We are living in the Last Days which we have been warned about would be days full of deception (Matthew 24:4; Mark 13:5; Luke 21:8; 2 Timothy 3:1, 13; 1 Timothy 4:1; Revelation 20:3, 7, 8). Our freedom and protection in these times will be truth (John 8:32; Ephesians 6:14) therefore our highest loyalty must be to truth, the truth of God’s Word. Second Corinthians 13:8 says, “For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.” When Christians do not give their highest allegiance or loyalty to truth they will easily fall prey to deception which leads to compromise. Compromise is always an adjustment to the standard of truth and an adapting down from the standard of truth to something less.
Christians sometimes lose sight of the big picture of the spiritual battle between good and evil as well as their adversary the devil (1 Peter 5:8). An adversary is an opponent and a combatant. We must realize that he is seeking whom he may devour and is against every child of God every day. He opposes God’s purpose and plan for our lives and aside from direct attacks and temptations he will also use deception to hinder us. A great example of this can be seen in Joshua 9 in the story of the Gibeonites (also known as the Hivites) who were enemies in the land of Canaan. When they heard what Joshua had done at Jericho and at Ai, two cities they conquered, the Gibeonites realized they could not overpower Joshua and the people of God. They changed their tactics from open opposition to deception, trickery, and guile. Joshua 9:4 says, “They did work wilily…. (trickery; guile; subtilty; craftiness; deception).” They made themselves appear as though they were from a far country and not people of the land to deceive Joshua into compromising. Joshua was deceived by appearances and adapted down God’s Word that commanded them to destroy the inhabitants of the land. Joshua and the children of Israel were ready for the warfare but not for the wiles of their enemy. They were deceived and then compromised.
If the enemy cannot stop you through warfare he will resort to wiles (deception) to get you to compromise which will hinder your advancement in God’s plan. The devil manipulates the mind and thoughts of a compromising Christian. We must not be ignorant of his devices (2 Corinthians 2:11 devices – thoughts; translated “thought” in 2 Corinthians 10:5 … bringing into captivity every thought…).
There are some common things that seem to be a part of compromise among Christians.
- The danger doesn’t seem great.
- The cost of obedience seems too high and demanding.
- There is a source of personal benefit.
- There is an entry point into a wrong relationship/relating, activity, or involvement.
- There is a failure to deal firmly and definitively with the initial offer to compromise.
- There is a toleration of certain things they formerly did not tolerate.
- The self life (an unyielded will to Jesus’ Lordship) is usually the basis or breeding ground.