Once a person has invested blood, sweat, tears and money into religious deception, he may be too embarrassed or too stubborn to admit he has been taken. Our hearts are where our treasure has gone. Our vested interest helps us keep the blinders on. We often only “see” what we want to see. The Bible presents a complex picture in regard to deception and assures us that God holds both the deceiver and the deceived accountable.
In the first chapter of the book of Zephaniah, the Lord charges and convicts both the people and the corrupt leaders they followed. Lamentations:2:14 indicates the same:
“Your prophets have seen for you false and deceptive visions; They have not uncovered your iniquity, to bring back your captives, but have envisioned for you false prophecies and delusions.”
It seems that for many complex reasons, one of which is the spurious idea of ongoing revelation (along with a diminished view of the sufficiency of the Bible), many people are predisposed to credulity. That is, they are gullible and likely ready to believe anything even on very slight evidence or sometimes with no evidence at all. Testimonials and dramatic stories sell (Fisher, “The Quarterly Journal,” Vol. 20, No. 3).