We have been looking at what we as believers can come into agreement with. There are those who are willing to accept a mere image of God that would undermine His deity rather than discern how each person of the Godhead, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit manifests themselves. With the Godhead there are no images that can properly represent any of the three persons of the Godhead.
The Father’s loving care can be represented by a mother hen who guards and protects her chicks but He would never appear as a hen. Jesus who is the revelation of the Father is not a mere image of the Father, but a living divine person who manifest Himself in human form. The Holy Spirit is represented by those things that bring out His character and work, whether it is the gentle dove, the refreshing waters of life, or the very breath and air of God, but to present Him in human form would be blasphemous.
Sadly, we are being conditioned to accept the counterfeits of these three persons by various cults and the entertainment industry. I have mentioned the book, The Shack and the series The Chosen as good examples of misrepresentations of the different persons of the Godhead when it comes to literary works or the media. Granted, according to the claims of the author of The Shack, he did not intend it to be a theological book; rather, it was a fiction book that he wrote for himself due to confusion brought on by a hurtful past. He claimed it was other parties who ran with it and all of a sudden, he found himself in some current that could not be stopped. However, there is a book written by a former friend of the author of The Shack called “Burning Down the Shack” which debunks all of his claims as to his intentions and whether he found himself in some uncontrollable current. Only the Lord knows the complete truth, but the fact that the author of The Shack taught on TBN may add some insight into this matter.
Scripturally, it is clear that to even misrepresent God in any preaching or writing is using His name in vain, which breaks the third commandment. To use His name in vain is a form of slandering His character, proving to be dangerous to souls and blasphemous to God. Such erroneous avenues make it possible for Satan to use them to promote his lie and agenda in order to lead people away from the true God and to worship and serve him instead, and as the Bible clearly states, we will be held accountable for every word we declare verbally or that is written. This judgment becomes even more sobering when we realize we will be held accountable with greater damnation when we cause the vulnerable and the weak to stumble because of wrong misrepresentation, causing them to walk away from true faith or fall into a ditch of destruction (Exodus 20:3-5; Matthew 12:35-37; 15:14; 23:15, 28-33; Romans 14:12-13).
Another problem with any unscriptural presentation about God is that the father of lies, and accuser of the brethren, Satan, will use it to cause division among the brethren. Truth will often bring separation between the holy and unholy, but false presentations will bring the fruit of division among believers. There will always be those who will stand against any heretical presentation, and they will inevitably find themselves at odds with those who are willing to show tolerance because they know the difference, or with those who had some spiritual connection that in their carnal mind confirms the lie to be a truth (Matthew 10:32-36; Matthew 12:25; John 8:44; 1 Corinthians 3:3; Hebrews 4:13). There are also those who are weak in faith that become confused about what is true when such debate takes center stage, and in some cases, these misrepresentations can serve as a hook in the nose of those who are struggling with their faith, leading them down a subtle, deviant path, while causing those who are disillusioned with their faith to go astray. It is a lot like what Jesus said about Judas after he betrayed Him. It was true that the betrayal was prophesied and someone would end up betraying Him, but Jesus made this statement in Luke 22:22, “And truly the Son of man goeth, as determined: but woe unto that man by whom he is betrayed!”
Whether in this life or the next, such false presentations of God will be used to judge those individuals, regardless of their past, because they do have the Word with all of its warnings and exhortations about taking such godless liberties. In the midst of these warnings, they also have the promises of healing and restoration if they will but turn to the Lord and seek Him with all of their heart (Jeremiah 29:13).
When it comes to The Chosen, there is a wrong mixture of spirit and doctrine. One must discern spirit and compare Scripture with Scripture to identify wrong doctrine (Acts 17:10-11; 1 Corinthians 2:11-14; 1 John 4:1). The wrong spirit is hard to discern unless you are recognizing the subtle presentations of the Godhead within the confines of wrong doctrine. There is the mixture of an anti-Christ spirit (Mormonism) and the subtle references to another Jesus, along with a few Catholic beliefs that are cleverly being interwoven into this series.
This brings us to an important warning found in2 Corinthians 11:2-4, “For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” Notice how Paul mentions three issues in light of his concern that we can easily be beguiled by the best.
