A Matter of Perception

In recent years various authors have correctly understood that our perceptions govern how we understand ourselves and our world, and that the way we see governs how we behave. Consider Eve.
When the serpent first asked Eve about the forbidden tree she saw the fruit as being synonymous with death. For this reason, although the tree was “in the midst of the garden,” she had obviously taken measures to avoid it. The serpent then changed her perception by feeding her half truths and lies. As a result, Eve then “saw the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise.” Genesis 3:6 Acting upon her new way of seeing the tree, she ate some fruit. Perception led to desire and ultimately action.
Jesus called the devil the father of lies. John 8:44 It would seem that one of his predominant conniving tools involves sowing false ideas, beliefs and promises. Under his dark tutelage, what is truly worthwhile seems to grow old and pale while at the same time his array of offerings appear more and more delectable. For those who accept his evil paradigm shift of what is valuable, it is no wonder that Paul would describe how the aroma of Christ to those who are perishing as being the stench of death. Nor are we surprised to read, “an unspiritual man does not accept the things which come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them because they are spiritually discerned.” 1 Corinthians 2:14
Considering how perceptions influence and ultimately dictate our behavior, it should become abundantly clear:
1) why it is so important to allow God to form our perceptions through our study and meditation upon Scripture and
2) why Satan’s prevalent lies are so pernicious.

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Barry Newton

Married to his wonderful wife Sofia and a former missionary in Brazil, Barry enjoys trying to express old truths in fresh ways. They are the parents of two young men.

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