[The text below represents an edited transcript of this Tomorrow’s World program.]
“The Devil Made Me Do It”?
Does a spirit being named Satan the devil really exist? Or is he just the imagination of artists, sculptors, and fiction writers? My friends, one of the greatest deceptions would be the idea that this deceiver does not really exist. When we review the history of the world, and the deceptions of various religions we find strong evidence that the Devil, called Satan, has been very active in history, but WE NEED TO REALIZE that he is very active even now. Have you been deceived? Your Bible makes this astounding statement, Revelation 12:9:
“So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world.”
Do you know the Devil’s strategies, deceptions, and devices? The Apostle Paul stated in 2 Corinthians 2:11: “We are not ignorant of his [Satan’s] devices.”
Deceivers are out to deceive us and cheat us. Liars and con-artists strive to defraud us. But above them all there’s a great deceiver whom your Bible calls Satan the Devil. Millions of people dabble in the occult and seek answers from soothsayers and mystics. These dark practices are deceptive.
Do you know Satan’s schemes and deceptive devices? You need to know the Devil’s deadly deceptions!
Wrong Desires and the Lies We Tell to Fulfill Them
Warm greetings to all our friends around the world.
Millions of con-artists, deceivers, and charlatans are out to deceive you and me. Some salesmen do their best to defraud senior citizens and rob them of their investments. And yet there are other forms of deception. The Harry Potter books featuring the occult have sold millions. Others look to séances, tarot cards, channeling, and astrology for power and insight. Millions of people dabble in the occult and seek answers from soothsayers and mystics. Others seek selfish short-term physical pleasure, with no thought of morality or consequences.
On today’s program, we’ll examine seven of the deadliest deceptions offered by Satan the Devil.
Our Savior, Jesus Christ, warned us to be on guard against the Devil’s deadly deceptions. Matthew 24:3:
“Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, ‘Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?’ And Jesus answered and said to them: ‘Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.’”
Yes, many, not just a few, will fall victim to Satan’s deceptions. The first deception we’ll cover today is lust. Human nature is filled with vanity, jealousy, greed, and lust. Satan can take advantage of that tendency and weakness in all of us. He sends temptation through the media, movies, television, the Internet, magazines, and through carnal and covetous individuals. Teenagers growing into adulthood are very prone to the sexual messages readily available to them on the Internet.
Many married people give in to the seducing temptations of others and commit adultery. The Apostle Paul warned married couples not to deprive one another from sexual relations. Otherwise, Satan could take advantage of our carnal nature. 1 Corinthians 7:5:
“Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.”
In our modern age, sexual temptations are all around us. So, the Apostle Paul advised those who might lack self-control,
“Nevertheless, because of sexual immorality, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband” (1 Corinthians 7:2).
Let’s understand, my friends, that lust, greed, and covetousness is sin. The Tenth Commandment states:
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s” (Exodus 20:17).
The 1987 movie Wall Street featured the corporate investor Gordon Gekko, who made the famous statement, “Greed is Good!” No, my friends, greed leads to idolatry. How many millions around us make idols of business moguls and entertainers whose wealth they envy?
You must not lust for sexual sin, or for the wealth you see other people trying to enjoy. God promises to provide all your needs—but all your godly needs, of course. That promise is in Philippians 4:19. Let’s also understand that covetousness is a form of idolatry. You can desire a person, position, or possession so strongly that it becomes an idol to [you]. As it states in Colossians 3:5,
“Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”
Instead of being filled with envy and covetousness, be thankful for all the blessings God has given you. Satan’s Deception #1 is: Lust. My friends, pray, as Jesus taught us,
“And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen” (Matthew 6:13).
Deception #2 is: Lying. There’s a classic example of lying in the New Testament. Members of the early Christian church donated property and funds to help fellow Christians. However, one individual named Ananias, committed fraud. He claimed to have given all of the proceeds to the Church, but held back some of the funds. He lied to the Apostle Peter. Let’s read the story in Acts 5:
“But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession. And he kept back part of the proceeds, his wife also being aware of it, and brought a certain part and laid it at the apostles’ feet. [Now listen to this] But Peter said, ‘Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself? While it remained, was it not your own? And after it was sold, was it not in your own control? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.’ Then Ananias, hearing these words, fell down and breathed his last. So great fear came upon all those who heard these things” (Acts 5:1).
Sapphira, his wife, came to Peter later. She lied, and she experienced the same judgment as her husband. She died on the spot! Let’s understand. Satan is the father of lies, as it states in John 8:44. My friends, examine yourself. Monitor your communications. Do you shade the truth? Or do you simply lie? Don’t let Satan take advantage of you, as he did with Ananias and Sapphira. Remember, the ninth commandment states:
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor” (Exodus 20:16).
