Summary: The world system and all who live by it apart are deluded by both the devil and their own depraved minds. They believe they have everything figured out and can live without the intervention of God Almighty. Scripture proves otherwise.
The apostle Paul told the church at Corinth that there is a time to put away childish things and assume the maturity and responsibility expected of an adult or mature young person (1 Corinthians 13:11). The time comes for everyone to grow up and realize that the world and all you know does not revolve around you, nor cares if what you say or think about a situation gets you somehow "offended" or "bent out of shape" and you go on a social media tirade to complain about it. Childish behavior is not only tolerated here in America, but it demands that we bend to its point of view or suffer the consequences in one form or another. This is immaturity at its worst within the mental and emotional realm. It is a dangerous form of delusion that will end up crippling if not destroying the mind, the body, and the soul.
Common sense as well as the Bible shows that this world, no matter how optimistic or hopeful one's outlook on life might be, is not going as it should. Even the most skeptical among us will have to admit that what we see, hear, and experience cannot have begun in such a dismal and reckless state. Somewhere on the road of history, something went wrong in our development and character, and we have exchanged potential, goodness, nobility, and foresight into a cesspool of adversity, heartache, confusion, and just plain evil behavior. We can place the blame on our "evolutionary development" but cannot explain the degenerate lack of moral and ethical standards we should now possess and have brought to a level of brilliance over time. Darwin and his cronies forgot to put the concept of absolute right and wrong into the DNA of our "ancestors" whom artists and scientists portray as a cross between a trained chimpanzee and Fred Flintstone. It seems to me that skeptical anthropologists as well as many man-centered egotistical scientists have made us believe that we are a bunch of "yabba-dabba dorks" with no real sense of why we are even here and what difference we make in the progression of civilization.
What I am pointing out is that when people throw God out of their lives, plans, thoughts and deeds and ignore the offer of salvation given to us through the Lord Jesus Christ, they delude themselves with every kind of excuse or lame reason for not wanting to submit to Him. They think that in their own minds and actions, they will be able
to somehow make everything right with whatever deity might be lurking in the afterlife, if they believe in it at all. We will accept any method we can to make life bearable and tranquil as long as it does not involve God or what He demands of us. Ironically, it is this kind of delusional behavior that is mentioned in the Word of God (Romans 1:18-23) and I will use His Word to show the types of delusional behavior people generate for themselves as it applies to life and the life beyond.
1) The first instance of delusional behavior was initiated in the minds of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, the perfect paradise where all was peaceful, tranquil, and they had everything they could ever want, including a pure, loving relationship with God. There was just one place in the Garden where it was off limits, and to go against God's decree would mean death and disfellowship. Read the story and you will see that despite the blessings they had, the serpent (Satan) convinced them that it was not enough to obey God, but that He was holding out on them by not giving them the ability to be as God on an equal level. Satan had them believing that God was not being truthful with them and really wouldn't carry out His decree for just a moment or two of carnal pleasure on their part, right? We all know how that turned out. Sinful behavior does not and never has brought anyone fulness of life, and we have paid the price of rebellion and sin since then, becoming enemies of God (Genesis 3:5-6; Psalm 58:3; Matthew 15:8; Ephesians 4:18).
2) We can be deluded into thinking that our nationality and citizenship is the key to salvation. It was not too long ago that most citizens of America considered themselves Christians simply because they lived in a country that was based on Judeo-Christian principles (almost all the Founding Fathers were Christian or had a strong faith in God despite what some history textbooks have said). This concept is nothing new, as the people of Israel thought that since they had been chosen by God to be a blessing to the world (Genesis 12:1-4) over the centuries, surely they were in good steads with Him even if their lifestyle was as reprobate as the pagan Gentiles in the land. The Pharisees believed that their law, observances, rituals, and traditions were acceptable in God's sight and that they were assured of salvation. John the Baptist corrected this mindset (Matthew 3:9) and opened many people's eyes to the fact that citizenship in a country is no guarantee of citizenship in heaven, which is only made possible by the mercy and grace of God (Acts 4:12; Ephesians 2:8-9).