Take Heed That You Are Not Deceived: Derek Prince (Transcript)

Full text of Bible teacher Derek Prince’s sermon titled ‘Take Heed That You Are Not Deceived’ which was delivered in Westminster Chapel, London on September 29, 1990.

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Derek Prince – Bible Teacher

This morning I spoke on: Be Sober. Now I’m going to speak on Be vigilant.

And the proclamation that we have chosen is a prayer along that line. It’s taken from Philippians chapter one, verses nine through eleven. We just changed the words to personalize it.

Philippians 1:9-11: ‘This we pray that our love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that we may approve the things that are excellent, that we may be sincere and without offense, till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God.’ Amen.

Now, I’ve already announced what I’m going to be speaking about: Be vigilant.

‘Be sober, be vigilant’ is taken from 1 Peter, chapter five, I think, verse eight.

This morning I spoke about sobriety in entering into spiritual warfare, being realistic, not having vague or unrealistic attitudes, or using language which is above the level of our experience.


Tonight, I’m talking on Be vigilant, particularly in regard to the many warnings given in the New Testament against being deceived. Almost every passage in the New Testament that relates to the end of the age contains some kind of warning against being deceived.

I’m just going to take two passages from Matthew, chapter 24, from the words of Jesus Himself. He was asked: ‘What will be the sign of Your coming and at the end of the age?’

And when He began to answer, the first thing He did was warn His disciples against being deceived.

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So He said in Matthew 24:4-5: ‘Take heed that no one deceives you, for many will come in My name saying, ‘I am the Messiah’ and will deceive many.’

Now, Jesus is a true Prophet. And the Jewish Encyclopedia records about 40 false messiahs who have come to the Jewish people since the time of Jesus. Perhaps the most famous was Bar Kokhba, and all of them have succeeded in deceiving some part of the Jewish people.

But the warning goes far beyond the Jewish people. And then in the same chapter in verse 23, following…

Matthew 24:23-25: Jesus says, ‘Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah, or there, do not believe it, for false messiahs and false prophets will arise and show great signs and wonders so as to deceive, if possible, even the elect.’

Excuse me, it’ll get better after a while.

‘See, I have told you beforehand.’

So Jesus says, you can’t say I didn’t warn you. And He says, there will arise false prophets and false messiahs, and they will show great signs and wonders so as to deceive, if possible, even the elect or the chosen ones.

There are two important lessons from that.

First of all, that miraculous signs do not necessarily prove that a message is true, because Jesus says they will show great signs and wonders, but they’ll be the deceivers.

You cannot base your assessment of the truth of a message merely on the fact that there were supernatural signs and supernatural experiences. It is extremely dangerous to have that attitude.

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