If I was Satan I would divide the world’s population into two groups: the church and everyone else. I would not be concerned with the two-thirds of humanity listed in the “everyone else” category because they are already mine by fiat–they have gifted their souls to me in spite of very little effort on my part. I would provide for those in the “everyone else” group a variety of religions so as to meet the various wants, needs and inclinations of every heathen mind that would ever exist, including those who claim to have no need for nor recognition of religion of any kind. Unbeknownst to the “everyone else” group, they would have been worshiping and obeying me all along. Regardless of which religion they might be involved in, their master would always be the one whom the Biblical God calls “the god of this world” (2 Cor. 4:4) and “the prince of the power of the air” (Eph. 2:2)–titles I would wear with great pride. If at any time during this age the Biblical God and I got into a soul-owning contest, I would win by a 99% to 1% margin.
Having two-thirds of humanity safely trapped in my religious web, I would concentrate all of my energy, cunning and vitality into dealing with the other one-third. Through spiritual hook and crook I would deceive these people into my religious abyss by making them believe that they were in the Biblical God’s church. These people would give themselves the title of “Christian” simply because they would believe in Jesus Christ. The fact that I–the sworn enemy of both them and the God they profess–believe in Jesus would have no bearing on the issue, proving that spiritual ignorance and spiritual bliss go hand-in-hand. Because this group would have as its singular source of Truth one entity–the Holy Bible–I would work tirelessly to cause group members to have many different views of and attitudes toward that Book. I would make available to them a wide variety of religious offerings, each one supposedly based on “Bible Truth.” By keeping them ignorant of that Bible I would insure that no one raised questions they could not answer.
Because church people would claim to have only the Bible as their source of Truth, and because it is already written so that I could not change its contents, my first task would be to cause them to interpret His Truth according to their preconceived ideas and personal desires. Of course, I would be the designer of their preconceived ideas and personal desires. Obviously, the only way I could keep them under my control and in my church system would be to keep them ignorant of 99% of God’s Truth. I would allow them to know just enough of it to make their religion seem legitimate. I would allow them to know and believe His “headlines” (His promises). However, I would prevent them from knowing about His “fine print” (knowledge of how to receive His promises). To do this I would convince them that they need not study the Bible as God commands (2 Tim. 2:15), that all they need to do is believe in His Son Jesus. To implement and sustain this lie I would offer substitute “truths” that would be much easier for them to believe and obey. Let us now examine a few of those “truths” that I would make so appealing that my people would accept them without question. I would make this possible by convincing them that my false prophets were actually called by the Biblical God Himself. Their smooth deliveries, good radio and television presentations, along with their ability to proclaim God’s “headlines” in a convincing fashion would enable my ministers to deceive them into following them into my church system. The fact that Jesus warned that this exact thing would take place (Mat. 24:3,4) would have no effect on the victims.
My first move would be to choose one of the Biblical God’s Truths that, if not believed and obeyed, would automatically disqualify the “Christian” from any possibility of receiving salvation. Because one either belongs to me (my church) or God (His church(, the rejection of this one vital Truth would officially make these people my parishioners and members in good standing within my counterfeit church system. For my primary weapon of mass deception I would choose God’s fourth commandment because it is the most easily dismissed Truth for my parishioners to reject. Because this commandment was designated by God Himself as the “sign” that one belongs to Him (Exo. 31:17), I would entice my followers to accept a substitute sign, one that would more easily fit into their weekly schedule. Unbeknownst to them, embracing my false sign would prove that they belonged to me. I would cause them to eagerly embrace my sign and zealously defend it. Not only that, but I would cause them to believe that my substitute “sign” proved that one was a “true Bible Christian.” This sign would be so universally accepted that even non-believers would recognize it as “proof” that one was a self-professed “Christian.” The fact that one of God’s writers (James) declared that to break even one of His Ten Commandments caused one to break them all (2:10)–making one a worker of iniquity (Lawlessness)–would have no effect on my people’s “truth” regarding the true Sabbath. The fact that Jesus said He would reject workers of iniquity on the Day of Judgment (Mat. 7:23) would be ignored by my parishioners. My control over them would be so complete that, even after admitting that this Truth had been written in the New Testament by an apostle of Jesus Himself, they would reject it. Having accomplished all of the above, convincing my people that the Biblical Sabbath was a meaningless relic of the distant past would be child’s play.
If I was Satan I would convince my church members that, even though God’s true saints had observed the Biblical (7th day–Saturday) Sabbath for the first 331 years of the New Testament Church’s existence, the Sunday Sabbath was now God’s choice. I would cause them to ignore the fact that God had not changed His Sabbath day–the day He called “My holy day” (Isa. 58:13)–but that Pope Sylvester I had changed it in 364 A.D. at the Council of Laodicea. I would convince my parishioners that the only proof they needed that Sunday was God’s new Sabbath was: “That’s what I was always taught.” Biblical proof to the contrary would be considered irrelevant.
If I was Satan my people would give no credence to the fact that, when Jesus was asked by a rich man and a lawyer what they must do to inherit eternal life, He had told them without qualification that they must obey His commandments. Nor would they consider the fact that He did not exclude #4. The fact that the Sunday Sabbath was instituted by Sylvester I in order to appease sun worshipers in the church who paid homage to their God on his day–Sunday, the Day of the Sun–would have no effect on this most important church “truth.”
If I was Satan my control over my parishioners would total and unquestioned. My religion would be so appealing that to even suggest that my gospel was not straight from the mouth of the Biblical God would be met with anger and resentment. The fact that the Apostle Paul had specifically warned the church about false “truths” being preached by my false prophets (Gal. 1:6-9) would be of no effect. Which brings us to my next weapon of mass spiritual destruction–my lies concerning the demise of the Ten Commandment Law. L.J.