“Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and shrewd in their own sight! And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world— he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.” (Isaiah 5:20-21; Revelation 12:9)
There have been few times in history when a mass psychosis seems to have taken hold of an entire civilization. We are living in such a time. It would be interesting to go back a few generations and bring a person back into our own time and observe their reaction to where we are as a culture. I think disbelief and shock would characterize their response to our current state of affairs.
In the not too distant past right living was taught and expected. Universal truths in regard to morals and ethics were universally accepted and lived by. When those standards were broken swift consequences followed. When a man and women married they were expected to work through their problems. If an individual committed a crime they were expected to face judgment. Kids were taught to respect their elders. People were taught personal responsibility and held accountable by their peers. Lying was always wrong. Hard work was expected. The family mattered; motherhood cherished; babies were a blessing; fathers were expected to take care of their families. God was honored; His laws obeyed; and the church respected. Teachers taught kids reading, writing, and arithmetic. The police were seen as the good guys; criminals were not held up as role models; and Hollywood understood that modesty was a necessity for a moral society.
There were standards that were held on the geopolitical front as well. When the evils of Hitler’s National Socialism captivated the German people and created a mass psychosis there, the rest of the Western world acted to stop the madness. When it became clear that communist Russia was ambitious for world domination, the West, again, curtailed their advances. Today the world is no longer capable of acting against evil with decisive action. The peoples of the West have been paralyzed by political correctness and the politicization of life.
Political correctness has generated doubt in the hearts of people about right and wrong, truth and falsehood, and has even led people to obsess about their own motivations. The politicization of life has emasculated people from being able to clearly discern right and wrong. It has led to the idea that ethics are the product of power plays by certain sectors of society. No longer do we say that an action is wrong because it is a breach of an accepted principle of conduct. Instead we analyze what people do by what group they claim allegiance to. If someone claims an action is wrong, they are usually denounced as suffering from some form of “phobia.” Instead of characterizing certain behaviors as wrong, the claim is made that the person who believes that there is such a thing as “immoral” or “wrong” behavior is practicing discrimination based on their own ignorance and deep seated fears. As such, people who in the past might have been bold in their stance against falsehood and wrongdoing are today more likely to ask, “Why am I so intolerant?” and go see a therapist.
Recently while watching the news, a conservative news anchor on a major network made the statement that “there is nothing wrong with watching porn.” To say such an action is wrong is deemed inappropriate and judgmental. However, consider the firestorm that would have occurred thirty years ago for making that statement. She would be in a new career by now. But today, the only accepted sin is to declare that people can actually be wrong.
And while most people understand that right and wrong, truth and falsehood are real things, they are afraid to say so, at least to say so in public. No one wants to be on the receiving end of the vile ad hominem diatribes that usually accompany a stand for truth. I would like to believe the news anchor understands pornography to be wrong and simply made her remark because that is the expedient political correct way to respond today.
But, which action is worse: saying that sexual depravity is okay, or saying that it is okay out of fear of reprisal? If one declares perversion to be okay, then that individual is perverse. But, if someone declares perversion to be okay out of a fear that they might suffer from the larger culture as a result of saying its wrong, then the society is perverse. I would much rather deal with a sick person than a sick society. A single man who hates Jewish people is much easier to deal with than an entire society who hates them. Just ask any Jewish person who suffered under the Nazi’s.
Yet today we live in a society that has been cowed into believing that the only real sin in life is to declare that universal truths should guide how we behave and think. As such, we live in a society that will gladly persecute people for publically proclaiming allegiance to universal truth. Twenty years ago most people would have laughed at the thought that “homosexual marriage” would be taken seriously. Today, many people are afraid to say it’s wrong, even when that is their true conviction. Such is the result of the politicizing of our society.
But, as is clearly evident today, politics is not the arena of truth. It is the arena of power and control. When a person no longer believes in truth, they are not compelled to live by those truths. Today’s liberal activists, politicians, and media moguls who are seeking to outlaw God have no trouble ignoring truth; and as a result, they are not restrained in their pursuit of control over others. Fear, intimidation, and control are their weapons of choice as they seek to silence those who think otherwise.
And consider: if no truth existed, as many claim, then all claims to truth would gladly be accepted. However, the battle betrays the reality. The fight reveals that there are real principles and truths that govern life. But truth is offensive to many people, and they fight because they want to conceal the fact that their actions and desires are contrary to the truth. Jesus said that men love darkness rather that light; so people fight against what is real, not nonexistent.
Those who say there are no truths, fight for what they want to be true. And it is interesting that those same people argue that one should never discriminate, and that society should be tolerant of all points of view. But, they have no problem discriminating against those they want to silence and control; and they tolerate nothing and no one who dares to hold a view that differs from theirs. Hence the battle for truth has moved to the arena of politics, because it is there where domination and control can be gained – and gained under the pretense of a false legitimacy. Those who fight against truth do so because they truly want to rid the world of its influence. They want “their” truth to win, because, ultimately, they want a world without God.
As a result our society is in a crisis. The crisis is not a result of simply rejecting universal truths and standards, but of being led by godless people into accepting the counter-opposite claims once held. What we are experiencing, however, is not an intellectual battle. It is a spiritual one.
There are forces at work that are desperately trying to outlaw God and His influence in the world. But, behind them is one that wants to eliminate any and all reference to God and His claim on creation. His is real. And the battle he wages is real. If he cannot convert you, he will attempt to silence you.
His strategy is to replace what God has declared to be true with everything that opposes and denies God. As a result of his efforts, the things that were once accepted as right are now vilified as wrong, and those things that were known to be wrong are celebrated as right, good, and proper. The world has been turned upside down by his efforts. The great deceiver has been plying his trade and the world is greedily accepting his every ploy and scheme.
This book seeks to chronicle the various falsehoods and deceptions the Great Deceiver has used to rid the world of God’s truth, witness, and influence in the world, so he may have dominion over the souls of men. It is written for the purpose of equipping the saints to persevere in the battle.