“The Believer’s Warfare (Part III)”
- The Preparation (preparing for war with Satan)
- The Armor (armor of a soldier)
III. The Enemy
A) What are we told about the devil?
- Okay, so now we are prepared (Saved, know who the enemy is, preparing for our defense against the enemy, etc.), we have put on the armor, and now we must be aware of our enemy’s plan, understand his weapons, and know how to avoid defeat by him.
- We know we have the power of the Lord and are doing all we can think of to defeat the enemy by “standing,” wearing every piece of the armor we can and await his arrival.
- You do not have to seek the devil. He will find you. He always comes to God’s children. The problem is, when will he come?
- So, what are we told about the devil?
- We are never told or commanded to “attack” the devil.
- We are told to “resist the devil and he will flee from you.”
- Satan is the greatest angel called Lucifer.
- He was an anointed cherub.
- He is full of pride and wants to be like God
- His pride got him kicked out of heaven in Revelation 12 and when he left heaven he took 1/3 of the angels of God with him.
B) Know that the devil exists
- Believe it or not, there are people who do not believe that there is a devil.
- Jesus knows he exists and was confronted by him in Matthew 4. Jesus talked about the devil (Satan) in John 14, and 16.
- The apostles were witness to many of the devils tricks, and possessions of people and animals.
- The devil tempted Eve, Christ, and anyone who claims Jesus as Lord.
- Satan perverted God’s word in Matthew 4.
- He opposed God’s work in Zachariah 3.
- He hinders the gospel in II Corinthians 4.
- He desires the nations in Revelation 16.
- He has the whole world in his lap in I John 5.
C) Satan has many names/titles
- Ezekiel 28:14… God calls him “anointed cherub.”
- John 12:31; 14:30, 16:11…”prince of this world.”
- Ephesians 2:2…”prince and power of the air.”
- Luke 11:15… “Beelzebub, the chief of the devils”
- 52 times he is called “Satan” which means adversary.
- 35 times he is called “devil (diabolos).” This name means slanderer or accuser.
- Revelation 12:19 and 20:2… “old serpent” and “dragon”
- I Peter 5:8…”roaring lion”
- Matthew 4:3 and I Thessalonians 3:5… “tempter”
- John 8:44… Jesus calls him “a murderer, and a liar.”
- I John 3:8… “a sinner”
- II Corinthians 11:13-15…an imitator (as an angel of light, and false prophets)
- Satan is known as a “deceiver” – Ephesians 4:13… Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: We as a church are to be in unity (one mind in our doctrines and faith in Jesus Christ) harmony comes when it is based on sound doctrines. Note Paul’s term here “the knowledge of the Son of God.” This means a deep knowledge a deep understanding of His truths. These people already had a basic knowledge but Paul is wanting them to have a deeper knowledge.
- How does Satan deceive us? Look at verse 14 and the warning Paul gives to the church that was being deceived by Satan (Through the goddess called Dianna)…14) That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, There comes a point in time in a Christian’s life that they must mature, they must “be no more children” in other words… that you stop acting and thinking like a child. If Satan has his way with you, you will never grow up. You will stay the same. Your knowledge of God and His Son would be limited. Paul tells the members of the church at Ephesus to not be as Satan wants you… “tossed to and fro” which means unstable in your thoughts with no discipline of self.
- “…and carried about with every wind of doctrine,” If you put any light weight thing to the wind it will blow away easily and keep going and going, like an Ever ready battery. A person not grounded in doctrinal teaching will not stay in any church and continue to bounce around like a ball from church to church and never get a full understanding of God’s truths. These people often lead undisciplined lives and have many moral issues and most of the time are spiritually bankrupt.
- “…by the sleight of men,” The word “slight” comes from a word that means cunning or skilled trickery, and properly means to throw dice as in a game as a “mere chance (luck).” This complete phrase here “by the sleight of men” seems rather to denote a man’s forming his religious opinions by the throw of a die; or, in other words, it describes a man whose opinions seem to be the result of mere chance.
- “…and cunning craftiness,” This word means very skilled at subtle tricks on people. An example would be that mentioned by Paul in …
II Corinthians 11:3 (KJV) But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
- “…whereby they lie in wait to deceive;” If you remember nothing else that we have discussed this morning, I urge you to remember this one thing. This spiritual war tactic is the best of Satan and his minions. What is it? “WAITING.” That is it. We can learn a lot from that. My late father had a saying concerning people who continually do wrong. That saying was… “Give them enough rope and they will hang themselves.” Meaning… to be patient and wait long enough their sin will find them out. It amazes me at how long it takes sometimes for people to wake up and realize their spiritual bankruptcy.
- We need to realize that Satan’s whole system is based on subtle deceit, lies, falsehoods, and he is the father of all of that.
- If you think you can control Satan on your own, you are sadly mistaken.
- Do you realize…
- Satan has deceived every man, woman, boy or girl since Eve.
- Satan deceived Israel into worshiping idols all through the O.T.
- In the N.T. Satan deceived Israel again which caused them to murder their long awaited Messiah.
- In the future, Satan will deceive Israel once again in making them think that the anti – Christ is their Messiah.
D) What Satan does…
- Perverts the Word of God…Luke 8:11…Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12) Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.
- He promotes a lifestyle that damns people to hell.
- He creates doubt in people’s mind.
- He creates persecution against the Christian.
- He hinders the service and worship to God.
- He brings pride and destruction to the hearts of the saved.
- He brings discouragement and depression.
- He uses the worldly people with power to persecute the followers of Jesus … look at our text verse in Ephesians 6:12…For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Remember John 15:18…If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated)
- Satan loves to get people under his control. People who are “control freaks” are used of the devil. They are so busy running other people’s life that they cannot focus on their own. Control freaks are people who create great distractions.
- God teaches us “free will.” Not a “forced will” directed by others.