Lucia's Blog: WAYS SATAN MAY SEEK TO DESTROY US
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Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Thursday, June 11, 2020

WAYS SATAN MAY SEEK TO DESTROY US


"Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil... Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.  Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness,  and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.  With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints." 
 Ephesians 6:11-18



The early Reformers in Europe, as well as the pioneers of the American churches, prayed fervently for God's help against the invisible hosts of evil. They believed unabashedly in the devil and lived their lives as a battle against his evil influences. Just because they are invisible does not make them imaginary nor does it make us superstitious to acknowledge their existence. Let's have a serious Bible discussion of Satan and his activities.

Satan seems to know us well.  He is an expert, knowing our strengths and weaknesses.  He is the serpent, the adversary, the evil one, the persecutor, the prince of darkness, the ruler of this world, and the great dragon.  And when you are a follower of Christ, he hates you with a passion.  He is like a roaring lion prowling about seeking to destroy us.  He finds delight in our weaknesses.  This is his target.  Many times he targets those who are leaders by attacking their strengths, the areas they have built upon as well as the principle qualities they promote best.  
"Therefore let him who thinks he stands take HEED lest he fall."  I Corinthians 10:12

Satan is astute and has many devices.  He usually goes for the citadel rather than the tiny cracks in the wall.  We need to learn to be more astute than he is, being on the alert and standing firm to resist him so that he will flee from us.  We cannot afford to be naive for a moment!  We must consider his evil ways and be equipped with the armor of God to fight back.


I.  SATAN'S EVIL WAYS THAT DESTROY US:

Satan fiercely seeks us out, his weak prey, like a roaring lion to utterly destroy us.  Satan, our adversary, wants to destroy those who are doing a good work for Christ's sake, those who are faithful and are being used in service to God for His glory.  He hates them and wages war against those who are striving to live their lives for Christ, walking in righteousness.  Indeed, his primary purpose is to destroy, discourage, and bring shame upon us.  He will use all of his evil weapons against God's faithful children. 

That is why we must become aware, being on guard, standing firm in Christ with all prayer to resist him.  However, I am confident that he can do nothing to us other than what God allows him.  He still has the power to prowl and attack us fiercely.  His goal is to take us away from God's Word and love. He can do that only if we give him an open door.  He will do everything in his power to discourage and sway us away from God and His ways.  He is eager to persecute all those who desire to live godly (2 Tim. 3:12).  His main goal is to attack our faith and our joy. Therefore, let us take heed and be on the alert!!

We have an enemy who is real, and we need to be watchful!  We cannot afford to be careless or lazy. Satan is the author of most of our troubles, cares, and persecutions.  Even so, we must not allow him to intimidate us.  I am determined not to let him win!!  

We must become fully aware that although Satan can put sinful suggestions into our hearts, they are merely suggestions, and we must not yield or give in.  We all have to face these illicit suggestions, but we must be wise about what to do with them.  We must choose wisely and meditate on the Word of God and prayer, on what to do with those suggestions rather than make plans to do evil.  We must try to get those evil thoughts or suggestions out of our mind and not act upon them at all!

Let's consider some of his evil ways:
  • He loves to slander our God making us doubt His goodness and destroying our faith, Genesis 3:4-5
  •  He tempts us to pretend to be more spiritual than we are, Acts 5:3; Joh 8:44
  • He corrupts our minds and loves to steer us away from the simplicity and purity of the Gospel of Christ, 2 Corinthians 11:3
  • He hinders the success of the Gospel by putting obstacles in the way and making the Truth hard to understand.  He snatches the Truth away,  I Thes. 2:18; Matt. 13:19.  
  • He fights us to defeat whatever progress the Word of God makes in us, Eph. 6:12
  • He may tempt us into committing adultery by encouraging one of the spouses to neglect the intimacy of the marriage bed, I Cor. 7:5This is an area where he makes leaders in the church stumble.  This shipwrecks the Bride of Christ and Her spiritual well being. 
  • He loves to afflict us with thorns in the flesh, 2 Cor. 12:7
  • He may smite us with physical illness, Lk. 13:16; Job 2:7.  
  • He loves to blind the eyes of those whom we love that don't know the Gospel by instilling doubt, keeping them from seeing the glory of our Lord Jesus2 Cor. 4:4
  • He hinders many from coming to God in obedience through faith by enslaving them to sin, Gal. 4:8
  • He tries to disable the effectiveness of the Word of God in us through confusion, discouragement, and despair, 2 Cor. 4:8-9
  • He sows tares through false doctrines and false teachers to create disunity in the church, Mt. 13:38-39; 2 Cor. 11:13-15
  • He leads many into embracing false doctrine and compromising what is sound, I Tim. 4:1-3.  
  • He persecutes those who want to live godly, Rev. 2:10
  • He tempts us to do evil, Matt. 4:1; I Thess. 3:5.  
  • He uses pride to destroy us, I Peter 5:6-8.  
  • He slanders us before God, Rev. 12:10.  
  • He may ask God's permission to sift us, Lk. 22:31
  • He may use the power of suggestion to keep us from doing the will of God, Matt. 16:21-23.

So with all these warnings about Satan's ways, how do we stop him from causing so much damage and misery?  How do we attack him?  How can one stand firm and resist him so that he will flee? Well, the answer to these questions is found in the Word of God.  The Word of God urges Christians not to be naive about his schemes, 2 Cor. 2:11To defeat Satan, we must submit to God, James 4:7.  We must be sober and remain alert, giving him no opportunity, Eph. 4:27Jas. 4:7I Peter 5:8; and finally we must hate him and all sin, Psalm 97:10; Jude 23; 2 Peter 2:10.


