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A Deadly Masquerade

“Even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. Therefore, it is not surprising if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness…” – 2 Corinthians 11:14-15

It's totally the wrong time of year for this post, but I want to share some thoughts prompted by my least favorite "holiday" - Halloween. To be frank, I can't stand the entire Halloween "season." But it brings up the question of disguises, and that is important for us as Christians.

Consider this: not darling little children dressed up as ghosts and goblins, but the arch-enemy of mankind – incredibly powerful and utterly evil – dressed up as an angel of light. Pretending to exude goodness and truth and wisdom to everyone around him. And not just him, but an entire army with him, all looking purer than Ivory soap’s 99.44%.

You know, I’d rather that the enemy always looked like the bad guys in Lord of the Rings. You could always tell who to skewer … anyone who was ugly and hideous!

We have it harder. The enemy doesn’t always look like the enemy. The enemy often looks like a friend. For instance,

--- A preacher or author whose theology is mostly right … but just a little bit wrong.

--- A co-worker who offers such wonderful sympathy during lunch breaks and after hours … and a bit of adulterous sex thrown in for added comfort.

--- A friend who says they want to build up your self-esteem … but who actually feeds your ego and pride.

Unlike the wandering trick-or-treaters, Satan doesn’t unmask himself on November 1st. He keeps this masquerade up 365 days a year, and so do his servants – both demonic and human.

God will help you see through these deadly disguises, but you have a part to play: Be aware (Ephesians 6:11-12), be alert (1 Peter 5:8), be prepared (2 Corinthians 10:3-5). It’s time to unmask the enemy!

* When have you been deceived by Satan or one of his servants appearing as an angel of light? What happened?

* What areas of life are you most vulnerable in? These are likely the areas that Satan will attack you.

* What active steps can you take to strengthen your most vulnerable points? Don’t be general: be specific!

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