Cornerstone Baptist Church, 4930 Old Lohman Rd., Jefferson City, Missouri, 65109

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

"The Lies of Satan" - Devotion

So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. (Genesis 3:6, NKJV)

Decisions have consequences. Genesis 3:6 tells us about a decision that Adam and Eve made that radically changed their lives and all of human history forever.

As they lived in the perfect Garden of Eden God had made for them, they were provided everything they needed. God created them with intellect and will - the will to either choose to obey Him or reject Him. You see, God did not create us as automatons or robots. He wants us to choose Him, to love Him, because we desire to, not because we have no choice.

We see here the first entrance of Satan, the Adversary, in the pages of Scripture. Revelation 20:2 identifies Satan as "that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan. . . " Through the serpent, a creature in the Garden of Eden, Satan tempted Eve and through her, Adam, in all the ways we are tempted today:

1. Appetite - Satan seeks to stir within us the desire to have what we don't have, to feed the physical appetites within us all. Adam and Eve had all they needed to eat in that Garden, but Satan convinced them they needed the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Satan will seek to convince us that what God has provided for us is not enough. The Adversary is always ready to supply something we don't need that will be destructive to our lives.

2. Beauty - Satan makes that which is evil and dangerous appear to be "pleasant to the eyes." Much of what passes for "beautiful" in our world today is only a thin covering that conceals the reality of danger and destruction on the inside. But Satan will try and get us to act in haste to grasp at what we think is beautiful and good to trap us in a life of pain and devastation.

3. Pride - "For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil" (Genesis 3:5, NKJV). Satan's lie to every one of us is that we can "be like God" in our own strength and power. The "serpent of old" seeks to keep us from submitting to God by appealing to our pride and emotions, the feeling that we don't need God. He actually succeeded in convincing Adam and Eve that God was trying to withhold something good from them, when they were living in the midst of a paradise God had created and supplied just for them! Satan is up to his old tricks today, seeking to convince us that with all the blessings of God around us, God is somehow not really on our side or that God does not have our best interests at heart.

Virtually all temptation comes under these three areas. Adam and Eve's decision to disobey God had consequences for them and for the entire human race. All of Creation was altered as sin entered into the human experience (Romans 8:22). The world and the human race is not what God intended for them to be. But God has provided a way for us to be forgiven of sin through Jesus Christ and what He did for us in His death and resurrection! The path of sin we have followed, just as the decision of Adam and Eve to sin, can be forgiven and altered through the power of the blood of Jesus Christ which He poured out for you and me to pay the penalty for our sin.

We must always remember that our choice to sin not only impacts our individual lives, but all those we have influence with - our family, our co-workers, our society in general. Let us choose to be obedient to God through our faith in Jesus Christ, and let us choose to reject the lies of the Adversary - "that serpent of old" - who would try to convince us that God is not looking out for our best. It was a lie then, and it is a lie today.