Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 21, 2017
Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made. Genesis 3:1
I’ve always thought that there are two camps when it comes to views about the devil: one group sees Satan under every rock; the other thinks he is kind of a cartoon character, so they don’t take him seriously at all. He’s that guy with horns and a pitchfork that you saw on Looney Tunes when you were a kid, right?
While I’m not convinced the devil is directly responsible for everything, (we can get ourselves into trouble just because of our own sin nature, thank you very much) the Bible does say that we are in a spiritual battle with forces we can’t see.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12)
There are many ways that our Adversary attempts to persuade us to sin or turn away from God. And there is one way that we often don’t think about: he uses the influence of those who are close to us or close to us in proximity. Now, don’t go telling your friends or mate that they are from the devil, but take Job’s life as an example. Do you remember what Satan’s goal was for Job? He wanted Job to “curse God.” And do you remember what Job’s wife said to Job after he had lost his flocks and everything he owned and was sitting in ashes scraping himself with a piece of pottery? She said, “Are you still maintaining your integrity? Curse God and die” (Job 2:9)!
Don’t you wonder what was going on behind the scenes in Job’s wife’s mind as she watched Job suffer? Don’t you wonder who was influencing her to tell Job to turn against God and curse Him? Don’t you wonder who Job’s wife had been listening to? We may not wrestle directly with flesh and blood, but flesh and blood can definitely be influenced to attempt to draw us into sin. Keep this truth in mind. Remember that seductions of your Adversary are often subtle and they can come from unlikely sources.
“…he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).
PrayerLord, please give me a balanced view of spiritual warfare. You talk about it in your Word, so I know it’s real. Please help me to live knowing that I have an Adversary, but help me also keep focused on you. Make me mindful of the devil’s tactics so that I will not be outwitted. Amen.
ApplicationPray and ask God to make you mindful of what you learned today as you interacted with others.
Related ReadingJohn 14:30; Luke 22:31; 1 Timothy 4:1-2
Post/Tweet todayThe seductions of our Adversary are often subtle and they can come from unlikely sources. #WisdomHunters #subtleseductions
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