the ongoing pattern of deception

Dipping again into my Church History notes, I come to a section headed “History of Neo-Evangelicalism & the Ecumenical Movement”

The section starts with this:

Satan’s method is to counterfeit the truth, not contend with it. Therefore he produces deceptive bodies.

  1. Neo-Orthodoxy – deception in theology in the 1920s
  2. Neo-Evangelicalism – deception in practice in the 1950s


It is interesting to consider these two notes that go with the quotation/note I made under the title to the lecture. Liberalism/Modernism was, if I may call it, honest unbelief. While it propagated many lies, it propagated honest lies. Out and out lies. Bald-faced lies. In my next note in the church history series, I’ll cover it more specifically.

But liberalism (now sometimes called ‘classic liberalism’) became much less of a thread to Bible-believing Christianity than these two subsequent challenges. These two were greater deceptions.

The first, Neo-Orthodoxy is deceptive because it cloaks liberal ideas in orthodox words. It will speak of inspiration, faith, salvation, redemption, and so on, but mean entirely different things from Biblical Christianity.

The second, Neo-Evangelicalism is deceptive because it applies real, Biblical Christian testimony to disobedient methodology. It does this by distorting the Biblical emphasis to eliminate the negative in the Christian method – conversion becomes commitment, debate becomes dialogue, conviction becomes crisis, and so on.

Well, these movements have had their effects, and still do. Do you suppose Satan is finished with deception? Has he run out of ideas?

What is the next deception? Is it already here?

In these pages, I am often contending against all kinds of things I see as errors. I am afraid that there is plenty of deception to go around, whatever any new movement might be called.

May God keep us free of deception and true to Him.