10 min 1 week

10.4 Spiritualism in the Last Days: Part 1
The Seductive Power of Supernatural Deceptions
Read Matthew 24:5, 11, 24; 2 Thessalonians 2:7–9; and Revelation 13:13–14; 16:13–14. What kinds of deceptions will people experience in the end times?
The Bible passages you mentioned describe various types of deceptions that people will experience in the end times:
Matthew 24:5, 11, 24
  • Matthew 24:5: “For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many.”
  • Matthew 24:11: “And many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.”
  • Matthew 24:24: “For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.”
In these verses, Jesus warns about false messiahs and false prophets who will perform impressive signs and wonders, deceiving many people. These deceptions will be so convincing that even the elect could be in danger of being deceived.
2 Thessalonians 2:7-9
  • 2 Thessalonians 2:7-9: “For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the splendor of his coming. The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie.”
This passage describes the revelation of the “lawless one,” who will operate through the power of Satan, performing all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs, and wonders to deceive people.
Revelation 13:13-14
  • Revelation 13:13-14: “And it performed great signs, even causing fire to come down from heaven to the earth in full view of the people. Because of the signs it was given power to perform on behalf of the first beast, it deceived the inhabitants of the earth. It ordered them to set up an image in honor of the beast who was wounded by the sword and yet lived.”
This describes how the beast will perform great signs and wonders, including bringing fire down from heaven, to deceive the inhabitants of the earth and lead them to worship the image of the beast.
Revelation 16:13-14
  • Revelation 16:13-14: “Then I saw three impure spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet. They are demonic spirits that perform signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty.”
These verses describe three impure spirits like frogs coming out of the mouths of the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet. These are demonic spirits performing signs to deceive the kings of the earth and gather them for battle on the great day of God.
Summary of Deceptions:
  • False Messiahs and Prophets: People will come in Jesus’ name, claiming to be the Messiah, accompanied by false prophets who will deceive many.
  • Deceptive Signs and Wonders: The lawless one and demonic powers will perform impressive and deceptive miracles to mislead people.
  • Spiritualistic Nature of Deceptions: Demons will use supernatural manifestations and signs to appeal to people’s emotions and irrational sides rather than their rational abilities.
Ángel Rodríguez describes the power of these demonic deceptions as highly convincing because they are based on supernatural phenomena that appeal to emotions and include spiritualistic elements. These deceptions are supported by the unbiblical doctrine of the immortality of the soul and are meant to mislead humanity and draw them away from God.
Why is it dangerous to trust our feelings? What role do they play—both positively and negatively—in our faith experience? How might Satan bypass our thinking processes and appeal to our emotions?
It is dangerous to trust our feelings because they are easily deceived and changeable. Feelings can be strongly influenced by external factors, personal experiences, or internal moods, making them an unreliable foundation for our decisions or faith convictions. Here are some points that illustrate this:
Dangers of Trusting Feelings:
  1. Influenceability: Feelings can be easily manipulated by external circumstances or deceit. Those who rely solely on their feelings are more susceptible to being deceived by false teachings or charismatic personalities.
  2. Subjectivity: Feelings are subjective and can vary greatly from person to person. What feels right to one person might feel entirely wrong to another, leading to confusion and uncertainty.
  3. Instability: Feelings can change quickly and are often temporary. Decisions based solely on feelings can be regretted later when emotional states change.
Role of Feelings in Faith Experience:
  • Positively:
    • Motivation and Commitment: Positive feelings like love, joy, and gratitude can strengthen our commitment and dedication to faith.
    • Experience and Expression of Faith: Feelings allow us to deeply and authentically experience and express our faith, such as through worship and fellowship.
  • Negatively:
    • Deception and Delusion: Negative or misguided feelings can lead to deception and delusion, especially if manipulated by charismatic but misleading people or teachings.
    • Doubt and Despair: Feelings like fear, doubt, and despair can weaken our faith and lead us away from God if left unchecked.
Satan’s Use of Feelings for Deception: Satan can bypass our thinking processes and directly appeal to our feelings by:
  • Emotional Manipulation: Using events or people that provoke strong emotional reactions, Satan can cloud our judgment and lead us to rash decisions.
  • False Security: Satan can create a false sense of security or peace to distract us from true security in Christ. This can occur through seemingly spiritual experiences that are not based on biblical truth.
  • Illusion of Truth: Through seemingly miraculous events or spiritualistic phenomena, Satan can evoke feelings of awe or reverence that lead us to believe false teachings.
Conclusion: Our only safety lies in Jesus and His Word. The Bible provides a solid and unchanging foundation on which to build our faith and decisions. It is important to examine our feelings and view them in light of Scripture to ensure they do not mislead us.
What common deceptions are those who know that the dead are asleep protected from even today?
Those who know that the dead are asleep are protected from several common deceptions that rely on the belief in an immediate existence of the soul after death. Here are some of the most common deceptions they are protected from:
  1. Spiritualism and Occultism: They are less susceptible to spiritualistic practices or occult rituals that claim to communicate with the spirits of the dead. They recognize such practices as contrary to biblical teaching and potentially dangerous.
  2. False Teachings about Heaven and Hell: They are less likely to be misled by teachings that claim the dead immediately go to heaven or hell after death. They understand that death is a state of sleep until the resurrection on the last day.
  3. Misleading Spiritual Experiences: They are less likely to be deceived by misleading spiritual experiences that claim to provide direct encounters with the souls of the dead. They recognize such experiences as deceptions from Satan and remain grounded in the Word of God.
  4. Misguided Comfort: They are less likely to rely on the supposed comfort of believing that the souls of the dead continue to live and interact with the living. Instead, they find comfort in the hope of the resurrection and eternal life in Christ.
  5. Confusing Theological Concepts: They are less likely to be confused by theological concepts based on the assumption of an immortal soul, which can lead to an unclear understanding of death and the afterlife. They adhere to the clear biblical teaching about death as sleep and the resurrection on the last day.
By accepting the understanding of death as sleep, they are better protected from the deceptions Satan can spread regarding life after death. Instead, they remain firmly rooted in their hope in the return of Christ and the resurrection of the dead.

These deceptions have a direct connection to our daily lives and faith. Here are some aspects that illustrate this:
  1. Preservation of Truth: In everyday life, we are constantly exposed to information and influences that can distract us from the truth. Belief in biblical teaching and knowledge of possible deceptions help us remain vigilant and critical of information and influences that could lead us away from God.
  2. Decision Making: Our decisions should be based on biblical truth rather than feelings or deceptive appearances. By relying on the Bible, we can make informed and wise decisions that align with God’s will.
  3. Spiritual Discipline: Awareness of the deceptions that will occur in the end times reminds us to maintain our spiritual discipline. Regular prayer, Bible study, and fellowship with other believers strengthen our faith and help us remain steadfast.

In a world full of deceptions, it is dangerous to trust our feelings. Our only safety lies in being firmly rooted in Jesus and His Word.

Visited 21 times, 1 visit(s) today