And let’s also realize that you can LIVE a lie. I’m afraid that too many professing Christians are doing just that! As it states in 1 John 2:4,
“He who says, ‘I know Him,’ [that he knows the Lord] and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”
My friends, ask God to help you to speak the truth, and live the truth!
Human Conceit and the Vanity of the Occult
We’ve seen that Satan wants to entice us with lust and lying. The third Satanic deception we’ll discuss is PRIDE, VANITY, AND ARROGANCE. Selfishness and egotism are part and parcel of human nature. We like to feel important. That desire can lead to deception. The Apostle Paul instructed Timothy concerning the ordination of a bishop, or an overseer. In 1 Timothy 3:6, he wrote that such a candidate should:
“not [be] a novice, lest being PUFFED UP WITH PRIDE he fall into the same condemnation as the devil. Moreover he must have a good testimony among those who are outside, lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.”
My friends, do you let pride and vanity guide your thinking and behavior? If so, you can be deceived. You can be snared by the devil. How do you counteract self-centeredness and vanity? The Apostle James wrote:
“Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up” (James 4:10).
James also gives us this encouragement in verse 7,
“Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”
Remember the biblical examples of those who cultivated pride, and did not give glory to God? King Herod allowed himself to be worshipped as a god! He cultivated vanity and arrogance. And what happened to him? Acts 12:21,
“So on a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat on his throne and gave an oration to them. And the people kept shouting, ‘The voice of a god and not of a man!’ Then immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he did not give glory to God. And he was eaten by worms and died. But the word of God grew and multiplied.”
Another king who had to learn lessons the hard way was King Nebuchadnezzar. When he neglected to take the prophet Daniel’s advice to repent, God took Nebuchadnezzar’s kingdom away from him. And King Nebuchadnezzar lived like an animal for seven years, until he learned his lesson. You can read about that in Daniel the fourth chapter.
My friends, be on guard against pride. When God blesses you, give Him the glory. As it says in 1 Corinthians 1:31,
“He who glories, let him glory in the LORD.”
Deception #3 is: Pride, Vanity, and Arrogance.
Satanic Deception #4 is: False Dreams, Visions, and Miracles. How many times have individuals told me their dreams or visions that were obviously Satan-inspired? Some thought they had seen Jesus. He supposedly appeared to have the traditional long hair. But the Jesus of the Bible did not have long hair. The Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 11:14,
“Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?” (King James Version).
Jesus escaped out of crowds on several occasions because He looked like the average Judean man of His day. That means He did not have long hair! My friends, do not be deceived by dreams, visions, or appealing messages. The Apostle John wrote in 1 John 4:1,
“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
The occult appeals to many people. Some try to contact their deceased relatives through mediums. Children read Harry Potter books and become fascinated with the occult. Satanic video games are popular. You need to educate your children on the dangers of the occult, satanic activities, and other demonic influences. God Almighty condemns witchcraft and sorcery. He tells us in Deuteronomy 18:12,
“For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD.”
Be sure to read Deuteronomy 18:9–14 and Galatians 5:20.
Satan uses dreams, visions, and miracles to deceive people. The book of Revelation describes the great false prophet who will arise soon. Be sure to read this in your own Bible. Revelation 13:11,
“Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb [a counterfeit of Christ] and spoke like a dragon. And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived.”
My friends, don’t be deceived! Religious leaders will perform great signs and miracles. Be sure that you test all such leaders with the Bible, the word of God. That’s why we say, don’t believe us just because we tell you, check these references in your Bible—believe your Bible. As it says in Isaiah 8:20,
“To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.”
Satanic Deception #4 is: False Dreams, Visions, and Miracles.
False Religion and the Loss of Faith
Some of the most deadly lies of the devil are in the realm of false doctrine, false religious teaching. Where did you learn about Christianity? Amazingly, Satan has convinced most Christians to believe and do those things Jesus never taught!
Satanic deception 5 is: FALSE DOCTRINE. Where do we find godly doctrine or teaching? Jesus said in JOHN 8:32,
“[Y]ou shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
Truth is revealed in the Bible, but we must also practice the truth. Jesus said in the previous verse, verse 31:
“If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.”
But the majority will not practice the truth. The Apostle Paul prophesied that religious people would seek teachers to preach what they want to hear, rather than teachers who would preach the truth of the Bible. Turn in your Bible to 2 Timothy 4:2. The Apostle Paul exhorted the young evangelist Timothy:
“Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.”
