When the Apostle Paul wrote to the Thessalonians, he told them (and us) that before the coming of the lawless one that God would “send a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” 2 Thessalonians 2:-11-12
How else can we explain how so many have abandoned basic Christian teaching and adopted false teaching? Many of our bishops take pleasure in the unrighteous positions of the LGBT advocacy groups. A greater number of parochial clergy openly embrace sins that a generation before would have been thought universally sinful nonsense.
This is not a millenarian rant. This publication will make no prediction about the timing of the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. That said, how else can one explain why so many of our leaders cannot express basic Christian doctrine in a biblically faithful manner — other than we are in a time when God has decided to send a strong delusion to them?
Consider what comes from the mouths of so many in authority. When they say something that is nothing short of heretical with a straight-face you might well ask, “Where in the world did he get that rubbish?” or, “Surely a nine-year old in Sunday School knows better than that.” Is that not evidence that God has kept his promise to send a strong delusion to those happy to believe a lie?
There is an important corollary that goes along with the above understanding.
In 1 Peter 4 the apostle tells Christians scattered around the Roman world that they “are not to be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.” (verse 12). The Church is to expect trials and sufferings. Peter goes on to write something to simultaneously humble us and cause shivers to run up our spines.
“For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? And, if the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner? Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.”
There are rough seas ahead for those who desire to remain faithful. Some have not realised this yet and are surprised such days are upon the Church. They will learn and hopefully adapt. Their souls will survive unscathed even if their minds and bodies do not.
What should we do in the meantime? By the grace of God, remain faithful. For those in teaching ministries, do as Jesus and the apostles did, call people to repentance and faith irrespective of their station in life. Church members should likewise make every effort to live in light of the grace and mercy of our Saviour and share the hope that lives within.
Remember, we win because Jesus has already won. Delusion and judgment are just part of what we have to endure before we get home.