"The best that I can hope is that this has just opened a window, and that as you look through it you are seeing one thing - how superior is Jesus Christ to all else!"
- T. Austin-Sparks
I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. (2 Corinthians 11:3)
Deception is not something out there that is put upon us willy-nilly, or in spite of ourselves. All deception has its own ground in man. What is that ground? It is the fact that man is now a psychical being. Now if you can get to the bottom of that, if you can apprehend that, you will understand the whole thing. The ground of all this is in the fact that man is a psychical being, and when Satan interfered with man at the beginning and man consented along the line of his own soul-life, Satan made man suitable to his own government. It was not that he came and set himself up as mans ruler and subjected man by sheer force to his own government. How did he do it? By breaking into that realm in mans being where man was linked with God, and that was in the realm of mans spirit. He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit, and man was in fellowship and communion with God by means of his spirit, not his soul, not his body. These two were under the government of his spirit. The enemy, the Deceiver came to mans soul, and instead of man reacting by his spirit-fellowship with, and knowledge of, God, he dropped down on to his soul, came out of his spirit and reacted in his soul.
What is soul? It is reason, emotion, feeling, desire, and then, of course, choice, or will. And the enemy reasoned through the desires and captured the will by deception. You see what happened when man violated the very organ of his union with God, his spirit.... So the enemy governs man, and the whole of the race now through the nature of the soul-life. What is the basis of deception? It is just that! How do you get a counterfeit Holy Ghost operating? By reason of your psychical nature. You can become mediumistic in your very psychical nature and open all the avenues of your being to supernatural guidance and come under the power, the sway, dominion, of deceiving spirits operating in a multitude of ways. You can so suspend your soul and come into a state of utter passivity that you are open to everything to play upon you. You can have your quiet hour in your soul, which is the most perilous hour of your life. That happens by suspending all spiritual activity and becoming utterly passive and opening your psychical being, which is a most dangerous thing. God never asks you to become spiritually passive. Waiting upon God is not being spiritually passive. God wants us active in spirit even when waiting on Him in silence.