The Veil of Deceit
Deceit (def) – the act of causing someone to accept as true or valid what is false or invalid. I have been a minister of the gospel for over 35 years and I have seen decades of change in the presentation of the gospel in and out of the church. As of late, it seems to be almost impossible to get people to commit to consistent growth in their faith. The desire to walk with God is being replaced with self-centered time consumption that excludes God’s Word and Will at every turn. Barna Research is a Christian think tank that supplies us with statistics and assumptions about why these things are happening, but they never supply any answers to questions of why. Ministers in full time Christian service are dropping like flies, frustrated with the heart condition of the “Christians” they are trying to mobilize. When in reality they are affected by the very thing they are frustrated with and seeing in their congregations. Denominations have drawn such immovable lines of demarcation that they are no longer effective in the world we now live. What is the world we live in now? I believe it is a world that has a veil of deceit over the lost and the saved and our consistent disobedience as believers is fueling a lifestyle of nominalism. This is at a time when we should be pursuing righteousness and life change at a record pace to combat the apathy that we have produced.
Of course, you would think that born again believers would be the first to sound the alarm to expose this ever-increasing veil. But we aren’t doing that. Instead most Christians are going through life with the veil securely attached to their eyes to keep them from waking up and changing. For years we have attributed the resistance to change to an age group, but that is no longer the norm. The resistance to God doing a new thing is now rejected by all ages, from children to senior adults. It seems our over exposure to information has surged all information bad and good into a hyper state and all ages are directly affected by the flood of this information. Let me say something that may shake your world a little bit…. We hear the constant warning about watching pornography, and it is well justified and true. But, what about filling our minds with anything the world shoots our way on a constant basis. Couldn’t that overload of information also cause us to become addicted to listening to it and it could take us down a bad path to unGodliness as much as pornography? I believe it has done just that just like information shared on Facebook is really only electronic gossip, which we Christians should never participate in. Some of you will get your hackles up over that last statement, which only proves my point about the veil being over all of us. Me included. My history in church life as a minister has jaded me to the truth of what is really wrong and caused me to lose my fire from time to time, but God is faithful and convicts me to the point that I can only turn to Him. Paul wrote to the church at Corinth about the veil over the eyes of unbelievers and here is that scripture 2 Corinthians 4:1-4 therefore, since we have this ministry, as we received mercy, we do not lose heart, 2 but we have renounced the things hidden because of shame, not walking in craftiness or adulterating the word of God, but by the manifestation of truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. 3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, 4 in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
In fact, we can readily see that the gospel is veiled to those who are lost and perishing and our lack of passion about sharing it is contributing to the veil being held in place. In fact, if you are able to go about your daily life without thinking about sharing your salvation the veil is strong and in place in your life. Paul had to warn the Christians in Corinth about this problem on a regular basis because they were prone to fall away at the hint of anything new and shiny….just like us. In 1 Corinthians 2:14 Paul gives them and us great hope in getting out of this pit of misery called apathy and it is also a way of lifting the veil from our eyes. 1 Corinthians 2:14 But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised. The natural man is a non spiritual person, or a person of the world or flesh. The natural man is one who doesn’t have the Holy Spirit residing within him. Jesus said in John 3: 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. If you are born again you are born of the Spirit and you receive God’s instruction and act upon it. If you are not born again you are a natural man (woman) and the Spirit of God is not in you. The veil that is over the eyes of the lost has been extended to be over the saved and it causes our faith to lose it’s vibrancy and it also causes a despondency in our life that confuses us in our attempt at Godly living. Paul went on in 1 Corinthians 2:16 to say 16 For who has known the mind of the Lord, that he will instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ. So, if you ever think “I wonder how a Christian could do such a thing!” when looking at things that are going on in this world remember that scripture and it will help you realize the power we have to live the life of a spirit-filled believer. We have the mind of Christ when thinking and reasoning about life decisions and that is incredible.
How do we lift the veil? If your reasoning has become affected by the world around you and you realize there is something wrong with your relationship with Jesus, then it is time to get it right. Full disclosure to Jesus is the best way to get back on track and on the right way of thinking. 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. His grace is real and complete and your earnest desire to repent is well received by our Savior who died for that forgiveness. Then move on to a deeper walk with God and “consecrate” your life to serve Him. Consecrate (def) – dedicated to a sacred purpose.
Make sure this decision is a rededication and not just a redecoration. To dedicate your life afresh and anew is the necessary act of flushing out the old and bringing in the new. We have a term we use for that and it is REVIVAL. Let us learn from Hezekiah, who had drifted from God and then prayed for change with a repentant heart. Here is the truth from God’s word. Isaiah 38:1-8,16 In those days Hezekiah became mortally ill. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him and said to him, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Set your house in order, for you shall die and not live.’” 2 Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord, 3 and said, “Remember now, O Lord, I beseech You, how I have walked before You in truth and with a whole heart, and have done what is good in Your sight.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly. 4 Then the word of the Lord came to Isaiah, saying, 5 “Go and say to Hezekiah, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of your father David, “I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; behold, I will add fifteen years to your life. 6 I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city.”’ 7 “This shall be the sign to you from the Lord, that the Lord will do this thing that He has spoken: 8 Behold, I will cause the shadow on the stairway, which has gone down with the sun on the stairway of Ahaz, to go back ten steps.” So the sun’s shadow went back ten steps on the stairway on which it had gone down. 16 “O Lord, by these things men live, And in all these is the life of my spirit; O restore me to health and let me live! God literally turned back time on that day and added 15 years to Hezekiah’s life, so God can do what is necessary to bring us back to Him if we repent.
May our prayer be “O Lord. Lift this veil from my eyes. Help me see your truth again and bring revival to my soul so I may be a bright and shining light in the midst of a great darkness.” Only Jesus in our lives can lift the veil of deceit that is generated by this world. John 8:12 Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”
Tomorrow’s blog will be a call to action for revival in our land. Be sure and stay tuned for more truth from God’s Word.
The Pilgrimage continues…..