Volume 32 | Number 9 | November 2004

Inglés Español

Wandering Stars and Delusion

By Dr. O. Talmadge Spence

There is a Greek word in the New Testament translated in the King James Version as "delusion." Paul uses the word in connection with an adjective, "strong," and Jude uses it in connection with a noun, "stars."

False teachers and Antichrist are accompanied with this "strong delusion" from God (II Thess. 2:11), and they react in their various ministries like "wandering stars." The King James' translators certainly realized the great meanings involved because the two words, "delusion" and "wandering," are from that one Greek word planei. Therefore, a delusion is a wandering; and a wandering is a delusion. Vine says that the word, literally, is "a wandering, whereby those who are led astray roam hither and thither, is always used in the New Testament, of mental straying, wrong opinion, error in morals or religion."

We are living in a time of the manifested wholesale departure, wandering, roaming, straying, and going away from the Old-Time Gospel of the Bible. People, churches, denominations, leaders, movements, groups, and individuals are on their way out of orbits and orderly systems of truth which were formerly held dear and sacred. We are never shocked to hear of another star leaving an orderly pulpit, life, and practice to spin down into the darkness of the apostasy. It is manifested with "strong" and energized (energeian) deliberations now. They are on fire, like stars, burning out in the night of the End-Time. We are told that when stars leave their orbits, they ignite, only to burn up. While they are in their orderly orbits, they shine out without burning up. The fixed stars survive; the falling stars disintegrate.

We must always remember that we only have the protection of God's Word as long as we abide under biblical principles. We must remain fixed, in orbit, in God's Word.

We are presently experiencing a grave proliferation of Neo-Christianity (Neo-Orthodoxy, New Evangelicalism, Neo-Morality, and Neo-Pentecostalism). The unsatisfied craving for a new indicates that we have left the old. The charismatic fever is burning up the star; the admixture of old truth of the pentecostal fire is a counterfeit of the original, fixed Spirit-filled Christian. The old, liberal ecumenicity needed this fever and false fire to cover up for the fact that the genuine fire had burned out. Now, the charismatic nova appears, but in reality, Neo-Pentecostalism is but an old mass of cinder aflame again. There is really no difference at all between old modernism and the new charismatic. There was a bit more black in the old star, whereas there is a bit more white in the new star; but they are both the same part and identity of gray. There is a difference between a pentecostal fever and the pentecostal fire. The first is wandering; the second is fixed. The first will burn out; the second just simply shines out. In the old liberalism some truth was present as well as in the new charismatic. In the former, other truth was subtracted; in the latter, some error is added.

It is most important that we observe in this connection: a delusion is not the total absence of truth, but rather is the deceptive addition of error to the truth. Whenever we wander away from the Crystal Truth of the Word of God, there is no path left to roam but in a lie. In every false teacher we find today, there is some truth, but the test of it lies in the fact it is never solely the truth—with neither subtraction nor addition. THEY DO NOT LOVE THE TRUTH!

And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness" (II Thess. 2:11-12).

But as if someone would ask, "How can you know you believe the truth?" The answer was given by Paul in the previous and clear words. Because we have "the love of the truth" (v. 10).