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Is God Deceptive?

June 30, 2015

Non-Muslims always bring up the topic of Allah swt being the “best of deceivers”. In response I say that God of the Bible also deceivers:

Jeremiah 4:10 Then I said, “Ah, Sovereign LORD, how completely you have DECEIVED (nasha) this people and Jerusalem by saying, ‘You will have peace,’ when the sword is at our throats.”

1 Kings 22:20-22 20 And the LORD said, ‘Who will entice Ahab into attacking Ramoth Gilead and going to his death there?’ “One suggested this, and another that. 21 Finally, a spirit came forward, stood before the LORD and said, ‘I will entice him.’ 22 ” ‘By what means?’ the LORD asked. ” ‘I will go out and be a LYING SPIRIT in the mouths of all his prophets,’ he said. ” ‘You will succeed in enticing him,’ said the LORD. ‘GO AND DO IT.’ 23″Now therefore, behold, the LORD has put a DECEIVING spirit in the mouth of all these your prophets; and the LORD has proclaimed disaster against you.”

The  response I got from one Christian is : ”

Jeremiah 4:10. In the passage God is sending Jeremiah to proclaim destruction upon Israel. Israel’s King was playing between Egypt and Babylon. Jeremiah is asking the LORD why He allowed false prophets to speak, to give them a false sense of security. God was allowing the pride of the Israelites to swell…THEN sent Jeremiah to speak, so they would SEE that what Jeremiah spoke would come to pass and then they would know Jeremiah was the TRUE prophet of God…The Israelites only wanted to hear good things…  False prophets ALWAYS told the Israelites what they WANTED to hear…It was always the TRUE prophet of God that would tell them the TRUTH, even if that truth was hard to swallow and accept. God did not deceive…He ALLOWED these false prophets to lie….God allows us all to sin. He wants US to make the choice NOT to.What good is it if God forces us to obey Him. Is that TRUE worship of Him, out of love, or forced obedience with no choice? That is not love.
My Response:
Jeremiah 4:10, in the commentary of this verse,John Gill says that Jeremiah complains to God that He deceived him by allowing the false prophets to make false prophesies. You explained it in same way as well probably from same commentary. But the point is, even though it was the false prophets who deceived, it was God who ALLOWED it. And when Jeremiah complained, the Lord only replied in confirmation of the the judgement. So basically God allowed them to lie which means allowed them to sin and deceive.In different commentaries of the bible pertaining to the verse in Jeremiah, I read that its difficult verse to explain because it show deceit of God and also a prophet charging God of deceit. For this, some translators have tried to use synonyms to lighten the effect.
Coffman’s Commentaries say:“We have called this the most difficult verse in the chapter; because, as it is written, we find it very difficult either to believe or to interpret. As it stands, it would have to be based upon the oriental conception that everything that happens is actually accomplished by Jehovah.” There is no other way in interpreting this except to say that God allowed people to lie and deceive and then He can delude people to people to believe in these lies – another deception. No doubt the deception begins with God Himself because of Him allowing it when He could easily NOT allow. Question is, why does God allow the lies and deceits? And the answer simply is – its a choice given to the people. What good is it if God forces us to obey Him – asks the debater.Now see this verse in 2 Thessalonians 2:11 which says “For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie”. So God DELUDES powerfully to MAKE them believe the lie. Is this not a deception? Its not just ALLOWING them to lie but also deluding the people to believe in that lie. Why? To answer this we have to see the verses before that:2 Thessalonians 2:9-10 “The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved”.

Continuing … verse 12 “and so that all will be CONDEMNED who have not believed the truth but have
delighted in wickedness.”

Its the punishment for lying and believing in lies. When people start believing in lies and spreading them, then God puts them in a state of delusion which hardens their hearts (according to the commentary by Dr. Grant C. Rischison). And this explanation is also exactly same in Quran where Allah says He will harden the hearts of sinners and disbelievers. This is the cause of the sin. God has made the truth and falsehood very clear and now man has the choice to accept or reject:

“Say, ‘The truth is from your Lord’: Let him who will believe, and let him who will, reject (it): for the
wrong-doers We have prepared a Fire whose (smoke and flames), like the walls and roof of a tent, will hem them in” (Quran 18:29)

“Yet the LORD hath not given you an heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear, unto this day.”
(Deuteronomy 29:4)

“Ultimately, God will give non-believers what they want.” – Dr. Grant.

People can lie and tell truth. God allows both. People who choose to lie, will see the consequences. They are condemned says the Bible. How? He will plan the best way to punish the deceivers. 2 Timothy 3:13 say “while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived”. Deceivers will see consequences by being deceived themselves. Their deception will hit back at them. Who hits back? God, of course. In other words, they will be punished.

And this brings me to the point in the Quran 3:54 where it says of the disbelievers: “And they schemed, but Allah planned. And Allah is the best of planners.”

Just as false prophets schemed with lies, so did the disbelievers in the Quran and Allah allowed that when He could have easily stopped. But this was choice given to them. And Allah makes the best plans (consequences/punishment) for those who lie and deceive. So you see what the Bible says about God giving choices and consequences are no different to the ones given in the Quran. Allah is the best to teach the liars and deceivers a lesson. Everything is accomplished by the Will of God and He does it according to His Plans and He is indeed the Best to plan.

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