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THE QUIET CORNER
with Common Sense 4 Uncommon People
 

Becoming Transparent ~ John C Calkins

Posted: May 26th, 2016   Category: belief, Christ Follower, Deception, Faith, Inspirational, Spirituality, Truth

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“The Woman said to the serpent, “Not at all. We can eat from the trees in the garden. It’s only about the tree in the middle of the garden that God said, ‘Don’t eat from it; don’t even touch it or you’ll die.’”

The serpent told the Woman, “You won’t die. God knows that the moment you eat from that tree, you’ll see what’s really going on. You’ll be just like God, knowing everything, ranging all the way from good to evil.”” Genesis 3:2-5 MSG.

This conversation occurred in the Garden of Eden, before the fall of mankind. These were carefully chosen words, both from our God and from Satan. There remains however, a matter of confusion with regard to the meaning of these words and that is exactly what Satan was counting on. God and Satan have represented death or dying to us from very different perspectives. From both Satan and God, in communications with us, bodily death isn’t their greatest concern. For in both of their representations, our souls, the spiritual essence of who we are lives on after bodily death. It’s the where and how which differs. For us, dying and death was and for many still is an entirely physical concept, because we have not yet experienced it or it’s represented after-the-fact alternatives.

Death to God means eternal separation from Him. To Satan, death simply means joining him without the “burden” of God in the picture. Death (spiritually speaking beyond the obvious) is the natural consequence of sin. When Satan said, “you will not die” he was being deceptive yet truthful from his perspective. God on the other hand was and is being spiritually literal in His warning. For God is always absolute, unabridged truth. Whatever God says is truth. It manifests as truth when He says it. When we speak sound comes out. When God speaks truth is created. Such is the nature of God and all which He creates with His spoken words. When Satan speaks with us, only sound comes out, but it is always laced with deception.

When Satan addressed Eve in the Garden that day, he was being truthful but certainly not transparent. When Satan confronted Jesus 5,000 years later, he was still being truthful, yet deceptively manipulative and intentionally destructive. Eve and Adam were without God in that fallen moment 5,000 of our years earlier, yet Jesus (during His time among us) was never without God.

There is of course a lesson in this. Satan (or evil) appeals to our human nature, our body and mind. While God appeals to our created nature, spirit and soul. Without God, we are in a sense, naive and highly susceptible to the evils of deception. With God always present within us, such deception becomes obvious to us. To the extent that the world is or seems evil, such evil obfuscates the reasoning of those who are at least momentarily without God. The shelves of understanding, between our bookends of life range from good to evil. Between those very consequential bookends stand the vast majority of us, in the shadows of deception. God had not revealed the trinity of His nature to man in the Garden because He had no need to. He was there, fully available and entirely communicative. God now stands virtually transparent before us, as light without darkness. There was no obfuscating wall of sin standing between man and God in the Garden initially. It was there but in the peripheral shadows slithering around waiting for the perfect opportunity to present. It finally came. The tree of knowledge and awareness was growing there, mankind was hungry and tempted by it’s fruits and God was elsewhere. Evil stood up quickly and spoke deceptively to us. We obliged, after which everything else came too late. Too late for the next 5,000 years. Until finally Jesus came to try and redeem our souls with His blood. I wrote “try” there, because such redemptions still require our cooperation and respect for the blood of the cross. That would be illustrated by our choices and our willingness of understanding.

I’m not completely sure about Satan being a liar, but I know that he is deceptive. Evil as his reflection can be seen in many others by that very same measurable, namely deception. God said, there will be no liars (deceivers) in heaven because God knows that deception is entirely reflective of evil which he has created other plans for. We can see, hear and discern both evil and deception by enlisting and embedding God in our lives. We might not defeat evil with those same choices but we can avoid falling victim to it’s influences. In that way we too can defeat death and realize the truth of death as everyone should know it. To be without God in this life means to be without life as intended by God. To God that is what constitutes death for us. To Satan that same death is victory, at least for the time being. For us this is represented as hell. Satan wasn’t lying when he said “you’ll know what’s going on.” We do or should know because God has made all of that known to any and all who wonder by way of His Word and Spirit. Yet too many have accepted and promoted what’s going on, “all the way from good to evil” and have chosen to ignore God’s instruction and warnings. Distinguishing between truth and deception is the foundational principle of God’s influence when He is with us. The core of our susceptibility lies somewhere between our total acceptance and/or partial rejection of God’s ways in everything we do and for everyone we do it with.

I don’t believe that Satan or those whom he has influenced can successfully deceive anybody who is with God. God has seen to that. Yet much of the world has been deceived. I believe that Satan can and will continue to be deceptive, misleading and spiritually destructive to those who listen. This will become alarmingly obvious, but only to those who are with God. The rest will continue to live (as such) and to be unknowingly deceived. To be a victim or not to be, the choice is ours. As is the choice of life or death in far more important spiritual sense. Being deceived might be construed as an innocent mistake, but neglecting God is an oblivious choice. In this case, such a bad choice negates the innocence for the inevitable consequences. Only Jesus can remedy that. Satan and all of those whom he influences are walls of deception standing between others and God. God is totally transparent if we’re looking for Him (not invisible as so many believe). There is a huge difference. Our objective is to become evermore like God as Satan has deceptively promoted. But, we will do this by embedding God in our our lives not by ignoring or rejecting Him while in pursuits of our own. Just ask God if you’re not a believer, He will tell you the truth and show you the way, which won’t hurt anyone. God is special that way, only those who don’t know Him will get spiritually hurt, which is of their own doing.

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