This world is full of deception – from the commercial ads we see on TV to the top leaders of our government. Even the Bible tells us that Satan “deceives the whole world” (Revelation 12:9).
However, on a personal level, there is one deception that can easily encroach in the lives of many Christians. This deception is so common that the majority of the Christian world is plagued with this deception. It can even have infected you, me, or the person preaching in your pulpit. As a matter of fact, all of us, Christians, have been deceived by this type of trickery and deceitfulness at some point in our lives.
Want to know what this deception is? Here’s what James 1:22 tells us:
“But be doers of the word, and not the hearers only, DECEIVING yourselves.”
Did you grasp that? I am talking about the deception of hearing God’s word and not doing it. You deceive yourself by hearing and not doing.
There’s no doubt; Christianity is the most widespread religion on earth. About 2.2 billion people proclaimed to be followers of Christ. But in reality, most Christians today are simply hearers and not followers. They are just indifferent spectators and not doers.
Most people have heard about the incredible life, death, and sacrifice of Jesus Christ. He gruesomely died for every single soul on this Earth. Even if you are the only sinner left, Christ will still choose to die for you. That’s how much God and Jesus loved us. Thus, many people are willing to happily accept the blood of Jesus to cover their sins, pray the “Sinner’s Prayer,” and believe in His all saving grace.
Here’s where the persistent problem lies: people knew of Christ, but most don’t want to follow His teachings and do what God says in the Bible! They only cherry pick those that are convenient to them and disregard the rest. In effect, they are saying, “I believe in you Jesus, but I can’t follow everything you want me to do.” And that is how exactly we are deceiving ourselves!
We FOOL ourselves by saying that we love God and are excited to hear anything about Him. We jump for joy during worship services; we sing hymns and chant our heart out; we are moved when hearing of inspiring stories of Christians, and cry when we see miracles.
But when it comes down to actually changing our lives and following His commandments, we are too quick to shrug our shoulders, look the other way, and go on with believing a deceptive LIE that we are still “Christians” – followers of Christ.
If we truly love God, we must SERIOUSLY take into heart what the Apostle John said:
“For this is the LOVE OF GOD, that we keep His commandments” (I John 5:3).
If we truly love God, then we need to keep His commandments. That is what it means to love God. Jesus Christ added: “Blessed are they that hear the word of God, and KEEP it” (Luke 11:28).
There’s no escaping the plain and simple fact: WE MUST NOT JUST BE HEARERS, BUT DOERS AS WELL. If we want to shatter the veil of self-deceit that has long covered our eyes, we need to do the things that we learned.
We are not Christians because of the things that we know. We are Christians because of the things that we do.
And what will happen if we follow God’s commandments and not just hear them? Christ said, “If ye know these things, HAPPY are you if you DO them” (John 13:7).
Hearing God’s word does not make us happy. What makes us happy is the doing! Not only that but by doing God’s commandments, we shall also be BLESSED (Luke 11:28).
So it is the time that we stop deceiving ourselves. Hear God’s word and keep it.
This post is inspired by the free eBook, “How to be an Overcomer.”