But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, (1 Timothy 4:1-2)
The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Teachings that come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron (1 Tim 4:1-2). As ministers of the gospel, we are commanded to point these things out to the brothers and sisters, as good ministers of Christ Jesus (1 Tim. 4:6).
Do not judge by appearance [superficially and arrogantly], but judge fairly and righteously.
“Do not judge by appearance [superficially and arrogantly], but judge fairly and righteously“John 7:24
In Part 1 Beware of the Spirit of Deception, I encouraged the Body of Christ to be on the alert for the spirit of deception. At that time I sensed the Holy Spirit sending the Church a warning. Since the beginning of the early church, Satan has actively opposed the truth of God’s Word, especially with regard to the gospel message. Scripture warns us, “Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. So resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brothers and sisters who are in the world (1 Peter 5:8-9).
Satan will use any means necessary to thwart the redemptive plans of God. The god of this world’s intent is to blind the minds of the unbeliever (2 Cor. 4:4). We do not have to be outwitted by the schemes of the devil who roars around like a lion looking for someone to devour (2 Cor. 2:11; 1 Pet. 5:8).
The antichrist is spirit that masquerades as an angel of light whose sole purpose is to deceive the whole world (2 Cor. 11:14; Rev. 12:8) as an angel of light. We are living in a time in which we must be sure of what we believe. Jesus spoke strongly in the Book of Matthew and Mark about the coming deception when “false messiahs and false prophets will appear performing signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the very elect will be deceived (Matt.24:24; Mark 13:22).
Holy Spirit has been emphasizing this to me more and more in the past few months. A major theme throughout the entire New Testament, including John’s epistles, is that God’s people need to develop discernment so that they can avoid being deceived.
Truth is so obscure in these times, and falsehood so established, that, unless we love the truth, we cannot know it. In the Future War of the Church, author Chuck Pierce states “…we can expect religious deception to become increasingly more common and more intense.” The spirit of religion has already begun an offensive to deceive multitudes and to divert them from true faith in the only head of the Church, Jesus Christ. We cannot afford to be ignorant of his devices, so that we might not be outwitted by him. We don’t want to be naïve and then fall prey to his schemes (2 Cor. 2:11).
2 Thessalonians 2:3 admonishes us not to be deceived by anyone. Satan delights in destruction and would love nothing more than to destroy the church. We can expect religious deception to become increasingly more common and more intense as time progresses. We must be alert and discern how deception is being sown in our midst. Deception of mankind will not simply occur at some future date in time. I believe that many evangelical Christians are being deceived by conspiracy theories about a stolen election, …. and mandates that are proposedly deny their freedoms.
Satan has been about the work of misleading mankind since the dawn of history: He did not need an elaborate plan to plunge mankind into darkness, one little white lie changed everanything.
“Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil” (Gen. 3:1-5)
The apostle John wrote: “Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour” (1 John 2:18, NASB). This verse indicates there is a spirit of antichrist that has been working in the world from the beginning, manifesting in various eras. Throughout the Book of Revelation, we see that this Antichrist figure works in tandem with the devil and the false prophet to wage war on God and His people. The Antichrist is part of a demonic trinity—a counterfeit of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
The devil is working overtime because he’s furious that his days are numbered. He is mustering all his forces because he knows heaven is about to unleash a great outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Daniel wrote of the Antichrist who in the last days will attempt “to change times and law” (Dan. 7:25). Satan tries to redefine law and pull us out of God’s timing.
We shouldn’t focus our attention on the devil, but the Bible says clearly that we should not be ignorant of his crafty schemes (see 2 Cor. 2:11).
Author, J. Lee Grady exposes “6 Ways to Identify the Antichrist Spirit”
- The Antichrist spirit hates God.
- The antichrist spirit hates life.
- The antichrist spirit hates the family.
- The antichrist spirit hates authority.
- The antichrist spirit hates the Word of God.
- The antichrist spirit hates the church.
I’m not sharing these things to encourage fear. I’m sharing this because the truth can only be found in Jesus Christ In the end the beast and the false prophet will be thrown “into the lake of fire which burns with brimstone” (Rev. 19:20c), and the devil will follow them—”and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Rev. 20:10b). Jesus will rule forever as King of all kings. But we have some praying and preaching to do now. We can’t sit back and let the spirit of antichrist gain ground. The church must get serious about pushing back the darkness.
May the Lord’s blessing be with you. May He lay a firm foundation of the testimony of Jesus in your life!
Minister A. Francine Green
Note: All Scriptures are taken from the New International Version (NASB) unless otherwise noted.
- Pierce, Chuck, D & Wagner Sytsema, Rebecca, (2001, 2007). Future War of the Church Chosen Books
- Grady, J. L., “6 Ways to Identify the Antichrist Spirit”, Charisma Magazine, July 2020