Satan

I’LL BE OKAY

There are Christians in danger!

Believers who are sporadic in spending time with God.

They are inconsistent in feeding on God’s word, and they’re half-hearted in committing themselves to engage in meaningful conversation with God.

The most common excuse is not having enough time. But I believe the real reason is a lack of conviction that carving out time with God is of desperate importance.

Are you a Christians who believe you can afford to miss time with God? Do you think you will be okay walking through the day without equipping your heart and mind with the whole armor of God?

If you think you can afford to go about your day without armoring and strengthening yourself in the Lord, consider these warnings against the trickery and attacks of Satan and his followers:

John 8:44 Jesus calls Satan “a liar and the father of lies”

2 Corinthians 2:11 warns us not to be “outwitted by Satan; for we are not ignorant of his designs”

2 Timothy 2:26 tells us Satan has “snares”

Ephesians 6:11 says he has “schemes”

2 Corinthians 11:14 “Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.”

1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”

Revelation 12:12 “the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!”

Matthew 7:15 In addition to Satan, Jesus adds, “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”

This is the reality you face each day. These are the conditions which constantly swirl about you.

God’s word is emphatic in declaring, “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.” (Ephesians 6:12-13)

If you think you can afford to neglect time with God today and leave your armor behind, then Satan has already been successful in his “lies”, “schemes” and “snares”.

THE ART OF DELUSION

 

Satan’s great weapon is deceit; he is the “father of lies” (John 8:44).

All sin involves delusion of some kind

“I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ”  (2 Corinthians 11:3)

Satan cannot make us sin, but he works very hard to deceive us (with cooperation from our fleshly nature)

He wants to delude us about sin and its fruit

He wants to delude us about what is important and wise for life

He wants to delude us about God: his character and the benefits of being sold out for him

Satan presents the bait and hides the hook

He makes sin look inviting while hiding its poison and God’s judgment

But there is always a hook and to sin always makes us play the fool

We need to remind ourselves of the realities behind every sin

Satan’s real purpose is always to separate us from God

Satan hates us    

Sin hates God       

Every sin will be regretted

Satan shows us only one side of sinful lives

We see the success and pleasures of godless people

Or we hear positive reactions to sinful behaviors

We cannot see the true condition of people’s inner life. People without Christ cannot have peace with God or the peace of God

When we consider what lies ahead for unbelievers and sin, there is nothing to envy

We need to consider the results of life and obedience with the eyes of faith

Satan covers some sins with social acceptability

“If so many people do it, how wrong can it be, and how angry can God be?”

The Bible is clear, God will condemn many

“Wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction and there are many who go in by it” (Matthew 7:13)

We should expect the world to commonly and increasingly pursue what is evil   

“Evil men and impostors will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.” (2 Timothy 3:13)

God acts from his perfection, he’s unaffected by human opinion and practice

Satan portrays God as only love

Instead of being seen as perfectly loving, God is made out to only loving

The Bible portrays God as perfect in all attributes; which includes his justice and holiness

“Consider the goodness and severity of God” (Romans 11:22)

Satan wants to change the size of God and man

He wants us to magnify man and minimize God; to make what men do important and what God does distant

The result is we fear people over God, follow people over God, listen to people over God, and appease people rather than God

We need a clear view of mankind’s true nature and position  

“All flesh is grass, and all its beauty is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades when the breath of the Lord blows on it; surely the people are grass.” (Isaiah 40:6-7)

We obviously need the same concerning God  

“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.” (Isaiah 40:28)

Both of these need to be reinforced regularly

Whenever temptation comes, remind yourself that deceit, failure and regret are in the heart of what is being offered to you

 

THOUGHTS ON MANKIND’S FIRST SIN

Genesis 3:1-6

Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” 

And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’”

But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 

So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.

 

Satan’s Attack

1.  Satan brought God into question. What God had said, was made to be ‘open to discussion’.

2.  Satan accused God’s law as being unreasonable.

3.  Satan inflated Eve’s view of her rights and needs.

4.  Satan pretended he was concerned for Eve’s interests, when his real motivation was to destroy.

5.  Satan planted the seed of sin’s immediate gratification.

6.  Satan omitted the full result of his suggested course.

We should always view temptation as an attack. Satan is a ‘roaring lion seeking to devour’.

 

Eve’s Failure

1.  She took up the self-centered perspective offered.

2.  She did not place the temptation under God’s wisdom: What does God have to say about this?

3.  She did not admit God’s authority over her and everything else.

4.  She did not seek God Himself.

5.  She allowed the temptation to take root (James 1:14-15).

6.  She allowed truth to be experimental;  i.e. to define truth by our experience.

Love for God and trust in Him was not enough for Eve. The same principle is true when we disobey God’s word.


WHAT DOES SATAN WANT?

What does Satan want for your church?

He uses cunning and strategy, and his main weapon is deceit. Jesus warns us that, “there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44)

But with the Apostle Paul, we can say that “we are not ignorant of his designs” (1 Corinthians 2:11).

We should easily recognize these strategies of Satan who hates Christ and wants to harm his Church:

Satan wants us to be impatient with other believers

Satan wants us filled with frustration for the people of our church

Satan wants us to think that our differences with other believers are greater than our bonds in Christ

He doesn’t want us to read Ephesians 4:4-6

“There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism,  one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”

Satan wants us to argue with as fellow church members as possible.

Satan wants us to gossip about the weakness of fellow believers

Satan wants us to give up on one another instead of keep “bearing with one another”

He really doesn’t want us to read any of Ephesians 4

“Walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,  with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (vs 1-3)

Satan wants us to attack the failures that we see in fellow believers

Satan wants us to live disconnected from other church members

Satan wants us to ignore the hurts of fellow believers

He doesn’t want us to read 1 Corinthians 12:24-26

“God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.”

Satan wants us to believe the worst about people in our church

Satan wants us to think that we have loved enough, and to think that we are justified in giving up on loving them more

He doesn’t want us to read 1 Corinthians 13:7-8 

“Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends”

Satan wants us to forget that God deeply loves every believer – that Jesus died for every believer – and that the Holy Spirit lives in every believer

We know what Satan wants – what do you think God wants?

DELUDED: THE GREAT WEAPON

All sin involves deceit of some kind. This is Satan’s great weapon; he is the “father of lies” and “the Deceiver”

“You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” John 8:44

“The great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world” Revelation 12:9

“I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” 2 Corinthians 11:3  

Satan cannot make us sin, but he works very hard to deceive us (with much cooperation from our fleshly nature)

He wants to delude us about sin and its fruit

He wants to delude us about what is important and wise for life

He wants to delude us about God and His absolute rule and His overwhelming faithfulness to us

How do we respond to deceit? We put our faith in the truth!

In Ephesians 6, Paul instructs us to protect ourselves from spiritual attack with the Word of God and our faith in it

 “In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one;  and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (vs16-17)

Biblical faith looking to the truth of God and acting upon it

Biblical faith is to live according to God’s perspective about Himself, the world, and ourselves

Biblical faith sees God as the main character is every situation

Biblical faith builds our life upon what God has said and done

“Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called” 1 Timothy 6:12

To “fight the fight of faith” is to enter the battle of daily life, trusting God and obeying Him

God is most important – so I will worship Him, and turn my heart toward Him

God is the source of wisdom – so I live by on His word

Christ’s Kingdom is the only one that will last – so I serve His will

God is glorious and good – so I trust Him enough to give Him all of my life today

Keep preaching the gospel to yourself, and the lies of the enemy will sound shrill and look foolish