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Deception (Part 11) - Methods of Deception (Part D)

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8. Deception is accomplished by disguising one's true appearance.

A. False prophets deceive people by wearing clothing that make them look like true prophets (Zec 13:4).
i. Popes where royal apparel and funny-looking hats.
ii. Priests where the clergy collar.
iii. Preachers where robes and suits.

B. Saul disguised himself by putting on other clothing so the witch at Endor would not recognize him (1Sa 28:8).
C. Saul was able to deceive the woman (1Sa 28:12).
D. False prophets deceive the saints by dressing up like sheep, but under the disguise they are wolves (Mat 7:15).
i. In order to identify a false prophet, we must look beyond the appearance and examine his fruit (Mat 7:16-20; Joh 7:24).
ii. We must examine his doctrine as well (1Jo 4:1-3; 1Co 14:37).
iii. If he speaks not according to the word of God, there is no light in him (Isa 8:20).

E. The Gibeonites deceived Joshua and the Israelites by disguising themselves and pretending to be someone they were not (Jos 9:3-6).
i. Wilily adv. - In a wily manner; craftily, cunningly, by stratagem.
ii. Wily adj. - 1. Full of or characterized by wiles; crafty, cunning, sly, artful.
iii. The Gibeonites made up a good sounding story that matched their disguise (Jos 9:7-13).
iv. Joshua and Israel were beguiled by their disguise and cover story (Jos 9:22).
v. Beguile v. - 1. trans. To entangle or over-reach with guile; to delude, deceive, cheat.
vi. To avoid being beguiled, always seek counsel from God through prayer, reading the scriptures, and asking advice from wise men (Psa 119:24 c/w Pro 11:14 c/w Pro 15:22).
vii. Had Joshua and Israel done that they would not have been deceived (Jos 9:14).
viii. In the case of the Gibeonites Israel was not harmed, but often people who deceive us do intend to harm us; so beware!

9. Deception is sometimes accomplished by using false philosophy (Col 2:8).
A. Philosophy n. - 1. a. (In the original and widest sense.) The love, study, or pursuit of wisdom, or of knowledge of things and their causes, whether theoretical or practical. 6. a. Sometimes used especially of knowledge obtained by natural reason, in contrast with revealed knowledge. 1388 Wyclif Col. ii. 8 That no man disseyue Šou bi filosofie [1382 philosofye] and veyn fallace, aftir the tradicioun of men, aftir the elementis of the world and not aftir Crist.
B. The philosophy that is condemned in Col 2:8 is the wisdom of this world (1Co 1:19-21).
i. This philosophy is after the tradition of men (Col 2:8).
a. After prep. - IV. Of manner. 12. Following as one follows a leader or guide; in obedience to, in compliance or harmony with, according to a law, will, word, advice.
b. Tradition n. - 1. The action of handing over (something material) to another; delivery, transfer. (Chiefly in Law.)
c. In other words, this philosophy is in accordance and harmony with ideas of men which have been handed down over time.
d. Jesus warned us about the traditions of men that make the word of God of none effect (Mar 7:9, 13).
ii. It is after the rudiments of the world (Col 2:8).
a. Rudiment n. - 1. a. pl. The first principles or elements of a subject; those points which are first taught to, or acquired by, one commencing the study or practice of a branch of knowledge, art, etc.
b. World n. - I. Human existence; a period of this. 1. a. Chiefly this world, the world: the earthly state of human existence; this present life. 4. a. Secular (or lay) life and interests, as distinguished from religious (or clerical); also (by association with III, as in b and d below), secular (or lay) people. d. In biblical and religious use: Those who are concerned only with the interests and pleasures of this life or with temporal or mundane things; the worldly and irreligious.
c. In other words, this philosophy is in accordance and harmony with the knowledge of ungodly men.
iii. It is not after Christ (Col 2:8).
a. This philosophy in Col 2:8 is not in accordance and harmony with Christ and His doctrine.
b. Jesus Christ is the truth (Joh 14:6).
c. God's word of truth (Joh 17:17).
d. In other words, this philosophy is not in accordance and harmony with the truth.
iv. True philosophy is in agreement with the truth revealed in the word of God.
a. True philosophy arrives at the truth of how things actually are through reasoning from observation.
b. True philosophy is never in contradiction with Christ and His word.
v. Any philosophy which arrives at a conclusion that is contrary to the word of God is deceitful philosophy and must be rejected.
C. Beware of men with advanced degrees will often use their credentials as a cover for the lies they tell (Psa 62:9).
D. Beware of the enticing words of man's wisdom (1Co 2:4).

10. Deception is sometimes accomplished by sorcery (Rev 18:23).

A. Sorcery n. - 1. The use of magic or enchantment; the practice of magic arts; witchcraft.
i. Magic n. - 1. a. The pretended art of influencing the course of events, and of producing marvellous physical phenomena, by processes supposed to owe their efficacy to their power of compelling the intervention of spiritual beings, or of bringing into operation some occult controlling principle of nature; sorcery, witchcraft. Also, the practice of this art.
ii. Witchcraft n. - 1. The practices of a witch or witches; the exercise of supernatural power supposed to be possessed by persons in league with the devil or evil spirits.
iii. Magic and witchcraft are real things.
iv. Don't be deceived into thinking they are harmless.
v. (More on this later in the section on resisting deception.)

B. The Galatians were bewitched into believing a lie (Gal 3:1).
i. Bewitched adj. - 1. Influenced by witchcraft; under, or having, magical influence.
ii. Bewitch v. - 1. trans. To affect (generally injuriously) by witchcraft or magic. Sometimes with complemental phrase defining the result. 2. fig. To influence in a way similar to witchcraft; to fascinate, charm, enchant. Formerly often in a bad sense; but now generally said of pleasing influences.
iii. This bewitching was done by Jews who feigned themselves believers and deceived the Galatians into believing that they needed to be circumcised and keep the law to be saved (Act 15:1-2, 5 c/w Gal 2:1-5; Gal 4:21; Gal 5:1-4).
a. These Jews had made a deal with the devil (Isa 28:14-18).
b. Many of the Jews in that generation were possessed with devils (Mat 12:43-45).
c. It is likely that the Galatians were literally bewitched by evil spirits working in the wicked Jews who persuaded them to turn from the truth.
iv. Beware of those who mix grace with works in an attempt to deceive you into believing the lie of works salvation.

C. Simon used sorcery to bewitch the people of Samaria into believing that he was the great power of God (Act 8:9-11).
i. After he was supposedly converted, he offered to pay the apostles to have the power to give the Holy Ghost to those he would lay hands on (Act 8:13, 18-19).
ii. It appears that Simon was a false convert who was simply enamored with the miracles the apostles performed (Act 8:20-24).
iii. Beware of men who have dabbled in the occult in the past and take an interest in the faith for any reason other than for the truth's sake.
iv. Such men may not be truly converted and may try to deceive you into believing a lie through sorcery.
v. People like this can creep into the church.
a. I know an ex-church member who claimed to have had an out of body experience during a car accident when he was a teenager.
b. He claimed to have exerted superhuman strength when practicing martial arts in a cult around the same time.
c. He studied and practiced the occult prior to his conversion.
d. He claimed that he and his wife saw a ghost/devil in their bedroom after their conversion.
e. He hypnotized a member of another church which was confirmed by another church member.
f. He told a member of another church that he could get into heightened meditative state in which he could read whole pages of the Bible in seconds and understand everything he read.
g. If a man tells you that he has experienced such things, be very wary of him. He just might be a devil masquerading as a Christian.