Be Not Seduced
Beware of anything that takes you back to something from which God has delivered you.
Alright, thank you very much, and hello again, radio friends, how in the world are you? Doing all right? Well, this is your good friend, Dr. Cook, and I’m glad to be back with you. I am so grateful for the privilege of sharing God’s Word with you day by day. It does a lot for me, and somehow if the blessed Holy Spirit of God can bring through these words that are carried through the miracle of radio, bring through these words some blessing into your life, then my prayers will indeed have been answered. I pray every day before I face these microphones that God’s love, and His Truth, and His power, and His encouragement, and His joy and peace might be in what I say, even in the very tone of my voice.
Well, we’re looking at 1 Timothy 4. Something that God considers very important. “The spirits speaketh expressly.” He says, “In the latter times,” now we’re in them. Israel is back in the land, the prophecies having to do with Russia and all of her allies, and the reformulation of the ancient Roman Empire and the increase of knowledge and the perplexity having to do with the world economy, and wars and rumors of wars and earthquakes and the increase of frontal, overt, shameless wickedness, and the falling away of people who lose their faith, all of these things are happening. So we can say, “Yes, we’re in the end time.” Now, what’s going to characterize that end time? “In the latter times,” he said, “Some shall depart from the faith.”
We talked about that the last time we got together. Apostasy: To place oneself apart from the central truths of the faith. Watch out for the add-ons, watch out for the extras, watch out for the fancy twists where people say, “Yes, what you have is all right, but you need this as well.” Watch out for that.
Now, he says, “Giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of demons.” I think you have to realize that you’re in a battle with spiritual forces. If you haven’t realized that yet, think about it now. Make up your mind that the Christian life is not a profession, nor indeed a point of view. It’s not a tag that you wear to identify you. The Christian life is a spiritual battle. Paul said, “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Take the sword of the Spirit and the helmet of salvation and so on.
You’re in a battle. Satan has vowed to get you. Satan has never left his initial purpose to dethrone God and to be supreme in the universe. And the devil hates you, his demons hate you. Hatred, may I say, is one of the marks of godlessness and of satanic energy. You find anybody that is serving Satan and you will find a depth of vindictiveness and hatred that is absolutely awesome. The closer a person comes to serving Satan and his demons, the more he or she is filled with hatred and vindictiveness and spite and malice. The essence of evil is condensed, so to speak, and poured in to a life that is under the control of demonic powers.
Now, I’ve seen this happen personally- you may not have, and so you may not believe what I’m saying to you, but I think you can take it as true, because missionaries will tell you this and people who’ve traveled in other countries will tell you this. And those who study the various segments of society, even in our own country, will tell you that those who are allied with evil forces end up filled with hatred.
Well, of course, that’s what Paul says in Titus. He said, “We, ourselves, were also sometimes deceived, serving different lustrous desires and pleasures.” Serving desires, you see? A slave to your desires. “Hate filled and hating one another,” he says in Titus 3. “That is the essence of the unsaved life.”
There are no truly happy unsaved people and the older they get, the more unhappy they are. You don’t find happy old people who are truly at peace and happy unless there is faith in God, somewhere along the line. Now, what about it? He said, “Some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits.” You’re in a battle, you’re in a spiritual battle, Satan has vowed to get you. “Be sober, be vigilant,” says Simon Peter, “For your adversary, the devil, is a roaring lion walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”
We read in The New Testament of Satan’s devices, and Satan’s snares, and Satan’s attacks, and Satan’s accusations. He’s the accuser of the brethren, which accuses them day and night. You’re in a battle. Now then, what?
Well, learn how your enemy works and then learn how to defeat him. The way to fight a war is to find out about your enemy; where he is, how he works, and how to defeat him. I looked up some of the verses that have to do with this concept of being seduced. The Greek word that’s used for seducing here simply means “leading astray.” Leading astray. Spirits that lead you astray.
A friend of mine was called up one day by someone who was, in effect, a seducer. And there was the request that they get together and my friend said, “No, I don’t want to see you because I don’t want to be led astray.” Very good answer. And that is precisely the essence of what the Bible means when it uses the word “seduce,” it means to lead you astray. Not to destroy you with one fell swoop, one great blow, not to engage you in some traumatic experience that is going to scare you to death, just lead you astray.
