“Take heed that no man deceives you.” These were the first words Jesus spoke in Matthew 24 when the disciples asked Him about the signs of His second coming. Deception is a huge danger in these last days. To say that any one of us is above getting caught in one of the fowler’s snares would be prideful and wrong. I, myself, have been caught. There was a time when it never even occurred to me that the enemy would have teachers masquerading as Christians in order to lead people into error. I still hadn’t read 2 Corinthians 11:13-14, “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light.” I remember how I thought and felt during the whole process, and on hindsight, I learned four ways to avoid spiritual deception for the future.
God woke me up to the times we are living in between 2011-2012. In May of 2012, He let me know that I needed to get serious about my faith. He weaned me off Alex Jones and conspiracies about the New World Order. He helped me to find communities of believers online for fellowship. In those days, I watched a ton of YouTube videos. I was hungry for more and more information about the God who came for me and invited me into a real relationship with Him.
Caught in the Snare
One channel I found was a handsome Australian man. I don’t remember the name or a whole lot of what he talked about, but on one episode, he was responding to a video he had made recommending certain other YouTube channels. Apparently, he had gotten a lot of bad feedback from the list, so he had taken it down. He was, however, still recommending one channel in particular that he would not take back.
In the comment section, a man said that he and this other channel owner were witches. Another man agreed. I, of course, stood up for the Aussie. How could these two men judge like that? None of his teaching that I had seen from him would indicate anything was amiss. I mean, there was one video in which the Holy Spirit had come upon him so strongly that he had trouble talking through the message he was receiving. That was kind of weird, but God can do what He wants, right? I told the two men that they had better be careful what they said about the Holy Spirit.
Warnings Were Adding Up
I also noticed in the comments that the channel owner he had recommended made a nice comment on his video. He told her how absolutely thrilled he was for her to grace his channel with a comment. I checked her out. This channel’s name I DO remember: Still Small Voice. She isn’t on YouTube anymore because of all the videos people made exposing her for what she is, but she is still around on other platforms. I would not recommend going to her sites, but if you do, please cover yourself with prayers of protection.
Anyway, the first thing I noticed when I got to her channel was that her voice made me extremely uncomfortable. It was a little like trying to sit still while something gross crawled on me. I had to force myself to stay and listen. I got through part of one video and had to quit. The voice was too much.
I went back to the first channel with the cute Aussie. He was filming this particular video in bed. Didn’t he know that was a little distracting for the ladies? Anyway, he was recommending her channel again, so I wondered if I had been a bit hasty. I tried again. The video I tried next was about the channel owner herself having a vision. Mother Claire said that she danced with Jesus. He had come to her in the night, and they had danced together, intertwined like lovers. I didn’t get through that one either.
Prayers for Discernment
I was distressed. It didn’t make sense that a channel I liked so much could recommend a channel that made me so uncomfortable. I had to know for sure, and I wasn’t getting anywhere on my own. So, I prayed to God, asking for Him to show me if that channel was from Him.
That night, I had a dream. I was lying in bed, and Jesus came to the side of the bed. I said, “Jesus, I love you!” Then the “Jesus” moved over top of me like a man with a woman. I reeled back in horror, and he turned into a great black dragon. The next morning was a Saturday. When I got up, I went straight to YouTube to another channel I listened to, and the brother there was talking about deception. He mentioned Still Small Voice by name as a channel that was “straight from the dragon himself, Satan.” That was confirmation enough that the one channel was false, but what about the other one?
I started thinking about the Aussie’s channel. On hindsight, he had pushed a lot of fear. He also claimed supernatural encounters that, upon further reflection, were not consistent with the Holy Spirit. Finally, when he received a visit from SSV to his channel, he didn’t react like a brother in Christ. He reacted much more like a fawning underling. I realized that Mother Claire is likely very high up in demonic circles, and it was probably a great honor for her to make an appearance on his channel. I unsubscribed from the Aussie that same day.