My friends, are you willing to be guided and corrected by the Bible? Or will you be turned aside to fables? One of the major errors of professing Christianity is the practice, by some, of pagan traditions. We’ve documented them on previous programs. Easter eggs are a pagan symbol of fertility; decorated trees, holly wreaths, and mistletoe were pagan traditions; December 25 was celebrated as the birth of Mithras, the sun god. It was never the date of Jesus’ birth. Should Christians observe Valentine’s Day? In 496 AD, Pope Gelasius I established the Feast of St. Valentine on February 14. Previously, since the days of ancient Rome, young lovers had often observed the Lupercalia—the feast of Lupercus, a fertility god—on February 15. Even in ancient Greece, mid-February was associated with love and fertility; the Greek month of Gamelion, ending in mid-February, was associated with the marriage of the gods Zeus and Hera.
The historian Will Durant gave this analysis in his book The Story of Civilization:
“Christianity did not destroy paganism; it adopted it. The Greek mind, dying, came to a transmigrated life in the theology and liturgy of the church; the Greek language, having reigned for centuries over philosophy, became the vehicle of Christian literature and ritual; the Greek mysteries passed down into the impressive mystery of the Mass. Other pagan cultures contributed to the syncretist result…. Christianity was the last creation of the ancient pagan world” (pp. 595, 599).
My friends, are you practicing pagan traditions in the name of Christianity? Remember Jesus’ warning to the Pharisees and scribes concerning certain religious customs. He warned them in Mark 7:9,
“All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition.”
The world is full of false religions, false traditions, and false doctrine. My friends, be on guard against the deceptions of Satan! Deception #5 is: False Doctrine.
Satanic Deception #6 is: Lack of Faith. The patriarch Job was attacked by Satan. Job remained faithful to God and learned vital spiritual lessons. At one point Job said,
“For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me, and what I dreaded has happened to me” (Job 3:25).
In our modern language, we might call this a self-fulfilling prophecy. We must face our fears and pray for God’s protection and intervention. We must exercise faith. When we study the Bible and believe God’s promises, He gives us faith. At it states in Romans 10:17,
“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
Lack of faith opens us to Satanic deceptions. The book of Hebrews recounts the faithlessness of ancient Israel. They lacked trust and faith in God. We need to learn from their hardness of heart. Hebrews 3:12,
“Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called ‘Today,’ lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”
Those who lack faith in Christ, and who persist in trusting Satan, will ultimately be destroyed as it tells us in Revelation 21:8:
“But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”
But the good news is emphasized in verse 7:
“He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.”
Is There an Unpardonable Sin? Can Satan Lead You to Committing It? Can It Be Overcome?
When we fail or hurt, it can be easy to become bitter about what has happened. Our hurt can turn to a grudge, or to a desire for revenge. If we nurse those feelings, they can turn to hate, and then hate can turn into bitterness. Our seventh Satanic deception is: bitterness. My friends, you must identify and overcome any feelings of hate and bitterness. Notice this instruction in Hebrews 12:14:
“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled.”
Such bitterness can even lead to the unpardonable sin. How do you counteract those feelings? Simply by following Jesus’ instructions. He said in Matthew 5:44,
“But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”
My friends, pray for your enemies. Bless those who curse you. That’s the Christian way. That’s the way that will overcome Satan’s infectious attitude of hate and bitterness! Avoid Satanic Deception #7: Bitterness.
My friends, God wants you to be His trusting and faithful son or daughter through Jesus Christ our Lord. He will give you His faith, if you turn to Him with your whole heart. If you feel God is calling you, and you desire to follow His command to repent, and be baptized, we have representatives around the world who will be happy to counsel you and help you understand the baptismal commitment.
In the meantime, arm yourself with spiritual knowledge. Do not allow yourself to be deceived by yourself, by the world, or by Satan. As the Apostle Paul emphasized:
“… we are not ignorant of his [Satan’s] devices” (2 Corinthians 2:11).
Bible prophecy predicts that a great future false religious system will deceive and influence billions of people all over the earth. Don’t you be deceived!
Thank you for watching!
My friends, you need to know how you can avoid the Devil’s deceptions. Our booklet Satan’s Counterfeit Christianity reveals a massive, global deception that has gone on for many centuries and will show you how the Devil has corrupted most of the world’s professing Christian churches. You can receive your own copy for free by clicking the link in the description. And remember to subscribe to our channel so you don’t miss another Tomorrow’s World video.