II.   HOW CAN WE AS CHRISTIANS DEFEND OURSELVES AGAINST THIS POWERFUL ENEMY?

Consider the following suggestions from the Word of God that would help us to overcome our adversary the devil:


  • We must put on our battle armor:  We cannot afford to be naive about Satan's wicked devices.  Indeed, our conflict with him is a spiritual one.  Therefore, we must consider his evil ways and be equipped with the whole armor of God to fight back.  Ephesians 6:10-18 provides us with a list of these protections and arms for battle:  
    • truth.
    • Righteousness.
    • Peace.
    • Faith.
    • salvation
    • God's infallible Word and
    • Prayer.  

If we put on this spiritual armor, we will be able to resist our adversary, the devil, and he will flee from us (James 4:7).  How do you suppose our Lord and Savior overcame Satan's temptations in Matthew 4 With the Word of God.  Jesus quoted Scripture on every occasion that Satan tempted Him.  Now, if we are ignorant of the Word of God, we will not be able to overcome Satan's wiles and temptations.  Most likely, we will give in to his temptations since we don't know what God demands of us.  When we do not know the Word of God, we won't completely know and understand the difference between right and wrong.  Thus, we will be an easy target for Satan.  On the other hand, if we are fully saturated with the knowledge of the Word of God, taking courage to keep pressing on, Satan will have no chance to defeat us. You may rest assured!

  • We must remember that although God will allow Satan to tempt us, He will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can endure (I Cor. 10:13).  
"No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation, He will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it."  

Remember this comforting promise always!  This verse also restates that man is responsible for his actions or choices.  God will never put us (Christians) in a position of temptation which we cannot handle.
  • We must remember that we have an advocate, Jesus Christ, our Lord, even though we have Satan as the "accuser of the brethren" (Rev. 12:10).  Jesus, our advocate, is standing with us, is pleading our case, is protecting us from all evil, and is refusing to forsake us (I John 2:1).  How comforting are these words to my soul!!!  Our Savior understands well what it is like to be tempted by Satan since He Himself was tempted by the enemy.  Therefore, He is interceding for us (Hebrews 7:25).  He is on our side and wants to remain faithful to us if we are faithful to Him, walking in the Light "as He Himself is in the Light."  (I John 1:7)
  • We must never forget that victory is within our grasp, and we must not let go.  Satan knows that he is going to lose at the end.  Therefore, let us make sure that we keep pressing on, and never give up when the way gets tough, and wrong seems so strong.  Let us heed the Lord's words of advice, 
"Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak."  (Matt. 26:41)

So if we faithfully arm ourselves with these four Bible truths, we will surely overcome our adversary, the devil.


CONCLUSION:
"Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom."  

All Christians are involved in combat with a powerful and deceptive enemy, and we must be alert.   The apostle Peter warns us about this big enemy in I Peter 5:8.  Therefore, we must stand firm and not let him intimidate us.  We must realize who our enemy is and learn his tactics of warfare.  He is dangerous!  We must acknowledge his power and devices.  He is a crafty snake!

Satan is the roaring lion encircling the flock to see if he can make the sheep stray away from the protection of the shepherd and the flock.  He is always prowling about, looking for an open door to attack and discourage us.  His main goal is to devour or destroy us completely.  Therefore, we must be watchful or vigilant and not be ignorant of his devices.

Today, many characterize Satan as a toothless lion that can only roar but cannot harm.  This is dangerous!  Because Satan does not intend just to scare us.  He means to destroy us and take us to the "lake of fire" with him.  Let us pay attention to the Bible warnings about him!  

Satan and his ministers of evil (those angels who rebelled against God) want to attack our faith and our desire to obey the Lord.  Our struggle is not fleshly but rather spiritual, against spiritual forces of wickedness in high places (Eph. 6:10).  Hence, we must put on our spiritual armor and stand firm to defeat him.  How do we resist him?   By submitting to God, drawing near to him, and purifying our hearts with His Word (James 4:7-8).  

We must always consider that Satan is patient and not easily discouraged, no matter how many times we turn him down.  He does not give up!  Remember what Luke 4:13 says, "And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time."  Satan attacked Jesus with various temptations during His time in the wilderness.  And although he was not successful, he certainly did not give up on Jesus.  He is back when another opportunity presents itself.  

Remember that Satan and his demons believe in God, heaven, and hell.  Notice what James wrote:  "You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder" (James 2:19).  They tremble because they know the eternal suffering that awaits them.  Satan is always working (day and night).  He knows his time is limited and that he has much to accomplish with his wicked plans.  We read of this in Job 1:7.
"The LORD said to Satan, 'From where have you come?' Satan answered the LORD and said, 'From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.'"

Therefore, we must be on the alert and put on the whole armor of God to withstand in the evil day and stand firm against Satan's attacks to our faith.  The armor of God includes "defensive weapons," which are the Truth, Righteousness, the Gospel of Christ, our Faith, and our Salvation.  The armor of God also includes "offensive weapons," which are the Sword of the Gospel and Prayer, Eph.. 6:11-18. These are the only measures of war that we can take to stand firmly against him and win.  

"For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but AGAINST principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of WICKEDNESS in the heavenly places."  Ephesians 6:12

May we stand on a firm foundation of faith, the knowledge of God, and His Word that we may be saved from Satan's wicked devices.  May our Lord help us to put on His whole armor that we may be able to withstand in the evil day and stand firm in our faith.  May we submit to God and resist the devil so that he will flee from us.  May we never surrender to Satan but rather dedicate our lives to God's service with zeal. May we be always vigilant with all prayer that we may not enter into temptation.  May we never forget that victory is within our grasp, and we must not let go.  


Luci

1 comment :

  1. Rebuke satan in the name of our MIGHTY GOD JESUS CHRIST our HEAD. AMEN.

    ReplyDelete