The less spiritual and self-denying the doctrines presented, the greater the favor with which people receive them. Satan is ready to supply what people want, and he palms off deception in the place of truth. This is how the papacy gained its power over the minds of so many. And by rejecting the truth because it involves a cross, Protestants are following the same path. All who study convenience and popular opinion, so that they will not be out of step with the  world, will be left to receive “destructive heresies” in place of truth (2 Peter 2:1). Those who look with horror on one deception will eagerly receive another.*
The lying wonders of spiritualism are among Satan’s most successful agencies. When people reject the truth, they become easy targets for deception.
Another error is the doctrine that denies the deity of Christ, claiming that He had no existence before He was born into this world. This theory contradicts Jesus’ own statements about His relationship with the Father and His pre-existence. It undermines faith in the Bible as a revelation from God. If people reject the testimony of Scripture about the deity of Christ, it is useless to argue with them. No argument, however strong, could convince them. None who hold this error can have a true understanding of Christ or of God’s plan for our redemption.
Still another error is the belief that Satan does not exist as a personal being, that the Bible uses that name simply to represent people’s evil thoughts and desires.
Some teach that the second advent of Christ is His coming to each individual at death. This is a deception to divert minds from Jesus’ personal coming in the clouds of heaven. By this means, Satan has been saying, “Behold, he is in the secret chambers” (see Matthew 24:23-26 KJV), and many have been lost by accepting this deception.
Again, many scientists claim that there can be no real answer to prayer, because this would be a violation of law—a miracle, and miracles have no existence. The universe, they say, is governed by fixed laws, and God Himself does nothing against these laws. So they represent God as limited by His own laws—as if divine laws could exclude divine freedom.
Did not Christ and His apostles work miracles? The same Savior is as willing to listen to the prayer of faith today as when He walked visibly on the earth. The natural cooperates with the supernatural. It is a part of God’s plan to grant us, in answer to the prayer of faith, what He would not give if we did not ask in faith.
The Landmarks of the Word
False doctrines among the churches remove landmarks that the Word of God has established. Few people stop when they have rejected just one truth. The majority set aside one after another of the principles of truth, until they reject the Christian faith altogether.
The errors of popular theology have driven many people to skepticism. It is impossible for them to accept doctrines that outrage their sense of justice, mercy, and kindness. Since the churches say that these are the teachings of the Bible, such people refuse to acknowledge it as the Word of God.
Many people look distrustfully at the Word of God because it rebukes and condemns sin. Those who are unwilling to obey try to overthrow its authority. Many reject religion in order to justify their neglect of duty. Others, who love ease too much to accomplish anything that requires self-denial, acquire a reputation for superior wisdom by criticizing the Bible.
Many feel it is a virtue to stand on the side of unbelief, skepticism, and irreligion. But underneath an appearance of honesty they act from self-confidence and pride. Many delight in finding something in the Scriptures to puzzle the minds of others. Some at first reason on the wrong side just because they love a controversy. But once they have openly expressed unbelief, they then join with the ungodly.