Religious deceit has always been a favourite weapon of Satan, and what better way to seduce souls than by the false prophets who run about acting as agents of heaven, when they are, in fact, agents of hell.
Satan employs these “double agents” for one single purpose: the destruction of souls. Always subtle, crafty, and evasive, he has discovered a shady art by which to bring about man’s ruin, yet all the while remaining quite obscure and concealed: Deceitful transformation! By this practice, Satan himself poses as an angel of light, “therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness” (2 Cor. 11:15).
Someone has rightly said, that “if we want to find the devil in America we must begin by looking behind the pulpits of America,” for it is there “that the devil does his most deceptive work.” The warning given by Jesus to “beware of false prophets” is more timely now than it has ever been before. There are a great number of them, and they are deceiving multitudes. The time has come to expose them.
The story is told that, toward the end of World War II, some German soldiers deceitfully transformed themselves into American soldiers. Clothed in American uniforms and speaking an accent-free English, they successfully penetrated American ranks. They were not found out until the day that one of their vehicles ran out of fuel. It was then that they made the terrible mistake of asking the true American soldiers for “petrol,” a term not used in America in this respect. Their speech had betrayed them, and the deceivers were discovered!
Likewise, the deceitful transformations of false prophets are made evident by the way they “corrupt the Word of God,” sugarcoating the “seemingly unpalatable” doctrines, softening the offence of the cross, labeling sin merely as a weakness, encouraging “the proud, the trifler, the lover of the world, the man of pleasure… to imagine he is in the way to heaven” (John Wesley), sharing little “thoughts” and big jokes, and, in general, preaching another Jesus and another gospel. Such deceitful handling of the Word pleases carnal minds and makes the money roll in.
In truth, these hypocrites cannot “declare the whole counsel of God” for they do not conform to it (B. R. Jones). They cannot proclaim a life-changing gospel, for their own lives have not been changed; they cannot “gather out things that offend,” for they offend often. But what they are very capable of and ever ready to do is to change costumes to suit just about any occasion. They will don a conservative mode today, a liberal style tomorrow, an intellectual manner here, and an emotional approach there: in short, these traitors will “wear” whatever fashions are necessary, including literal changes of garments from three-piece suits to golfing shorts to baseball caps to cowboy boots, all for the purpose of satifying their craving for worldly gain, fame, and popularity (Finney). With swelling spiritual jargon, they gather and flatter the crowds, conveniently winking at the sins of others to make allowance for their own. How this practice has riddled the camp with outward and inward iniquity–television, movies, sensual fashions, jewelry, cut hair and slacks for women, divorce and remarriage, strife, hatred, jealousy, and all else that the blind watchmen have allowed in! “Deceitful workers” the Bible calls them, who care not for the needs of never-dying souls!
Though they are called ministers of righteousness, it is nothing but a name and a religious facade. What a spiritual epidemic they have caused by the spreading of their false doctrines! How accurate was the answer given by a little child when asked what false doctrine was: “When a doctor gives sick people the wrong stuff!”
Oh, that they would stop running all over the land, stop “transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ,” stop deceiving the multitudes, stop administering the “wrong stuff,” as they speak out of “their own heart and not out of the mouth of the Lord”!
It is time that their folly be exposed before all men (2 Tim. 3:9), so that precious souls may be liberated from their clutches.
If these “ravening wolves” in “sheep’s clothing” would but heed the message of the midnight cry, wake up to their lost condition, acknowledge themselves reprobates, and submit to God’s true angel ministry described in Revelation 10, they could yet find grace unto repentance and experience a glorious transformation in their souls before the day of revenge breaks in. May God grant it.