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Deception (Part 03) - The Victims of Deception, Characteristics of Deceivers

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V. The victims of deception

1. Deceivers often prey on peaceful and vulnerable people that are minding their own business (Psa 35:20).
A. We should pray to be delivered from deceitful men (Psa 43:1; Psa 120:2).
B. It is especially important to pray to be saved from deceivers because by their very nature they are hard to recognize and detect.
C. When God's poor saints cry to Him to be delivered from deception, the Lord will save them from it (Psa 72:12-14; Rom 10:13).

2. Deceivers often beguile unstable people (2Pe 2:14).
A. Unstable adj. - 1. a. Not remaining steadily in the same place; apt to move or be moved about.
i. Unstable people are not grounded in the knowledge of the scriptures and are therefore easily swayed (Eph 4:14).
ii. This is why it's so important to be steadfast and unmovable in the faith (1Co 15:58).
iii. We must be grounded and settled and not moved from the hope of the gospel (Col 1:23).
B. They look for stupid people who are easy targets (2Ti 3:6).
C. Silly adj. - 5. a. Lacking in judgement or common sense; foolish, senseless, empty-headed. 1611 Bible 2 Tim. iii. 6 Of this sort are they which creep into houses, and leade captiue silly women.
D. This is why it's imperative to get wisdom from the word of God to avoid being deceived (Pro 4:5-7; Pro 1:4; Pro 2:10-12).

VI. Characteristics of deceivers

1. The deceiver is under God's control and can only deceive if God allows him to (Job 12:16).
2. Deceivers love telling lies to mislead people (Psa 52:2-4).

3. Deceivers don't stay true to their word and make promises that they don't keep when it's not convenient for them to do so (Gen 31:7-9; Exo 8:29).
A. If you are the kind of person who says he is going to do something and then doesn't do it, you are not in good company.
B. Through years of dealing with people, I have learned to manage my expectations.
i. I quickly learn who keeps his word (even in little things) and who doesn't.
ii. When I'm dealing with a person who doesn't follow through on what he says he is going to do, I don't expect him do what he says he is going to.
iii. Therefore, I tend to not get disappointed with most people.
iv. Only when a faithful and reliable person fails to follow through with his promises do I normally get disappointed.

4. When a deceiver is caught, he will usually not admit his guilt, but will rather try to excuse it as a joke (Pro 26:18-19).
A. I have had people when confronted try to say that they were only kidding when they said what they did.
B. Such as person will often try to blame the person whom they offended for taking their "joke" seriously.

5. Deceivers will often accuse those who tell the truth of deception (Joh 7:12).
A. No deceit ever came out of Jesus Christ's mouth (Isa 53:9).
B. So just because someone is accused of being a deceiver doesn't mean that he is.
C. We must therefore use sound judgment and discernment to identify deceivers.

6. When you find a man who is deceitful, you have found a man that has evil imaginations (Pro 12:20).
7. A deceitful man is a foolish man (Pro 14:8).

8. Deceitful people are hypocrites (Job 15:34-35).
A. Hypocrite n. - 1. One who falsely professes to be virtuously or religiously inclined; one who pretends to have feelings or beliefs of a higher order than his real ones; hence generally, a dissembler, pretender.
B. False churches are full of hypocrites and deceivers.
C. There are plenty of wicked people who put on a show quoting scripture, but they don't keep it, and inwardly they are full of deceit (Psa 50:16-19).
D. God will tread them down (Psa 119:118).

9. A man that deceives you hates you (Pro 26:24; Pro 10:18).
A. Dissemble v. - 1. trans. To alter or disguise the semblance of (one's character, a feeling, design, or action) so as to conceal, or deceive as to, its real nature; to give a false or feigned semblance to; to cloak or disguise by a feigned appearance.
B. He deceives by speaking fair (Pro 26:25).
i. Fair adj. - 1. Beautiful to the eye; of pleasing form or appearance; good-looking. 4. Of language, diction: Elegant. Hence fair speaker. 5. a. Of external manifestations, words, promises: Attractive or pleasing at the first sight or hearing; specious, plausible, flattering.
ii. When you hear speech that is flattering, or sounds too pleasing, don't believe it (Pro 26:25).
C. His hatred is covered by deceit (Pro 26:26).
D. He will only be able to hide it for so long before it is exposed to the whole church (Pro 26:26).

10. Deceivers will even try to deceive God (Mal 1:14).
A. God curses such wicked men.
B. They may be able to fool other men, but not God.

VII. Identifying deceivers

1. Satan is the ultimate deceiver (Rev 12:9; Rev 20:10).
A. Deception is a chief tactic used by Satan and his followers to cause us to sin (1Ti 2:14).
i. Satan is subtle (Gen 3:1).
a. Subtle adj. - 1. Of thin consistency, tenuous; not dense, rarefied; hence, penetrating, pervasive or elusive by reason of tenuity (now chiefly of odours). 5. Of immaterial things: Not easily grasped, understood, or perceived; intricate, abstruse. 10. Of persons or animals: Crafty, cunning; treacherously or wickedly cunning, insidiously sly, wily. 1535 Coverdale Gen. iii. 1 The serpent was sotyller then all the beastes of the felde.
b. Subtle men device wicked schemes that are hard to detect by the unsuspecting (2Sa 13:3-5).
ii. Satan has many wiles which he employs to deceive (Eph 6:11).
a. Wile n. - 1. A crafty, cunning, or deceitful trick; a sly, insidious, or underhand artifice; a stratagem, ruse. Formerly sometimes in somewhat wider sense: A piece of deception, a deceit, a delusion.
b. We must not be ignorant of his devices (2Co 2:11).
c. Device n. - 1. The action of devising, contriving, or planning; the faculty of devising, inventive faculty; invention, ingenuity.
d. Notice that the words wiles and devices are both in the plural, which means that Satan has many different tactics that he uses to deceive us.
e. We will look at the many methods of deception later in this study.