Are you Discerning? Having or revealing keen insight and good judgment, able to make or detect effects of great subtlety; sensitive, quick to understand. How capable are you of Discernment? The trait of judging wisely and objectively, perception of that which is obscure, delicate discrimination, the cognitive condition of someone who understands, and the ability to make good judgments. For your own protection, and perhaps the protection of your own family members, would you like to increase your abilities in this area, especially along the lines of deceptive tactics and characteristics that others may use against you? Have you ever been taken to the cleaners?
In our culture and society a large percentage of people are "out for number one", and will run over others in an effort to obtain their selfish claim. This is a real issue in everyday life, and it includes those who are looking for a meaningful relationship as well. Let's be honest, there are men who are more interested in getting into a woman's pants than anything else, that is the only thing on their agenda. By contrast, there are women who have the same agenda, (although a lower percentage), and/or women who are looking for someone with money. Regardless, any of the issues above will only supply a poor foundation for a relationship because they are self-centered. Love is intently looking to meet the needs of others, not of oneself.
Many businesses are looking at how they get over on you, how they can open your wallet or checkbook, not at what you really need. By the same token, many politicians are only out to get re-elected, not to do the job they were elected to do. Selfishness runs across the board on a daily basis because a great many people have misguided objectives. So how can you begin to understand and obtain a clearer perception of what the motivations of others might be? Proverbs 4:7 NLT says; Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgment.
How do you start? Proverbs 23:23 says; Buy the truth and do not sell it; get wisdom, discipline and understanding. And Proverbs 18:15 says; The heart of the discerning acquires knowledge; the ears of the wise seek it out. Simply, wisdom comes from God, and it is in His words, read the bible. Look, you don't know what you don't know, so don't try to act like you do, Look at Jeremiah 33:3; Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.
Let's dig into an area of the bible that tells us some good indications of misguided or even malicious intentions. 2 Peter 2:1 says; But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies… And in 2 Peter 2:2 it says; Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned. So what do you see already? False teachers who secretly introduce destructive ways and people who follow their shameful immorality. Selfish people leading more selfish people who are oblivious to the downfalls that await them. Consider this for a moment; short term pleasure will lead to long term pain. When you are tempted by someone or something, consider how this "sweet thing" or pleasure might lead to a long term pain.
Folks, you need to understand that your enemies are good at deception, not to give them credit for their evil ways, but they are so good that many don't see what's coming tell it's way too late. 2 Corinthians 11:14; And no wonder, since Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. Deception is defined as a misleading falsehood, (which includes lies and dishonesty), the act of deceiving, an illusory feat; considered magical by naive observers.
Look at what it says in 2 Peter 2:3; And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep. See, the source of their malicious intentions stem from their greedy self centered hearts, it's all about them, and often all about your money. Secondly, what you may have noticed is how they will come to destruction, but they will lead others in the same direction, others who are naive and gullible. Ever heard the phrase; "there's a sucker born every minute", they subscribe to that and intently look for it.
In 2 Peter 2:10 it says; This is especially true of those who follow the corrupt desire of the sinful nature and despise authority. Bold and arrogant, these men are not afraid to slander celestial beings; (Angels). So what might you begin to look for? How about smooth tongues, too good to be true promises, (especially with your money), saying one thing and doing another, denial, irresponsibility, unaccountability, dishonesty, flattery, intimidation, & manipulation to include always downplaying others, (such as their competition). When you are not sure about something, and someone is trying to push you into something is usually a good sign that there is something amiss. Don't buy into something you have not researched, don't vote for something you have not read about. Take the time to do your homework, do not rush into things lest you find an empty pool.
In 2 Peter 2:13-14 it says; They count it pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are blots and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, while they feast with you. They have eyes full of adultery, insatiable for sin. They entice unsteady souls. They have hearts trained in greed. Accursed children! (Think about that). To be more simple, be on the lookout for selfishness, for people with self centered motivations, those with greedy intentions. If they are out to benefit themselves in something, their words and ways will be in alignment with that intention, they will often lie, they will try to get others to go along with their waywardness, they will point their fingers at others in blame, failing to take ownership of their own actions, and they will likely be pushy.
For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of sinful human nature, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. They promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you. (2 Peter 2:18-19). Remember that those short term pleasures often lead to long term pains, a trinket now may be a ditch later. In closing I would like to say that you will find many politicians that are deceptive, businesses who won't let you get away or off the phone without their "pushyness", and men who will say "I love you" just to get over on a lady.
Thy tongue deviseth mischiefs; like a sharp rasor, working deceitfully. You prefer evil to good. You prefer lying to speaking the truth. [Selah] (Psalm 52:2-3)
"A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin." (Proverbs 26:28)
"If a ruler hearken to lies, all his servants are wicked." (Proverbs 29:12)
"And they will deceive every one his neighbour, and will not speak the truth: they have taught their tongue to speak lies, and weary themselves to commit iniquity." (Jeremiah 9:5)
"These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren." (Proverbs 6:16-19)
You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. (John 8:44)
"But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth." (James 3:14)
"Remove from me the way of lying: and grant me thy law graciously." (Psalm 119:29)
Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you. (Proverbs 2:11)