Saints of God, it is our responsibility to guard our hearts and watch for the enemy of our souls. For the true enemy likes to hide in plain sight. He hides and lurks were it is so easy to overlook him. We expect the enemy of our souls to come at us through the obvious evil strategies such as sickness and disease, addictions and different sexual temptations, but the Bible tells us that he is much more clever than that:
“Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made… “ – Gen 3:1 KJV
We expect him through the obvious, but our gaze needs to be farther reaching than that. We need to see him regardless of where he may lurk. We need to recognize him whether it is through the obvious or the subtle. We expect issues in the secular world, but the enemy also hides in plain sight inside the church.
We would like to remind you that Satan walked into the presence of the Lord. If he did that, then certainly he is not afraid to walk into the local church.
“Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them. And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” – Job 1:6-7 KJV
Judas, who Jesus described as a devil, was so deceived that he was not afraid to be in the company of Jesus or to betray Him. (John 6:70-71)
Hiding in plain sight involves subtilty and misdirection. It requires that the one that attempting to pull the wool over your eyes, gives you something that is tantalizing and fascinating to redirect your focus. Meanwhile, they are doing something underhanded behind the scenes. A simple and obvious example of this concept is with today’s modern magicians, who by sleight of hand, redirects their audience’s attention toward their pretty assistants. While your focus is upon her, they deftly manipulates things out of your sight or behind the scenes.
One of the most common ‘magic’ tricks of the enemy uses in this ancient art of deception is to get Believers to argue or complain about their leaders. He distracts the Believers with petty issues and minutia that has little to do with God’s Salvation for us, their Blessings and Spiritual Inheritance or Eternity. Like the magician, distractions along with the misdirection of our focus to insignificant issues by carnal or demonically influenced people allows the enemy to slip in bad policies, incorrect doctrine and corrupted teachings into the Church.
Nobody is perfect, and we all make mistakes. However, the enemy is very clever at making a mountain out of a molehill. These insignificant issues that are blown up out of proportion allow the enemy to slip in the spirit of offence. This leads to more severe issues. Such severe issues can cause church leaders to implement the wrong policies, diminish their love towards people or begin teaching the wrong doctrine. The changes are often slow, behind the scenes at first, but as that corruption gains traction, it becomes visible for all to see that have an eye for Truth.
The enemy also uses another very simple but surprisingly effective strategy. He influences and deceives many people into thinking that unless a preacher preaches with a certain tonality, cadence in their voice or has certain mannerisms, then they are not anointed. Nothing could be further from the truth. He influences some to think that unless a church has a certain number of people in it or that it if doesn’t have a certain level of ‘stage presence’ then the Spirit of the Lord is not there. Again, nothing could be further from the truth. The ‘skill’ of imitating the external behaviors such as speech patterns and social pleasantries has become so well mastered by the enemy and those looking to exploit the church, that they easily fool the unlearned and untrained. This simple tactic alone lures many into bondage, entrapment and into churches that have little to no spiritual value. Jesus referred to those kind of churches as ‘whited sepulchers.’
“Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.” – Mat 23:27 KJV
The enemy loves to hide in plain sight, using preachers motivated by the wrong motives to preach religious sounding messages. Their religious sounding messages trap the simple. The preachers that fall into this category usually are puffed up by personality, vanity and are full of deception. Their motives are usually money and power. Their messages may entertain and cause excitement but their actions do not align with scripture. They are masters of social engineering and constructs rather than the Truth of God’s Word. The Bible tells us that we are to avoid those that do not preach the True Gospel.
“Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.” – Rom_16:17
Ladies and gentlemen, the onus is upon us. We must be the ones who take the time to read the Bible for ourselves. The responsibility is ours to study His Word so that we recognized the Truth of God’s Word when we hear it. We must be the ones who develop a personal and intimate relationship with Jesus Christ and to hear His voice. It is your responsibility to fight for The True Gospel that has been preached to you.
“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” – Jud 1:3
Beware of those who preach a ‘religious sounding’ message out of the wrong motives. Also, beware of those who work their way into positions of leadership having the wrong motives.
“For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Jud 1:4 KJV
They are easy to spot for those who have eyes to see. Both subtly and blatantly with some even in the pulpit, speaking against the things of God and His Word. They speak against delegated authorities and leadership. The murmur and complain at every opportunity. They work to cause divisions within God’s church. They argue about irrelevant and insignificant issues. They despise leaders who walk in True authority as given by the Grace of God.
“Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.” – Jud 1:8 KJV
And when they don’t understand the True Gospel, teaching or instructions, they assume that the fault is not theirs. They always assume that it is someone else’s fault. They are quick to pass along the blame to someone else. They speak against things that are outside of their current ability to comprehend because of their pride and hardness of heart. They don’t realize that they should humble themselves and learn to have a teachable spirit. As the result of their rebellious attitudes and actions, they hurt themselves and others.
“But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves. Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.” – Jud 1:10-11 KJV
We encourage you to stay strong in the things of the Lord. We encourage you to study His Word and learn for yourself. We encourage you to know that it is by the Power of His Might that causes you to stand in this evil day. Understand that our fight is not against the actual people, but rather our fight is against the spirits and demonic influences that are affecting them.
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;” – Eph 6:10-14 KJV
Our prayer for you is that you will have eyes to see and recognize Truth. We pray that surface appearances and insignificant issues do not deceive you. Our prayer for you is that you will guard your heart with the Spirit of Truth. We pray that you will stay true to the Word of God to the best of your ability through the Power of His Might. We pray that you will have a zeal to read and study God’s Word more than ever. We pray that God will begin to speak to your heart and lead you in the way that He would have to go. We pray that God’s Favor overshadows you even all the more as you determine to follow The Spirit of Truth.
“Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.” – Joh 16:13 KJV
May God’s Grace Abundantly Reign In Your Life!
-Apostle Ric & Prophetess Kathy Steele
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