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Stop The Deception-Part 2

Stop The Deception-Part 2
Deceiving And Being Deceived

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come... evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. 2Timothy 3:1,13 (NKJV)

In Part 1 of this devotional series titled, "Stop the Deception," we looked at the verse in James 1:22-24, which encourages us to be doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving ourselves.  We looked at the stern warning and a great promise given by Jesus for those who do what He commanded, including Christ's acceptance or denial of knowing those depending on their choice of obedience or willful disobedience.  

Even with such stern warnings, mankind has freely chosen to walk independently from God throughout history.  It didn't take long either, as Adam and Eve chose to eat of the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, and we continue to choose this independent course.  What amazes me the most is none of us every actually get away with anything, and yet we can continue thinking we may be the first.  But the Word of God has told us clearly, the eyes of God our on each and every one of us.

The eyes of the LORD are in every place, Keeping watch on the evil and the good. Proverbs 15:3 (NKJV)

Proverbs has given us clear instruction, great wisdom, and amazing promises with regard to our choosing to obey, or disobey our Heavenly Father.

A fool despises his father's instruction, But he who receives correction is prudent.  In the house of the righteous there is much treasure, But in the revenue of the wicked is trouble. Harsh discipline is for him who forsakes the way, And he who hates correction will die. The LORD is far from the wicked; But He hears the prayer of the righteous.  He who disdains instruction despises his own soul, But he who heeds rebuke gets understanding. Proverbs 15:5-6,10,29,32 (NKJV)

So, we can clearly see by the Word of God, we are given every chance to do what is right and is pleasing to our Heavenly Father.  Through His Word and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we have been shown the proper path to follow.  We can either choose to have an abiding relationship (See John 15) by obeying Him, or we can freely choose to follow the desires of our flesh.  Each and every one of us faces this temptation each and every day.  

We can see the Apostle Paul wrestling with this very subject as recorded in the Book of Romans.  One might think Paul to be immune from such temptations or failures - But this was not the case.  Even though Paul physically wrote roughly 40% of the New Testament, it was the Holy Spirit who actually inspired every jot and tittle of writing.  We can see clearly in Romans chapter 7, how Paul struggled with this battle of his flesh and Spirit.

For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good.  But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find.  For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. Romans 7:15-19 (NKJV)

Even though Paul dealt with temptations, we can clearly see the Holy Spirit's regenerative work in his life.  In verse 15, Paul states, "But what I hate, that I do..." The key to this verse is Paul, "Hated" the sinful things he did.  This is important to each of us as true Born Again believers in Jesus Christ - we should hate sin.

You who love the LORD, hate evil! Psalms 97:10 (NKJV)

And we are told in Proverbs 8:13, "The fear of the LORD is to "Hate" evil."   And in Romans 12:9 we are told to "Abhor" what is evil.  Every person who has been regenerated will truly hate the sin they have committed, as the Holy Spirit convicts them to repent, and to confess it unto the Lord.  The Body might like it, but the Spirit hates it.  

Q:    So how can we know we will be able to win this fight between the Spirit and the flesh?

A:    By believing the promises given to us within Word of God, and applying God's teachings to our life.  

In Part 3, we will take a closer look at some very important promises from God regarding our fight with sinful temptation to be hearers only of the Word, and to not be doers of it.

STUDY QUESTION: According to 2Tim 3:1, 13, in the last days, what will men become worse at?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Do you find yourself hating the sinful things you do, or have you done it for so long, it doesn't bother you anymore?

APPLICATION: If you find yourself hating something you are doing, cry out to God and ask for His hand to heal you from this stronghold.  Believe in God's ability to cleanse it from Your life, and you will be free.  Trust God's healing power, and His will to heal you.

Father, Thank You for Your Holy Spirit who lives within my body.  Thank You for helping me to hate those things You find to be an abomination.  Help me today to continue to lay these things down and repent of them.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000