By Roy Burner (Minister of the Gospel)
Powerful influence to deceive exists today as the serpent in the Garden of Eden enticed Eve to partake of the forbidden fruit. The serpent made the fruit of the tree appetizing, pleasant to the eyes, and to be desired of, despite God's command to not partake of it.
Scripture reveals: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die (Genesis 3:3).
A Bible commentary noted: Eve toned down the penalty and certainty of death for eating with the term lest you die. Lest expresses a fear of possibly dying when God had already expressed the certainty of it in saying: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it: for in the day that you eat thereof you shall surely die (Genesis 2:17).
There are those who stand for the truths of God's Word; who desire to see a return of the godly nature which previously existed. There is also an onrush of evilness captivating the land as well, that makes such a stance look like little David facing the giant Goliath.
There are those who bear the fruit of corruptness; and unless identified, will continue be a powerful influence to deceive. The Apostle Paul identified a fellow worker, which had forsaken the right way, in saying: For Demas has forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia (2 Timothy 4:10).
Many today; who once stood for the truths of God's Word, are being deceived through lack of exposure of the truth. There is a dereliction of duty in promulgated that truth. There is an abandonment, desertion, or forsaking of a given responsibility to do so.
There is a war being waged between the forces of good and evil. There are ungodly traits being put forth that are readily consumed. A powerful influence to deceive is in the offering; due to a lack of godly leadership.
We are seeing ungodly influences manifested that far exceed Sodom and Gomorrah which God destroyed. Scripture reveals: And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes condemned them with an overthrow (or to destruction), making them an example to those who after (or afterward) should live ungodly (2 Peter 2:6). We now seeing a renewal of the ungodly characteristics of Sodom and Gomorrah that far exceed its former traits.
Scripture reveals: And delivered just Lot, vexed (or oppressed) with the filthy conversation (or conduct) of the wicked: for that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed (or tormented) his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds (2 Peter 2:7-8). Lot was so intrigued with some aspect of Sodom that he lingered when destruction was forthcoming. What influence would hold one captive at such a time?
There is an influence to mislead in the political arena; with difficulty in knowing who is telling the truth! The mainstream and social media is bias in their reporting. There is a movement to downplay the righteousness of man to establish ungodliness in its place; with laws and judicial rulings made to accommodate the latter.
There is division and mistrust with a lack of coming together for the good of the country. There is an inroad towards self-destruct; if such a path is not pursued with a Nineveh type repentance in the offering.
Scripture reveals: The people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth (a sign of repentance), from the greatest of them even to the least of them (Jonah 3:5). And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented (or relented) of the evil, that he had said that he would do to them; and he did it not (Jonah 3:10).
A Bible commentary noted: God did not change in His ultimate intention toward the Ninevites: rather, they changed in their attitude toward Him. On the basis of that change, God could deal with them in grace, rather than in judgment as their failure to repent would have necessitated.
There is a powerful influence to deceive in the sanctity of life. A Sunday school commentary noted: The loss of regard for the sacredness of human life is a dangerous path to travel. Many today embrace the "culture of death" for convenience; abortion on demand, euthanasia, etc. When human life is not treated as a sacred gift from God; life itself ceases to have any meaning or purpose.
Many nations have attempted to destroy life; if it does not suit their purpose for its continuation. They sugarcoat it with superficial reasons that are as wells without water; which are but empty words towards a powerful influence to deceive and gain acceptance.
Powerful influence to deceive will always be in the world; as long as ungodly influences remain. There is ungodliness that has captured the attention of many; with little effort to rid oneself from its clutches.
Scripture reveals: Know you not, that to whom you yield (or present) yourselves servants to obey, his servants (or slaves) you are to whom you obey; whether of sin to death, or of obedience to righteousness (Romans 6:16)? We live in a world that dictates the moral habits of others; with one's behavior being the direct result of such influence.
There are many ungodly issues being promoted with consumption taking place. There is a powerful influence to deceive in that many cannot speak out concerning certain issues because they themselves are partaking of the same!
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