Day 16

Resisting Deceit

from the 1 & 2 Thessalonians reading plan


2 Thessalonians 2:1-12, Daniel 11:36-37, Ephesians 5:6-14

BY Erin Davis

In the Davis home, family meetings are reserved for serious business. If someone calls for one, everyone’s internal radar begins to beep, “Pay attention! This is important!” We sit on the edge of our seats as we gather in the living room to hear whatever weighty news is coming. In 2 Thessalonians 2, the apostle Paul calls a family meeting of sorts. The tone is familial but the topic is kind of scary: even God’s children are vulnerable to deception. 

Can’t you picture the Thessalonians gathering together, family-style to read Paul’s letter? I imagine a few biting their fingernails with worry as they read these words, “Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him: We ask you, brothers and sisters, not to be easily upset or troubled” (2Thessalonians 2:1–2).

My heart is right there with the believers who first read these words from Paul. I know I’ve been upset and troubled by the promise of Christ’s coming, even while longing for Him to come. Sometimes I wonder what is taking so long. What if we miss it? How can we know, really know, that when He comes He will receive us as His own?

Beyond the return of Jesus, I have other worries. I’ve seen my Christian brothers and sisters crash and burn on the runway of wrong theology. I’ve watched church leaders veer from the truth to their own peril. Though I trust my salvation is sealed in Christ, I also know I’m capable of falling for lies and grabbing on to false hopes. We must remember that God knows about our racing pulse and anxious heart (Philippians 4:6). Through His Word, He acknowledges our fears with a paternal warning: “Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way” (2Thessalonians 2:3). 

But isn’t it the very nature of deception that it’s tricky? And who is the “man of lawlessness” (vv.5–12), and how do we steer clear of the “strong delusion” (v.11) Paul writes about in his letter? 

In the Davis home, family meetings are also a space for reassurance. We consider something challenging and vow to tackle it together. We acknowledge that something isn’t working, and we stay in the huddle until we have a new game plan. God’s Word does the same. Deep breath. Let’s have a bit of a family meeting.

How can we know if we’ve been deceived? Look closely at verse 12. The answer was there all along. Those who are deceived do not believe the truth. They’ve turned from God’s Word. It’s that simple. And it’s also that easy to do, to be swayed by deception.

Sisters, huddle up. Here is the game plan for battling deception. Ready? We hold God’s Word high as the source of truth. Then we love the truth. We live the truth. We run away from every deception, by running toward our Bibles—together. 

Post Comments (55)

55 thoughts on "Resisting Deceit"

  1. Laurie Crary says:

    Angela. Yes and yes.

  2. Emily McGrath says:

    Go to God with everything! Pray constantly! Stick to His word. He is truth! And He is Faithful! ❤️

  3. Jessie Chatigny says:

    I fully embrace the word as authority and Christ’s divinity AND I welcome lively, whole-hearted, thoughtful interpretations and discussions of it. Scholars and laypeople and ministers who love Jesus have come to different interpretations for millennia and I believe God honors that. Reading some of these comments, I get a pit in my stomach: I don’t want christian theology and debate to be hung up on one or two issues, but to be centered on making us more holy, closer to Christ in community and within our own selves. Remember that anti-racism has its roots in the freedom of God, and that all real love is God.

  4. India Moss says:

    ❤️

  5. tanya b says:

    I love the truth…sisters let us always run not walk towards the truth!!!

  6. Elizabeth Gibson says:

    Amen!

  7. Kristi L says:

    Hi Mercy and Candi,

    I have not personally attended Charis Bible College or listened to Andrew Wommack’s teaching. However, I just wanted to mention that he (and by extension, Charis) are associated with the Word of Faith movement. If you want to read more about that, here’s a link that explains a bit more:

    https://equipblog.wpengine.com/the-dangers-of-tuning-into-andrew-wommack/

    I know someone who was a student at Charis several years ago and now testifies about how she was deceived by the Word of Faith and New Age teachings of the school. Again, I acknowledge that I haven’t investigated Charis or Andrew Wommack myself, so I could be wrong, but based on the article it seems like he does subscribe to the false teachings of Word of Faith.

    Candi, I’m not sure where you are located, but I can wholeheartedly recommend Grace College in Indiana. I earned my master’s degree in ministry studies from there, but they also offer a number of undergraduate programs as well. Very sound theology and wonderful professors.

  8. Natasha R says:

    Today’s devotional prompted me to reflect on how the evil one is deceiving me today, and I see now that his strategy is to distract me from what really matters. Because of his deceit/distraction, I experience materialism, vanity, and pride, and have the wrong priorities. Though he can distract me sometimes, I know the evil one will ultimately fail because I am a child of the light and I follow the truth. I check in with the truth everyday when I read my bible, pray and meditate. Even when I falter and get distracted, I will stay in the light because I gave my life to God and He will never let go of me.

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