Have you ever thought about how Satan entices human beings into sin?
When we are tempted by a particular thing, it seems natural to engage. We believe that by engaging with that temptation, it will give us something. It might make us feel good, meet a perceived need or be pleasurable. Eve thought God was holding out on her when she wanted to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. She didn't believe God's warning when He set a boundary and placed the garden as off-limits.
The word Satan means "deceiver." Other attributes given to Satan is that he kills, steals and destroys human beings. He wants you to impugn the nature of God. He wants to cause war in heaven and bring all humans to revolt against God the Father.
We Are All Sinners
The Bible tells us there is only one human who did not sin. That was Jesus.
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus" (Rom. 3:23-26).
But we believe there will be no consequences.
One of Satan’s ploys is to convince us that there is no consequence to our sin. However, clearly there are lasting consequences that include the following:
- Separation from God
- Compromise leads to deceit in our lives
- Lost confidence in the spiritual dimension of our lives
When the nation of Israel sinned against God in the wilderness of Egypt, the Bible says it resulted in leanness in their soul: "They soon forgot His works; they did not wait for His counsel, but lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, and tested God in the desert. And He gave them their request, but sent leanness into their soul" (Ps. 106:13-15).
God calls us to endure temptation and pass the tests that life brings each of us in regard to sin.
"Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. Let no one say when he is tempted, 'I am tempted by God'; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death" (James 1:12-15).
Satan’s 3 Baits for Sin
There are three areas where Satan uses bait to destroy a person’s life, found in 1 John 2:15-17. They are 1) lust of the flesh, 2) lust of the eyes and 3) pride of life.
"Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh [sexual sin, gluttony], the lust of the eyes ["I must have that possession," a consumptive lifestyle, greed], and the pride of life ["I am better than others," arrogance, unteachable spirit, independence, no need of others]—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever" (1 John 2:15-17).
Satan does not need any new strategies. These have worked well for thousands of years.
Satan wants to steal, kill and destroy our lives. He wants to make your past your future.
"If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly" (John 10:10).
Another way of summarizing this is to say that Satan wants to:
1. Steal your money.
2. Kill your life and destiny.
3. Destroy your family.
He is doing a very effective job at all three among many in the world today.
How Sin Affects Our Attitudes Toward God
Once we start a pattern of sin, we become hesitant to come boldly to God because Satan has convinced us that God could not love us now because of our sin. Satan convinces you that your sin proves what you already believed about yourself—that you are unworthy of God's love. Ultimately, Satan wants you to believe three lies:
1. You are powerless over your circumstances.
2. You are a victim to an unjust, unloving God, and you have no value.
3. God has abandoned you.
Our Response to Sin Must Be Repentance
"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us" (1 John 1:8-10).
Whenever you sin, come in humility and repent of your sin. That is all the Father asks of you. Turn away, and walk toward righteousness. When the Father looks at us, He no longer looks at our sin or failure; He sees the blood of Jesus covering our sin. That is why we can come boldly to Him if we have repented.
Remember, God loves you no matter what condition you are in. However, to maintain your position with God, you must be free of sin in your life. When you fail, simply acknowledge and ask for His grace to walk free so that you can enjoy unbroken fellowship with Jesus.
Os Hillman is president of Marketplace Leaders and author of Change Agent and TGIF: Today God Is First, a free email daily devotional. To learn more about breaking free from Satan’s strategies to defeat you, please go to 3greatestlies.com and watch Os Hillman’s three free videos.