April 8, 2019
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When I was a kid, I used to like to put on shows for the other kids in the neighborhood. Hey, wait a minute, am I still doing shows for the kids in the neighborhood? Anyway, I bought a couple of cheap books on magic back then and I had this little kit of magic tricks. Even at my juvenile level, I soon learned that magic wasn't really magic - it was illusions. My beginner magic book talked about how this basic magician skill was called misdirection. The idea is that while you're doing the trick over here you do something that will get everybody looking over there. They said it helped to talk a lot. Well, I knew I'd at least be good at that part.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Deadly Magic."
So one of the secrets of fooling people is to get them looking at something other than what's really going on. Well, that's a tactic employed by someone with a far more sinister intention than some magician or illusionist. This misdirection thing is being used to keep a lot of people from going to heaven; maybe even you or someone you love.
This deadly strategy is revealed in our word for today from the Word of God in 2 Corinthians 4:4. The devil here is called "the god of this age." And it says, "The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so they cannot see the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ." Satan doesn't really want you, or anyone, to see who Jesus really is and what Jesus could really do to light up your life. So he blinds you. He keeps you from seeing Jesus, because if you ever really give yourself to Jesus, the devil has lost you forever. And if you ever got a good look at him, you would probably want him in your life.
Of course, few people are going to knowingly follow the devil or cooperate with his plans to have them in hell forever. So Satan works his deadly magic of getting us to look at something other than Jesus, "Look over here!" - anything other than Jesus.
He may be trying that blinding, misdirecting strategy on you. Again, he doesn't care what you focus on, as long as it is not Jesus. So maybe the deceiver's got you focused on Christians, instead of Christ; those hypocrites, the professed Christians who've hurt you, the inconsistencies of the Church. But that isn't Jesus...and Jesus is the issue. Or maybe the devil's got you all wrapped up in your religion, even a religion that's all about Jesus. He doesn't care as long as you're depending on your religion that makes you miss Jesus.
Maybe the deceiver's blinding you by getting you focused on personal spirituality, or a career that's keeping you too busy for God. Maybe he's got you looking at your pain, your past, your family, a love relationship, the fine points of theology, a sin you can't let go of. Satan will use anything to keep your eyes off Jesus; to keep you from getting to that cross where God's only Son paid the awful price for your sin where you can finally face the sin of your life, be forgiven of the sin of your life, and receive the guarantee of being in heaven forever.
But today, right now, Jesus is coming to you where you are, reaching out His hand, and offering you His awesome love. The moment you die, you will know that the only thing that really mattered was what you did with Jesus. But then it will be too late to change it. But today, you can still open your heart to Him. Today you can finally turn your eyes to Jesus.
Look, wherever your gaze has been before, let this be the day when you in your heart walk up to that cross and say, "Jesus, what you're doing here is for me. And I am yours." If you're ready to belong to this One who loves you more than anybody ever could, I want to ask you to go to our website. You'll find there the information that will help you be sure you belong to Him. The website is ANewStory.com. I hope you'll check it out as soon as you can today.
Satan has desperately been trying to get you to look at anything but Jesus so he can have you forever. But today you can finally see the light he's been trying to keep you from for so long, because this is your Jesus-day!