in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not

see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 2 Corinthians 4:4

 

 

                                                                                                Satan’s Cunning Acts

  Satan, a master of deception, has “blinded the minds of the unbelievers” for thousands of years now. (2 Corinthians 4:4) He has also been relentless in his efforts to corrupt the thinking of God’s worshippers. Why? Satan understands that how we think affects the way we act. He knows that if he can distort our thinking, he can influence our actions for bad.—James 1:14, 15.

  Remember Satan’s method of misleading Eve. The apostle Paul wrote: “I am afraid that somehow, as the serpent seduced Eve by its cunning, your minds might be corrupted away from . . . the Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:3) Working through a cautious serpent, Satan seduced Eve into following a disastrous course. He sought to corrupt her mind, to warp her thinking. The tactic worked. Because she listened, her viewpoint changed, and what was unlawful became desirable. Once her mind was corrupted, she was easily drawn into a sinful act.—Genesis 3:1-6; Revelation 12:9.

  Satan has not changed. His basic tenet remains the same: Corrupt the mind, and sinful actions will follow. Satan has this system’s politics, religion, commerce, and entertainment set up to spread his propaganda. (John 14:30) He has succeeded in distorting the thinking of the vast majority of mankind, changing their attitudes and viewpoints. Conduct that was once viewed as sinful—such as practicing homosexuality, living together without marriage, and bearing children out of wedlock—is often viewed as acceptable, even desirable. How effective has Satan been in seducing humans? The Bible says: “The whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.”—1 John 5:19.

  As Christians, we are by no means immune to Satan’s methods. (1 Corinthians 10:12) Knowing that his time is short, Satan has “great anger” and is especially intent on misleading God’s people. (Revelation 12:12) If we are not careful, the subtle propaganda of Satan and the many “deceivers of the mind” that he uses can corrupt our thinking and seduce us into sin.—Titus 1:10.

  For example, consider the world’s view of marriage. The Bible teaches that marriage is sacred, involving a lasting commitment. (Matthew 19:5, 6, 9) This world’s movies and television programs often portray marriage as a casual agreement that can easily be abandoned. As Christians, we need to beware that this satanic propaganda does not corrupt our thinking. Left unchecked, this influence could distort our viewpoint, weakening our commitment to our mate. Faced with marital problems, we might be tempted to look outside the marriage for understanding and support. Soon another person—perhaps a coworker or a fellow believer—might seem to offer emotional closeness. If we allow a romantic attachment to form, we may find ourselves drawn into a sinful act.

  As another example, consider the spirit of independence that permeates Satan’s world. Many are “headstrong, puffed up with pride.” (2 Timothy 3:4) If such a spirit were to corrupt our thinking, our view of submission and obedience might become distorted. Infected by this spirit, a brother might chafe at counsel from the elders. (Hebrews 12:5) A sister might begin to question God’s arrangement of headship.—1 Corinthians 11:3.

  We can be thankful that Jehovah warns us about Satan’s methods. (2 Corinthians 2:11) Let us be determined never to allow satanic propaganda to make inroads into our thinking. To remain in God’s love, we need to keep our “minds fixed on the things above.”—Colossians 3:2.

[Box on page 194]

IS IT REALLY SPIRITISM?

Principle: “The works of the flesh are manifest, and they are . . . practice of spiritism, . . . divisions, sects . . . Those who practice such things will not inherit God’s kingdom.”—Galatians 5:19-21.

Some questions to ask yourself

Is any custom that I follow associated with false religious beliefs?—2 Corinthians 6:16, 17.

▪ Are any objects that I use directly related to spiritistic practices?—Acts 19:19.

▪ Does any medical treatment I seek involve some form of uncanny or magical power?—Leviticus 19:26.

[Picture on page 184]

Every time someone dedicates himself to Jehovah and is baptized, Satan is proved wrong

[Picture on page 191]

Benefit from Jehovah’s support in times of illness