November 1, 2015

Deluded by Persuasion – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

“I say this so that no one will delude you with persuasive argument.” (Colossians 2:4)

Any man can delude us with words that are designed to capture our reason. The unusual word chosen by the Holy Spirit to describe the process is paralogizomai. The basic meaning is “alongside of reason.” It is used only one other time, in James 1:22, “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.”

That self-deception is accomplished through “persuasive argument” (Greek pithanologia), used only here in Colossians. It couples the term for “reason” with “persuasion” and contains the foundation for the English word “analogy,” a very similar process of using familiar words to transfer a known idea to something else. It is deception accomplished by transferring truth onto an untruth.

During the training of the disciples, Jesus often warned that it was possible for His followers to be misled by those who would come and make attempts to claim some role with His authority.

For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many.” (Matthew 24:5).

“Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many.” (Matthew 24:11).

“For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect.” (Matthew 24:24).

The stated purpose for gifted leaders in churches was to remedy the immaturity of childish disciples who would be…

tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects…” (Ephesians 4:14-15)

All of this divine instruction is drastically out of tune with the “feel good” proclamations of preachers and pundits who insist that we be “inclusive,” and “tolerant” of those who teach different doctrines. This is desirable among the many who do not believe in “truth.” It produces a “peace” which camouflages error.

The danger is not new. Prophets of old warned of similar deceitful arguments.

“It is definitely because they have misled My people by saying, ‘Peace!’ when there is no peace. And when anyone builds a wall, behold, they plaster it over with whitewash;” (Ezekiel 13:10)

They heal the brokenness of the daughter of My people superficially, Saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ But there is no peace.” (Jeremiah 8:11)

Paul taught about peace and full assurance, but certainly did not indicate that it is appropriately attained by ignoring false doctrine. He prayed that the Colossians would attain …

to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge…” (Colossians 2:2-3)

There is a true knowledge, therefore a false knowledge. Paul follows with a reference to Christ…“in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I say this so that no one will delude you with persuasive argument.”

We should be warned and alarmed at the danger of being deluded by “persuasive argument, no matter how appealing and peaceful it may sound.”

Adapted from an article by Henry M. Morris III

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