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Satan

The Great Seducer

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Why will so many people zealously follow Satan’s deceptive ways to their death? There are two primary causes. The first arises from human nature and man’s innate hostility toward God’s ways (Romans 8:7 Romans 8:7Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
American King James Version×
). The second cause is Satan’s mastery in deceiving people.

How does Satan achieve his deception? He uses people to deceive other people. He especially likes to use people who appear to be trustworthy.

A faithful follower of God must exercise care that he is “a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15 2 Timothy 2:15Study to show yourself approved to God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
American King James Version×
). In other words, he must know what the Bible really teaches and use it correctly. He must refuse to gullibly accept a religious practice just because everyone else does it or because it appears right on the surface. Otherwise he is likely to be deceived.

Paul lamented what was happening to some in his day. “For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough” (2 Corinthians 11:4 2 Corinthians 11:4For if he that comes preaches another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if you receive another spirit, which you have not received, or another gospel, which you have not accepted, you might well bear with him.
American King James Version×
, NIV). When false teachers distort the message of the Scriptures, sincere people often fail to see through their deceptions.

Paul continues: “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve” (2 Corinthians 11:13-15 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
American King James Version×
, NIV).

Paul warned that even believers could be led to gullibly accept doctrines taught by false teachers—should they become negligent in studying the Scriptures to verify the truth of their beliefs.

Jesus had earlier warned that Satan and his agents would constantly seek to distract and deceive people in an attempt to turn them against God’s truth. “Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown,” said Christ. “As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them” (Mark 4:15 Mark 4:15And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan comes immediately, and takes away the word that was sown in their hearts.
American King James Version×
, NIV).

He bluntly warned of Satan’s deceptive approach: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:15-16 Matthew 7:15-16 15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 16 You shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
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).

At the time of the end Satan will not change his pattern. He will raise up a powerful false prophet whose influence will not be hindered by political boundaries. Satan will lead the Babylonian religious system centered in Rome and use his prophet to deceive a gullible world that will not carefully check the Bible to see if what he says is really from God (Revelation 19:20 Revelation 19:20And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that worked miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
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).

Paul describes the effect of the deception: “The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness” (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 10 And with all delusion of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
American King James Version×
, NIV).

Never underestimate the skill Satan uses to deceive humanity. The book of Revelation plainly says he is “that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray” (Revelation 12:9 Revelation 12:9And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
American King James Version×
, NIV).

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