The longer we live, the more we realize that life is like a battlefield. We are soldiers on that battlefield, there is a war going on and we have a crafty enemy who uses the weapons and strategies of deception. He does not just want to hurt us; his goal is to destroy us. His name is Satan, the original deceiver and father of lies.
We need to know who we are dealing with when it comes to our spiritual battle. Even before man was created, Satan was a liar and the enemy of truth. He deceived angels and brought them down with him because he desired to set up his own kingdom with his own followers, opposed to the rule of God. Like he did with Adam and Eve, Satan’s uses deception to break our fellowship with God and to block the fulfillment of God’s purpose in our lives. Satan has many tools and strategies at his disposal: he can use demons, other people, and our own desires to deceive us. Demons or false teachers can influence our thinking and cause us to go down a dark path. Also, we can simply desire things that are not what God wants for us, and those desires can lead us on a detour away from the will of God.
Like soldiers on the battlefield, believers need to be trained and prepared for Satan’s evil strategies. The good news is that Satan has already been conquered legally by the cross of Christ. He has no legal power over us because the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all our sin. But we cannot be secret agent Christians, trying to camouflage our belief in Jesus. We must stand for truth and be willing to identify ourselves as followers of Jesus. Satan is defeated by our confession of sin and by our commitment to Christ. When we commit to follow God and surrender to His will, then He fights on our behalf, we are not misled by Satan’s lies and we can live victoriously!
- Sometimes advertising can be deceiving. Can you think of an example of a commercial or something that a store told you about a product that turned out to be false?
- If you have kids, do you ever hear your kids try to deceive each other or play tricks on each other? Why do they do that?
Let’s Get Personal
- Have you encountered any of Satan’s deceptive strategies in your life? Has he used people to influence your thinking by making a lie look like the truth?
- What are some good desires that are distracting you from God’s purpose for your life? Are these good things preventing you from spending time with God in prayer and reading the Bible? Do you have other desires that are not good and are distracting you from God’s purpose for your life?
- Are you a person who stands for the truth? What would it look like in your life, your workplace, your school, your family, etc. for you to begin standing for truth?
Take the Next Step
- What steps can you take this week to prioritize your walk with God? How can you grow closer and deeper in your relationship with God so you are more aligned with God’s truth and more aware when the enemy is trying to deceive you?
- In what ways have you been trying to fight your spiritual battle on your own? How can you begin to rely on God’s strength, knowing that He will fight for you?
- Do you know someone who has not yet trusted in Christ, or do you know a fellow Christian who believes a lie and has started walking away from the Lord? Pray for the Lord to give you an opportunity this week to speak the truth to that person in love.
- Want to go deeper? Take time to look at the following passages: Psalm 139:16; 1 Thessalonians 2:3-4; 1 Timothy 4:1-2; James 1:13-16; 1 Peter 5:8; Revelation 12:9-11.
Renew Your Mind
“When he [the devil] lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”