Error, indeed, is never set forth in its naked deformity, lest, being thus exposed, it should at once be detected. But it is craftily decked out in an attractive dress, so as, by its outward form, to make it appear to the inexperienced (ridiculous as the expression may seem) more true than the truth itself. - Irenaeus
A counterfeit is the most sincere form of flattery for it copies something genuine, but then for the sake of gaining an advantage and deceiving it is passed off as the original. For the past two thousand years the gospel has been attacked by many counterfeiters who have dreamed up something which might sound good to the ears, look good to the eyes, and even bring some form of temporary reward or satisfaction, but in the end when put to the test it ultimately fails and the poor soul who bought it is left in despair. Which gospel and which Jesus have you received? You may have been insulted by someone who presented the truth, or you may be embarrassed to endorse something that is so old fashion, but would you rather be deceived? Think of all the religions in the past two thousand years that have dreamed up a new revelation, published a new book by supposed prophets such as Muhammad, Joseph Smith, etc. that claim to update or improve on the the original biblical stories.
Growing up in a small town, I ventured into the perilous and confusing arena of the occult. Later, as a Christian, I was thrust headlong into a much broader view of religion through Biblical apologetics and the life experience of missionary outreach among a variety of denominational traditions. In effort to understand and meet the needs of people from different cultures and religious backgrounds my wife, Peggy, and I have always tried to find some form of practical application to what we have studied. In 1989 we traveled with a medical missionary team made up of an assortment of Christian denominations to Haiti with Peggy serving as the dentist. To get a glimpse at the mind of Islam we listened to the Muslims and Christians debate at “Speaker’s Corner” in London’s Hyde Park in 1988. On the Alaska/Canadian coast we have logged thousands of miles on boats exploring remote towns and villages. Several road trips across the United States put us in Mormon fundamentalist towns where polygamy is still a part of that “old time” religion. We have been to Jehovah’s Witness conventions, Bahai Faith meetings, Muslim Mosques, Buddhist temples and Mormon testimony meetings.