Let’s take this little detour, let’s get interested in this little extra here and there. So I say again, beware of the extras, stick to eternal truth. What are some of the marks of this matter of seducing spirits? 2 Kings 21:9 speaks of Manasseh, the king who brought back the old idolatrous practices. Now, see, the temple had been cleansed from the idols that were in it before, and the so-called high places, which were really locations for terrible immorality, under the name of religion. They had been destroyed, as well as what the Bible calls “groves,” which I think were also areas of idolatrous worship, which was connected with a great deal of immorality.
And these had been taken away before. But now comes Manasseh, he reigned 55 years. And it said he did evil in the sight of the Lord and he brought all these things back. He brought the idols back, he brought the worship of Baal, which was a terribly vile religion, he brought that back. He brought images right into the holy place in the temple, defiling the temple of Jehovah with these images and these idols. He brought back the high places and the groves. He made his own son pass through the fire in a ritual that was specifically idolatrous. Did all these things.
Now, how is he considered to be a seducer? The Bible calls him that in 2 Kings 21:9. Why is he considered to be a seducer? Simply because he led people in going back to something from which the Lord had delivered them. Beware of anything that takes you back to something from which God has delivered you, either to consider it in friendly fashion or to engage in it once again. See, Manasseh was 12 years old, he followed Hezekiah, who was a godly king, and Manasseh reigned 55 years, he did that which was evil. He built again the high places which Hezekiah’s father had destroyed.
He reared up altars for Baal, as Ahab, King of Israel. He worshiped all the hosts of heaven and served them, he built altars in the house of the Lord. And he built altars for all the hosts of heaven in the two courts of the house of the Lord, he made his son pass through the fire. He used enchantments and dealt with familiar spirits and wizards, wrought much wickedness and set a graven image of the grove he had made in the house of which the Lord said to David, “In this house I put my name forever.”
So, Manasseh seduced them to do more evil than did the nations whom the Lord destroyed before the children of Israel. Seduced. How did he seduce them? By bringing back things that God had said, “Take it away.”
Now, maybe you don’t need this, maybe you’re a little bored that I stop here. You say, “Come on, Brother Cook, get going.” But maybe somebody needs this. Am I talking today with somebody who is on the verge of fooling again with something from which God has delivered you? Maybe the Lord delivered you from alcohol, or from tobacco, or from drugs, or from sex sins, or from gambling or whatever, I don’t know. And now and again it comes back to you and you say, “Well, wouldn’t it be nice just to have a little of that again, just a little drink, just a little joint of marijuana, just a little of this or that.”
If I’m talking with somebody that’s being tempted that way, let me warn you- don’t touch it! Don’t go back to it, that’s the way of seduction. That’s the way to go back into heartbreak, and loss, and defeat. Seduction oftentimes starts with just sampling a little of what God has delivered you from before. God says, “I’ll forgive you, but let them not turn again to foolishness.” That’s the way God puts it. Don’t go back, keep on with our Lord. Turn to Him even today and say, “Lord, I want to go on with you. I don’t want to touch the things from which you’ve delivered me before.” Good idea? Seduction.
Then, of course, false prophets, Ezekiel 13:10, “False prophets who say, ‘Peace, peace’ when there is not peace,” and who build a building with what’s called “untempered mortar.” Seduction, oftentimes, comes about through self-deception and substitutes for the real thing.
Untempered mortar- that means mortar, cement without any binder in it. You just put sand and water together without any cement, it isn’t going to hold. Untempered mortar, that’s what they were talking about. To live a life that doesn’t have in it the binding principles of the eternal Word of God and which kids yourself into saying things are going to be alright- because I think they’re going to be alright, they will be. I think it, therefore it will be. No, it doesn’t always work that way, beloved. Seduction often starts with self-deception and with shoddy, careless workmanship for the Lord. Well, we’ll get at this the next time we get together.
Dear Father today, keep us close to Thee, keep us living on the basics of thy eternal Truth, in Jesus’ name, amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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