Opposers of true worship are skilled at deception
Watchtower, 3/15/1986, pages 10-11
"Do Not Be Quickly Shaken From Your Reason"
"But the Devil and other opposers of true worship are skilled in deception. We should never forget that they stand ever ready to break our integrity if they can. Their propaganda is designed to weaken our faith, to cool our love for God, to sow doubts in our minds-yes, to make the spiritual paradise appear to be no paradise at all," (Watchtower, Mar. 15, 1986, p. 10-11).
Comment: Of course, the implication is that those in true worship are the Jehovah's Witnesses. All others are using deception. Notice the accusation that those who oppose the Jehovah's Witness' organization are labeled as deceivers.
(Continued) . . .
How thankful we were to learn that Jehovah will soon remove pain, sorrow, and even death. (Revelation 21:3, 4) Imagine, living forever on a paradise earth, with perfect health and complete happiness! It was almost too good to be true. But it was true. It was backed by God's Word. It was thrilling! Undoubtedly, we felt just like Jesus' disciples when he appeared to them after his resurrection. They said to one another: "Were not our hearts burning as he was speaking to us on the road, as he was fully opening up the Scriptures to us?" (Luke 24:32) Yes, on learning the truth and dedicating our lives to Jehovah, we found ourselves in a spiritual paradise. What a blessing!
But being in Jehovah's spiritual paradise is not something we can take for granted. We came into this paradise voluntarily; we can walk right out (or be put out) if we go into unbelief or willfully violate Jehovah's righteous laws. Of course, this will not happen if we keep strong the 'love we had at first,' if we continue to appreciate all of Jehovah's provisions to keep us spiritually strong. (Revelation 2:4) But the Devil and other opposers of true worship are skilled in deception. We should never forget that they stand ever ready to break our integrity if they can. Their propaganda is designed to weaken our faith, to cool our love for God, to sow doubts in our minds-yes, to make the spiritual paradise appear to be no paradise at all.
To borrow from a proverbial saying, we could come to the point where we would find it difficult, perhaps even impossible, to see the forest of the spiritual paradise because of looking so closely at the imperfect human trees now in it. The thrill we had in learning the truth of God's Word, the grand hope we came to have, the love we developed for God and our spiritual brothers, and the zeal we had for Jehovah's service can fade. If drastic steps are not taken to reverse any such spiritual deterioration, soon God's loving requirements seem to be oppressive. The wholesome spiritual food from "the faithful and discreet slave" may seem to be something contemptible, and the brotherhood of loving servants of Jehovah may appear to be a household of enemies. Then the only satisfaction, of a perverted kind, may come in beginning to beat one's fellow slaves with slander and half-truths.-Matthew 24:45-51.
Yes, we could not only lose the blessings of the spiritual paradise now but, more seriously, also lose the hope of living eternally in the earthly Paradise. And we could lose out for the same reason that Adam and Eve lost the Paradise of Eden. They had everything they needed to be perfectly happy and could have lived forever. But independence-actually a different teaching-was more important to them than were obedience to Jehovah and the blessings of Eden. Eve was deceived. While Adam was not deceived, he let the force of circumstances, including the strong influence of his wife, cause him to sin also. Therefore, they were put out of Paradise, to live a miserable life until their death. They lost the prospect of everlasting life for themselves and brought an inheritance of sin and death upon their offspring. (Genesis 3:1-7, 14-19, 24; 1 Timothy 2:14; Romans 5:12) What a terrible price to pay for their so-called independence!
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