God is truth. Truth is solid. Truth is reliable. Truth doesn’t change. So much more could be said about truth, and although atheists might argue differently, the whole huamn concept of truth is derived from the nature and character of God. Mankind was created in the image of God to recognize and embrace truth, yet from the very beginning, when Satan introduced the first lie in the Garden of Eden, mankind as been susceptible to deception.
In the Old Testament, we see that, time after time, God’s chosen people would stray from Him and give their allegiance to idls and false gods. Even when there were righteous leaders who helped turn the people back to the truth through religious reforms accompanied by repentance and renewed faith in God, they often fell short of fully eliminating the vestiges of deception.
Bible stories of virtuous campaigns, when idols were destroyed and people turned back to God, so often include a statement that the high places were not removed, essentially leaving a foothold for the spiritual enemy to regain purchase in the lives of God’s people. These records are evidence that humanity has a very hard time completely letting go of things we have become comfortable with, and once a belief system is incorportated into a culture it is very hard to completely displac eit. Throughout the world today, this pattern continues to persist and results in something called syncretism, which is a mixing of belief systems. This is why some of the people groups we minister to in Nigeria are described as having a religion with roots in Christianity, but it is not theologically Christian.
This is also why it is so critical for us to not only proclaim God’s truth through radio, but to also be able to provide on-the-ground listener support to help disciple new believers and walk them through the process of accepting Jesus as their Lord and completely letting go of all pagan beliefs and practices.
The power of God’s word to convict and cause people to respond in faith is truly amazing, and the enemy tries to maintain a foothold by convincing people that they can invite God into their lives without completely getting rid of their former gods.
On of the enemy’s tactics to accomplish this is fear. An example is the account of a man in Nigeria who had been assigned the role of ancestral spirit priest for his family. When appointed, he was not only given an extensive list of restrictions and expectations that made life burdensome for him, but he was also told that if he ever tried to abandon his post, the ancestral spirits would become angry and kill him.
After hearing of the new life and freedom offered by Christ, he accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior and included this statement in his letter to us: “The decision to abandon the bondaged priesthood was not easy, not until you came to visit me as I requested. I have not died, as this was a fear. I am free indeed because Christ had saved me. The days of ignorance are now over.”
The list of tools the enemy uses to breed deception and keep people from the truth is extensive, including such things as fear, ignorance, confusion, complacency and tolerance. Our task is to proclaim God’s truth and walk beside new believers.
We praise God for the many strong believers who work with us in each country to care for and disciple radio listeners as they turn to Christ and find freedom in the unadulterated truth. We are also grateful for your prayers and the resources you provide so that we can continue proclaiming God’s truth and leading people into full freedom from false beliefs and pagan practices.