4 Ways to Avoid Spiritual Deception
Avoid Deception By Listening to the Holy Spirit
“However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.”JOHN 16:13
At the time this happened, I didn’t know enough about the Bible to catch any errors in the Aussie’s teaching, but the Holy Spirit had tried to warn me a few times. The man was nice to look at, had a great accent, and talked about interesting things. I didn’t want to believe he was anything other than sincere. Each time I would get a “check,” I explained it away. The strange spiritual encounter video, the video from the bed, the fawning comment to SSV — I had excuses for everything.
Even when I heard that voice from the SSV channel that set me on edge, I didn’t stop listening immediately. I pushed through past the Holy Spirit’s extreme warnings that it was harmful. I WANTED to find value there. The Bible says, “Buy the truth and sell it not.” I was selling the truth, trading what was real for how I wanted things to be.
Avoid Deception By Listening to Fellow Christians
“As iron sharpens iron,so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.”Proverbs 27:17
When the two men made the comment that the channels were owned by witches, it was a shock to me. I was watching for error, but it never occurred to me that someone from darkness would deliberately try to subvert God’s people. At the time, I also didn’t know a lot about how the Holy Spirit worked. How could I know that the man’s behavior was much more consistent with channeling demonic spirits than getting a message from God? But these two men did, and they also knew enough of the Bible to identify deception when they saw it. Instead of listening to them, considering their words, doing more research, and asking God for truth, I had immediately accused them of judging and warned them about speaking against the Holy Spirit.
I see that a lot on posts and videos these days. Anytime people make comments that a public figure is preaching error or ask questions about a person’s fruit, people will jump on them immediately. They caution them not to blaspheme the Holy Spirt. They tell them not to touch God’s anointed, and they warn them not to judge a brother in Christ.
When Christians, especially when there are a lot of them, are warning about someone or something, we should take it to God. Don’t immediately assume that the people doing the warning are being judgmental or are in error. Proverbs 12:15 says, “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But a wise man is he who listens to counsel.” Satan DOES have his people masquerading as Christians. It is good and right to be careful and examine public figures, comparing their words and behavior to the Word of God.
Avoid Deception By Asking God For Truth
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”James 1:5
The one thing I did right in the whole scenario was to ask God for truth. It took me a while, but when I finally did it, He answered me very clearly. This isn’t the only time that has happened, either. After this incident, I asked God about another YouTube channel, Jonathan Kleck. I had watched some of his symbolism videos, and they seemed interesting. But some of the things he was saying didn’t add up. I was getting those warning bells again.
This time, though, I remembered my other experience and went straight to God in prayer. Then I opened my Bible to my bookmark, and it was at Ephesians 5. Just eleven verses in, the words just about jumped off the page, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.” Not long after that, I saw a video of JK claiming to be a fallen angel.
Avoid Deception by Abiding In Him
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”John 15:5
The whole idea for this week’s blog started with a thought God gave me on my way to work this week. I was thinking about the words, “Apart from me, you can do nothing.” It’s one of those verses that we hear and say, “Yep, that’s right,” but I don’t think we really get it completely.
Then I thought of a rushing river. The current was strong, moving tiny rowboats toward the edge of a waterfall. The only boats that were not being pulled over were the ones lit up by what I understood to be the Holy Spirit. Those were moving upstream, against the current, and away from danger. Then it hit me. Deception is potent. The devil and his forces are powerful, and he knows his time is short. The only hope any of us has to avoid deception in these last days is to stay very close to Jesus and to continually seek Him for truth.
Having discernment is imperative now. Some public figures and situations are just not as they appear to be. In 1 John 1:4, the Bible says, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” We must listen to the Holy Spirit when He warns us that something is not right. We also need to listen to other Christians who are warning about situations and people and take what they say to the Word of God and to God Himself in prayer. And, most importantly, we must abide in Him. Psalm 91:3 says that surely God will deliver us from the snare of the fowler, but that promise is only for those who dwell in the secret place and abide under His shadow. Apart from Him, we can do nothing.
Like to Read More?
Enjoy articles about warfare? Check out Spiritual Warfare: A Defeated Foe. In it, God uses a housefly to teach me about the way I should view the enemy. Or, try Three Steps to Forgive From the Heart. In that one, we look at the Parable of the Unforgiving Servant and learn ways to truly forgive.
Like to read more from Evangelical Christian sisters who “tell it messy, true, and wonderful because we are His”? Check out Telling Hearts.