those prayers that bargain with God are prideful to think I could deal with God to solve my self-destructive living. But in the following years, God gave me grace and guidance and pulled me into His light. God led me to the people who showed me how to love God with all my mind, heart, and soul. Most importantly, God gave me a hunger for His Word.

The deceivers and the deceptions of evil surround us. Yet we are blind to the battle between light and darkness. In 2 Kings 6, Elisha was surrounded by the Syrian army, and his servant despaired; he prayed to open the young man’s eyes to see the angel armies protecting them.

Angel Armies—2 Kings 6:15-20:

Enter the FRAY

15 And when the servant of the man of God arose early and went out, there was an army surrounding the city with horses and chariots. And his servant said to him, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” 16 So he answered, “Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 17 And Elisha prayed and said, “Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

The word of God is our sword in today’s deceitful times. God’s wisdom is the sword of discernment that cuts through the lies revealing the truth. Jesus told us:

“You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

God foretold these days of deceit in 2 Timothy 3:1: “This know also know, that in the last days, perilous times shall come.” God also told us how to be prepared, suited in His armor, for the battle we are in today:

The Armor of God— Ephesians 6:10-18

Enter with the Lion of Judah

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

I believe God is revealing evil’s deceit. The headlines do not shock me into despair, for I am armed with the Armor of God. I am no longer blind to the methods of marketing fear and the curtain of misdirection, for there is only darkness and hopelessness behind the curtain. The days of the pandemic 2020-2022 revealed how fear and pain can charade a false hope, for fear is the primary fuel for deception, and pain is the fuel for false pleasure and instant gratification. No drug, no government, can save you in these difficult times. Only the Word of God can bring hope, peace, and truth.

So open that dusty bible set on the shelf and read it.