Mt. 13:24-30, π 36-43 π Jn. 16:8 π Acts 17:30 π 2 Ths. 2:10-12 π Heb. 13:8 π 2 Pet. 3:16-18
The purpose of this work is to expose, as much as is possible and with as much detail as is practical, the schemes by which the devil and his assistants keep Christ’s followers from attaining to the fullness of His call upon their lives. Too many of Christ’s followers are ignorant of Satan’s devices against them - some even deny there is a devil and are completely unaware of how successful the devil has been in robbing them of their divine heritage in Christ.
This work should not make you fear the devil. Rather it should stir you to vigilance, wariness and wise resistance to his schemes wherein victory over the devil is assured in Christ. If you find yourself becoming very upset or angry at something written in this work, please, please, go immediately to the Afterword.
Paul warned us that those who do not love the truth will be - by God - given over to strong delusion so that they too will perish along with those who don’t believe and obey righteousness. ( 2 Ths. 2:10-12; top ) Truth - absolute, final, ultimate truth - has the unique ability to stand up to all scrutiny and to any and all challenges. In fact, scrutiny and challenge of such a truth only serves to confirm, reinforce and establish that truth for what it is.
When we first hear such a truth, the Holy Spirit of God (also called the Spirit of truth) speaks to our innermost being, calling upon us to receive, accept, believe, embrace and obey that truth. Whether that truth is something new to us or a contradiction of something we previously believed to be true (but which was really false or mistaken), we are instantly forced to make a decision: to change or not to change. If we love the truth, we will change toward obeying that truth. If we do not love the truth, we will reject the truth, setting ourselves on a course of rebellion against God and the result will be that we come under further deception. The only remedy for this is to repent (decide to change) from our acts of rejecting the truth and our lack of love for the truth.
There are many things which war against our ability to walk in God’s truths (pride, fear, tradition, reputation, etc.) and, as we will see in this work, the enemy of truth - Satan, the devil, his angels and the demonic - has been hard at work setting up stumbling blocks that can cause the unwary soul to fall from his steadfast place in the grace, knowledge and Person of Christ. I pray that God would instill within all of us an ever-growing love for truth and a fearless resolve to go and do and be whatever He might lead us into.
In this work, we will often be discussing false counterfeits of the true things of God. When discussing a religious counterfeit, the term will be in “quotes.” One of the devil’s most effective deceptions is to get us to believe that because we know a certain thing is wrong, we could not possibly be participating in that kind of behavior. Let me warn you now against seeing the “quotes” and assuming the statement is about someone else. Ask the Holy Spirit - whose job it is to convict of sin, righteousness and judgment ( Jn. 16:8; top ) - to show you if you have, through ignorance, negligence, deception, or whatever, been a participant or perpetuator of any of the devil’s counterfeits. May your first question in response to any and all that is written herein be, “Lord, is it I?” If He tells you it is so, then be equally diligent to seek His forgiveness and cleansing that we may all walk forward together in greater light and purity.
...those who are untaught and unstable twist [the things Paul wrote which are hard to understand] to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures. You therefore, beloved, since you know these things beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. ( 2 Pet. 3:16-18; top )
This work is an attempt to unravel some of the deceptive threads that have wound themselves around the straight-forward gospel of Christ. In some cases it challenges long-held, deeply-cherished doctrines by exposing the hidden fallacy the doctrine has added to God’s Word. The Scriptures have been twisted, mangled, misused and manipulated in multitudes of ways for centuries. It will be very surprising if any reader does not find at least one of his religious toes stomped on rather well. It takes a great deal of courage to face the fact that for years you have been living some lie in the name of Christ. Your response to the glaring light of Christ’s truth - whether one of humble confession and repentance or one of dismissal, denial and ridicule - will largely indicate whether you are a wheat or a tare. (see Mt. 13:24-30, 36-43; top ) He who has ears to hear will hear the truth. Those who consider the truths herein to be too extreme or too radical are either in denial as to how deep the problems go or else they prefer themselves (and not God) to be the one who controls their own religious beliefs and behaviors. Let it be clearly stated now: God still commands all men everywhere to repent ( Acts 17:30; top ) and He will not change Who and What He really is just to fit into some man’s theology or doctrine. ( Heb. 13:8; top )
This work is, in many ways, a compilation of the milestones my wife and I have encountered in our exodus from the “church” and of nearly a decade of interacting with people who have left the “church” behind but who have managed to bring along at least one or more pieces of leftover religious baggage that taint and sour their expression of the life of Christ within. As we have tried to simply abide in Christ, He has revealed many things to us that have masqueraded for centuries as the way of Christ and He has led us into ever greater light and liberty to truly live in Him. We are not yet perfected by any stretch of the imagination but we have a greater access to a freedom from the lords of darkness than ever before.
Be Careful!!! This work may cause you to question your salvation. Unfortunately, those who - in spite of their adamant claims of following Christ - really need to question their “salvation” are the least likely to do so. And those who have no need whatsoever to question the validity of their salvation are the most likely targets of demonically-inspired fear that they have already lost their salvation. Beware!
Be Prayerful!!! If this work does cause you to question your salvation, with the help of the Spirit of God, look carefully at your life. Are there any signs that you are growing - not have grown (past tense) but growing (present, ongoing action) - in Christ’s grace (life-changing power) and knowledge (true, saving, experiential understandings that conform you to His likeness)? If these signs are present, you are on the road to life and continued diligent application will keep you on that road. If these signs are completely absent or completely in the distant past, you are indeed in danger of being on the road to destruction and you need to repent and draw near again to God who is Light and Life.
Be Watchful!!! Though the subject matter should make this quite obvious - reading this book and embracing the truths contained within it will cause the spiritual warfare around you, your family, your friends and your acquaintances to heat up. Please be prepared and be wary!
I’d love to hear comments and/or questions from you! Email me!