He was good at it in the Garden, and he has honed his skills even more since then. He knows God’s Word, and He knows how to twist it to make it sound just like “we” want it to sound. He knows our frame, and that we all are frail. He also knows not many of us live up to our name “Christians”, meaning “Christ followers”, or “little Christ’s”. He is well aware that most of us attend church, small group and pray occasionally, but that our daily, intimate walk with Christ is lacking.
Because of that – we try to live life in our own strength, and follow our own wisdom and reason. On any given day, we may not be filled with, and walking in the Spirit, so (by definition) we are walking in the flesh. The Word is very clear when it says – Galatians 5:16 – But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. Implied by this verse is that the opposite is also true – if we do NOT walk by (in) the Spirit, we WILL gratify the desires of the flesh.
At any point in our day, we are either walking in the flesh, or walking in the Spirit. We are either thinking about, and pursuing the things of God, or the things of…us. We all know this truth in our head – but sadly, few of us deliberately walk this way. So, our enemy, the prowling lion, is sneaking around waiting for an opening. He is lurking. He is watching. He is ready for the slightest crack to appear in our armor.
He also springs into action. He uses his age-old lure that works the majority of the time when it is cast – opportunity. He brings about an opportunity to work with a fun-loving, attractive, ever-encouraging colleague of the opposite sex. He provides opportunity for your spouse to spend more time than he/she should with a close friend or neighbor also of the opposite sex. The opportunity to be alone with your computer, at a time when intimacy has been missing in your relationships.
There are multitudes of opportunities to get angry, withhold forgiveness, lust, lie, cheat, deceive, etc. – almost every day. Along with opportunity, he also offers his clever, deceiving, logical, diabolical thoughts as well. He whispers to us that we deserve, we owe ourselves, no one will know, it doesn’t really matter, just this once, it’s not that big a deal…..barrage of rationale that is time tested to draw up even closer to making the wrong choice. He is good at it.
He tried it on Eve (and Adam) and it worked well. He tried it on Jesus, and it didn’t work at all.
Yes, Satan is a pro. He is the “father of lies” and rejoices when he causes little Christ’s to stumble and fall. As we have said before, the battle field is in our mind. We have to know the truth, contained in God’s Word, speak it and walk by it every single day. There is no day off. Jesus knew that, and we better know and embrace it too. We are living in a war zone, and have a diabolical enemy who hates us, our marriage, our kids, our legacy, etc.
Two key verses we all need to know, and live by:
Hebrews 5:14 – But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.
2 Corinthians 10:5 – We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,
Are we training our senses to discern the good influences (thoughts) from the evil? Do we readily recognize and deal with them?
When we hear his cunning, poison-filled thoughts/ideas – do we immediately recognize them for the crock they are, take them captive by speaking the Truth concerning those suggestions – and gaining victory?
Or – do we amble along, head down, doing our daily tasks, never thinking about what we’re thinking about? Are we setting ourselves up for failure by not deliberately, daily choosing to walk with our amazingly powerful and loving Father?
Again – our enemy WILL provide opportunities. We, however, still get to make the choices.
Praying for all of us. The war is real.