The Devil's Delusion!
"And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God." 2 Cor. 4:3-4
Satan blinds the minds of unbelievers through hiding the light of the Gospel of Christ, and he does this by substituting his own gospel. Appropriately is he designated "This great dragon; the ancient serpent called the Devil, or Satan, the one deceiving the whole world." Rev. 12:9.
In merely appealing to "the best that is within man," and in simply exhorting him to "lead a nobler life" there is afforded a general platform upon which those of every shade of opinion can unite and proclaim this common message.
In contradistinction to the Gospel of Christ, the gospel of Satan teaches salvation by works. It inculcates justification before God on the ground of human merits. Its motto is, "Be good and do good." But it fails to recognize that in the flesh there dwells no good thing. Its various ramifications and organizations are manifold. Temperance, Reform Movements, Christian Social Leagues, Ethical Culture Societies, Peace Congresses are all employed (perhaps unconsciously) in proclaiming this gospel of Satan; salvation by works.
The gospel of Satan propagates the principles of self sacrifice, charity and benevolence; and teaches us to live for the good of others, and to be kind to all. It appeals strongly to the carnal mind and is popular with the masses, because it ignores the solemn facts that by nature man is a fallen creature, alienated from the life of God, and dead in trespasses and sins, and that his only hope lies in being born again.
The gospel of Satan is a bloodless gospel, and presents a crossless Christ!
The apostles of Satan are not saloon keepers and white slave traffickers; but are for the most part ordained ministers. Thousands of those who occupy our modern pulpits are no longer engaged in presenting the Gospel, but have turned aside from the Truth and have given heed unto fables. Instead of magnifying the enormity of sin and setting forth its eternal consequences, they minimize it by declaring that sin is merely ignorance or the absence of good. Instead of warning their hearers to "flee from the wrath to come" they make God a liar by declaring that He is too loving and merciful to send any of His own creatures to eternal torment.
Their message may sound very plausible and their aim appear very praiseworthy, yet we read of them, "For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve." 2 Cor. 11:13-15
In Proverbs 14:12 we read, "There is a way that seems right to a man but in the end it leads to death." This "way" which ends in "death" is the Devil's Delusion; the gospel of Satan; a way of salvation by human attainment. It is a way which "seems right," that is to say, it is presented in such a plausible way that it appeals to the natural man. It is set forth in such a subtle and attractive manner, that it commends itself to the intelligence of its hearers.
By virtue of the fact that it appropriates to itself religious terminology, sometimes appeals to the Bible for its support (whenever this suits its purpose), holds up before men lofty ideals, and is proclaimed by those who have graduated from our theological institutions, countless multitudes are decoyed and deceived by it!
When the 'Father of Lies' enters the pulpit, it is not his custom to flatly deny the fundamental truths of Christianity, rather does he tacitly acknowledge them, and then proceed to give an erroneous interpretation and a false application. For example: he would not be so foolish as to boldly announce his disbelief in a personal God; he takes His existence for granted and then gives a false description of His character. He announces that God is the spiritual Father of all men, when the Scriptures plainly tell us that we are "the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus" (Gal 3:26). Further, he declares that God is far too merciful to ever send any member of the human race to Hell, when God Himself has said, "And anyone whose name was not found recorded in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire." Rev. 20:15
There will be many in the Lake of Fire who lived life with good intentions, honest resolutions and exalted ideals; those who were just in their dealings, fair in their transactions and charitable in all their ways; men who prided themselves in their integrity, but who sought to justify themselves before God by their own righteousness; men who were moral, merciful and magnanimous; but who never saw themselves as guilty, lost, hell deserving sinners needing a Savior.
The Devil's Delusion is that we can be saved by our own works, and justified by our own deeds. "He saved us, not because of the good things we did, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins and gave us a new life through the Holy Spirit." Titus 3:5
"So that Satan will not outsmart us. For we are very familiar with his evil schemes." 2 Cor. 2:11