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Discernment in an Age of Deception

Discussion in 'Christian Scriptures' started by Mel333, Jun 12, 2019.

  1. Mel333

    Mel333 Member

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    I found this article rather helpful in its teaching and I hope it might help you as well in discerning deception and how to respond to it.

    Discernment in an Age of Deception: Defining the Believer's Biblical Call to Judge

    Any thoughts on this topic?

    How can we discern deception?
    How do you know who speaks the truth and who doesn't?
    What is truth?
    What is a false teaching? How can we discern it?
    Is rebuking the same as accusing?
    What is the difference between conviction and an accusation?
    What is deception? (seems to twist the truth)

    Don't have to answer them all. Maybe just pick one.

    I'm interested in knowing what your thoughts are on discerning deception and won't be debating, just listening.
     
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  2. W2L

    W2L Well-Known Member

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    Read scripture, particularly the new testament. Pray for wisdom. This answers all your questions.
     
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  3. com7fy8

    com7fy8 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    "And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment." (Philippians 1:9)

    Yes, knowledge of God's word can help. But deeper we need how love has us seeing things.

    For example, if I know God's word so I know someone's arguing is wrong > Philippians 2:13-16 > it is fine to know this, but love makes me able to handle this the best way. I will not only know the person is wrong, but I will care about the person and have compassion in prayer with hope for him or her >

    "He can have compassion on those who are ignorant and going astray, since he himself is also subject to weakness." (Hebrews 5:2)
     
  4. com7fy8

    com7fy8 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    How do we keep from being deceived by wrong people and their wrong ways and wrong ideas? The people might not be well known, yet; so how can you make sure about ones not well known, already?

    We can make sure our own motives really are with God. If we are functioning in godly motives, it can be impossible for anyone to fool us into doing what is not God's will, with them. Because their motives are not ours; and so we simply won't go along with them, for different reasons.

    A simple example can be, someone is very smart and can guarantee me a million dollars, and really would give me a million dollars. Well, I am already "content with such things as you have" (in Hebrews 13:5), and I am seeking how God personally guides me in His peace. And God simply does not guide me to want the million dollars; because He knows there are strings attached, and what they are. Even though I don't know the details, I am already content plus being personally guided in God's peace > Colossians 3:15 > which guides me according to all which God wants and knows is really true. So, I can't be fooled, just because of what I might not know.

    And there are leaders and groups who have motives which we don't have. So, no matter how they might make things look, they can't get us to go their way because we are not motivated by what interests and moves them.

    I'm not greedy; so you can't lure me with a million dollars. Plus, I know God is not a quick fixer, but first about growing and maturing us for all He desires to share with us, and I know money can't make this happen.

    I'm already satisfied by God's love, plus I have various Jesus people who feed me this love and their real example; so you can't fool me into thinking I'm missing out on love and need to get women who I can use. I have been getting brought up in love which does not have us just or mainly using anyone. So, when someone comes along with the "you can use me" act > I don't bite. We get more with God, than we do with any humans.
     
  5. Mel333

    Mel333 Member

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    I like this bit you said that I'll remember forever. 'Being satisfied by God's love'.

    Thank you for taking the time to write this.
     
  6. bcbsr

    bcbsr Newbie

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    Fundamental to that topic is that "The spiritual man makes judgments about all things" 1Co 2:15 The Bereans were commended for even scrutinizing Paul's teachings. "Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true." Acts 17:11

    One of the most misconstrued verses people use to discourage practicing discernment is found in the Sermon on the Mount where Jesus said, "Judge not, that you be not judged." Mt 7:1 He was using a proverbial form of speech, as he does much in that sermon, reflective of the rhetoric of Proverbs, but here speaking of the principle that if you judge others, they will judge you. It's human nature. Try it. He himself judged others and even told his enemies, "Stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgment." John 7:24 And guess what? They judged him. Don't be intimidated in practicing discernment. But make sure you get it right.

    As for principles of discernment, the basic idea is to scrutinize all ideas in light of scripture and in light of the Spirit. John writes, "We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood." 1John 4:6 Can people hear what the apostles are teaching? Are they blind to it? Do they "get it"? Or even if they understand, do they discard it? To discern false teaching you must be familiar with correct teaching. So those practicing discernment should be heavily involved with personal Bible study.

    Understanding scripture is not purely a function of academic study. There's a spiritual element to understanding, an intuitive element, as Paul says in 1Cor 2:6-16 "We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. No, we speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him" — but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment: "For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?" But we have the mind of Christ."
     
  7. Mel333

    Mel333 Member

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    This is really great. Thanks.
     
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