Disguises are meant to hide and conceal one’s true identity. Over the centuries, spies have used them to get behind enemy lines and gather important intelligence and information that can help their side win a war. During the Holocaust, many Jews assumed disguises to pass undetected on their way to freedom and safety. While disguises can and have been used for good, the whole purpose of a disguise is to hide, conceal, and become someone you are not.
Although disguises come in handy during times of war and oppression, we are warned against using disguises in our spiritual lives. Rather, we are called to live sincerely, purely, and transparently before the Lord and the world around us. However, not all follow this course. We must be aware and discerning of those who may not be what they initially look like. As Paul warned the Corinthians:
“For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.”
~II Corinthians 11:13-15
Jesus warned of wolves in sheep’s clothing and here Paul is warning us that sometimes false teachers disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Satan is the master of deception, falsehood, pretenses, and manipulation. So it is no difficult thing for him and his followers to assume many disguises. They can easily hide their true nature and pass undetected into the ranks of ignorant Christians, wreaking havoc and leading many astray over time.
However, the disguises of Satan and his co-horts are not perfect. They are easily laid bare and made transparent by the Holy Spirit. This is why it is so crucial to be walking in the Spirit. For if the Spirit is actively working and dwelling within us, we will have eyes to see through the many disguises and lies of the enemy. We will be able to recognize immediately the true from the false, the disguise from the real, and the servants of righteousness from the false teachers. And we will not be easily swayed by the lies, manipulations, and falsehoods of Satan. Rather, we’ll be able to reveal him for who he really is and point out the disguised evil to our fellow believers.
Therefore, we must be wise, we must be observant, and we must be careful. For on this fallen earth, evil is disguised as many things and is seeking to gain unfettered access to many areas in our lives, thinking, worldview, and Christian walk. So beware of evil in disguise!
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing ut inwardly are ravenous wolves.”
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