How many Christians really believe they can’t be deceived? To believe you can’t be deceived is an attitude which reveals a person has already been deceived, or is being set up by his or her arrogance to fall into (or be taken captive) by delusion. We forget that in our fallen condition we are bent towards deception and susceptible to it, and can easily fall into it because we have such a high opinion of what we think we know, and trust our way of doing things. We are warned about the carnal mind that is enmity against God in Romans 8:5-8; our ways being that of death in Proverbs 14:12; of being set up for a fall in 1 Corinthians 10:12 because of pride; and against having a high opinion of self in Romans 12:3, but how many believe that they are in such bad shape (or all that bad) that they can’t be taken away by a current of delusion?
I don’t know about you, but the depths I have discovered about my fallen condition are humbling and cause an awareness of my vulnerability. I know it is only by grace that the Lord will keep my feet from slipping into a bog of deception, or from falling off a high cliff of self-righteous arrogance, and He preserves me in a world wrapped up with one lie after another (Psalm 17:5; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Jude 1).
The Apostle Paul tells the believers at Corinth, that he was jealous over their spiritual well-being with a godly jealousy for they were espoused to one husband. Remember, one of God’s names is “Jealous” and He will not be in competition with, or play second fiddle to any made-up idol (Exodus 34:14). It was the apostle’s desire that as a body of believers they would be presented as a chaste virgin to Christ. When you consider the city of Corinth, it held the same financial and cultural traps that America has had for years.
Paul’s concern was that even the believers at Corinth would be beguiled by Satan, just as Eve was, in an environment where the desires of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the ways of pride were cleverly magnified in order to take a person captive by one, or all three, of the world’s avenues that have subtly been devised by the enemy of our souls to entice, entrap, and enslave people. 1 John 2:15-17 talks about these three avenues and that they are not of the Father, but whosoever does the will of God will abide forever.
We must not be ignorant of Satan’s devices, but the fact that so many are not aware of how effective he is in deceiving, seducing and beguiling us demonstrates how successful he is (2 Corinthians 2:11). The part about beguiling is an important bit of information. Many believe that Eve was lying when she stated she had been beguiled by Satan in the garden of Eden in Genesis 3:13, but Paul makes it clear in 2 Corinthians 11, as well as in 1 Timothy 2:14, that because Eve was deceived, she was found in transgression, while Adam was not deceived. It is clear in Genesis 3:6 that Adam was with Eve in her time of temptation and had witnessed how the serpent cleverly beguiled her; however, Adam, who had dominion at that time over creation, never stepped in to set the record straight, nor did he rebuke Satan and lead Eve away; rather he chose to openly rebel (Genesis 1:26; Job 31:33).
The examples of Eve and Adam shows us that man either falls into sin or he openly walks into sin because of personal agendas. Eve in her honesty has been called a liar because man refuses to believe that one can be that vulnerable, while Adam in his dishonesty seems to be given a pass because there are always reasons for why man’s rebellion is understandable and excusable since the fault always lies elsewhere in spite of the fact that it is man’s choice in the end to believe what he wants to believe and do what he wants to do.
When you look up the word “beguiled” it is even a stronger delusion than the one created by seduction. Seduction seduces one into another reality. In seduction, one senses mentally that there is something off, but in the presence of the seducer, they are drawn into a false reality; but when a person is beguiled, they are totally, and completely seduced. This means that mentally they have no sense about them that there is something amiss, and morally they will naturally go against the grain of what is true because it seems so right.
This brings us to how, when one is beguiled, their mind becomes corrupted against what is true. Sadly, this is when the simplicity of what Christ did for us is corrupted. When it comes to being beguiled, simplicity is lost, while intellectually one becomes enlightened by a false light that seems to be more real than truth, and become so corrupted in their thinking that they will sacrifice all that is right to experience the false promise that is behind it.
Today such complete beguilement is accomplished through indoctrination, but Satan can powerfully beguile people to believe and pursue a lie to their own destruction. Keep in mind, all Satan has to do is corrupt our understanding of Jesus and the Gospel in order to bring us under the wicked covering of the spirit of this world.
The question remains, can we be in agreement where any such corruption is taking place?