Listen to ““ARE WE WRONG ABOUT HOW SATAN WORKS?” #ChurchOfTheUndead” on Spreaker.

Recently I had an email conversation with a Weirdo family member who was going through an extremely difficult season. The timing of it could not have been worse. Each area of his life that mattered to him was filled with chaos of some sort. But what struck me most about our conversation is that when the problems began mounting one on top of the other, he immediately recognized it as an attack from the enemy.
This person was new to the faith, but already could see the spiritual battles and Satan’s schemes. This was Satan’s method, and one he’d used many times in the past. But instead of succumbing to it, my friend put on his spiritual armor, turned to friends for prayer, and sought the Lord. He didn’t fall for the enemy’s deception, because he knew the One who was in him was greater than the one who sought to destroy him.
Often, we fall for Satan’s schemes because we don’t recognize them for what they are. Instead, we focus on the distraction itself. We look at the troubles multiplying around us and try to control the situation instead of coming to the One who can actually help us. And this is exactly what our enemy, the Devil, wants.

Hello, Weirdos – I’m Pastor Darren – welcome to the Church of the Undead.
Here in the Church of the Undead I can share ideas which are relevant to those who suffer with depression, need some encouragement, and for those who love (or are just curious about) the God of the Bible. And it doesn’t matter if you are a Weirdo-in-Christ or just a Weirdo – everyone is welcome here at the Church of the Undead. And I use the word “undead” because here we are DEAD to sin and ALIVE in Christ! If you want to join this Weirdo congregation, just click that subscribe or follow button – and visit us online at WeirdDarkness.com/CHURCH.
Full disclosure – I might use the term “pastor” because I’ve branded this feature as a church – but I do not have a theology degree, nor did I ever go to Bible college. I’m just a guy who gave his life to Christ in 1989 and has tried to “walk the walk” every since – and has stumbled a lot along the way – because, like everybody else, I am an imperfect, heavily-flawed human being. So please don’t take what I say as gospel; dig into God’s word yourself for confirmation, inspiration, and revelation.
That being said, welcome to the Church of the Undead.

If we plan on defating Satan, to keep him from bringing us down, we need to understand how he operates. And a lot of people, including myself in the past, have been completely wrong about how he works.

First, Satan cannot read your mind.
Satan is not omniscient. He does not know what you’re thinking, nor does he have the ability to – unlike God who, as the psalmist says, can name a thought that’s on your tongue before you speak it (Psalm 139:4). No, the way Satan operates is through slow observation. He has lots of demons (that is, fallen angels) carrying out his tasks, and his armies pay close attention to our actions over time. And folks, our actions speak volumes about what our weaknesses are. Through this careful examination, Satan and his minions are able to present lies, temptations, and scenarios that pinpoint our pressure points.
Let us not give our enemy undue power by declaring that he’s gotten inside our head or “The devil made me do it!” Instead, let’s remember that we alone have the ability to control our thoughts. Remember that God has given us everything we need to declare victory over the devil, and he did not leave us to fight this battle alone. We get to say what goes in and what comes out, and the devil can never take that power from us. Apostle Paul explained it this way: “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV)
Taking every thought captive is not a passive process but an active, moment-by-moment one. Doing this requires us to know the Word of God, and to apply it to our everyday lives.

Second… Satan masquerades himself in LIGHT, not DARKNESS.
One of the last things Satan says to Eve before she eats the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden is that “she will be like God” (Genesis 3:5). At surface level, this promise would seem like a good thing. God is holy and perfect, so what could possibly be wrong with being more like God, right? But the bottom line is this: By listening to the serpent, Eve chose to trust him over God. Her actions were in direct disobedience to what God told her, and she fell for a lie masqueraded as truth.
Today, our enemy the Devil follows the same pattern. He doesn’t announce himself with a blaring trumpet, but often masquerades himself behind things that appear good. This deception may also include people, like false prophets. Even the early church had to arm themselves against his schemes.
“…for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, that his very servants also masquerade as servants of righteousness.”(2 Corinthians 11:14-15 NIV)
When faced with a lie or temptation that may appear good at surface level, some questions to ask ourselves are: Does this contradict a command or another truth I’ve read in God’s Word? Does following this path elevate myself above God? Does doing this make me feel anxious?
If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then stop and pray. Proceed with caution and talk to God about it until you have a clear answer. God is more than willing to give wisdom to those who ask.

Third… Satan knows the word of God extremely well; he just twists its meaning.
Our enemy is not ignorant about the Word of God. After all, he is a fallen angel. This is one of the reasons we need to study the Bible in its proper context and ask for the Spirit to help us in our understanding. Our world is filled with Instagram posts, sermons, and YouTube videos sharing messages that may seem biblical on the surface, but upon further examination, are not. This is exactly why I tell you at the top of every message here in the podcast to study the bible yourself for confirmation, inspiration, and revelation. Even the most well-meaning people get things wrong once in a while… but there are many out there purposefully twisting scripture to suit their own agendas.
If we look at Jesus’ temptation by Satan in the desert, we see the importance of not only knowing the Word, but knowing God and his heart behind it. Satan first tries to appeal to Jesus’ physical need — his hunger. Jesus uses the Word in his denial of the temptation, so in Satan’s second attempt, he tries to get Jesus to pick up his deity and show his power. But this time, he also uses the Word, twisting it to try to manipulate Jesus.
“If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written: ‘He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’’” (Satan was quoting Psalm 91:11)
But Jesus knows the Word and the Father too well to fall for Satan’s schemes. He answers, “It is also written: ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test’” (quoting Deuteronomy 6:16).
Although none of us will ever know God or his Word better than Jesus, the good news is this: He sent us a Helper, the Holy Spirit. And when we’re in doubt about whether something is true, the Holy Spirit will help us. He gives us discernment and is the voice in our ear, pointing us to the right or the left (Isaiah 30:21).

And one more… #4… Satan uses distraction more than he uses direct invitation or temptation.
One of our enemy’s main goals is to distract us from our purposes here on earth — to glorify God, enjoy him, and to help lead others to him. And we don’t have to look very far to see that distractions are endless. Some of these distractions may even seem good on surface level. How often do you ask people how they are doing and they say, “busy?” We have become a culture that equates business with happiness and importance.
The problem is that all of these distractions draw our attention away from the One who matters. Our souls become weary and burnt out, but often we don’t even realize why. And when this happens, our enemy has achieved his goal. Our souls aren’t connected with God in the way they’re designed to be, we keep going about with our days as though everything is fine. Revelation speaks strongly about this type of double-mindedness and distraction:
Revelation 2:4 = “Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.”
But you know what? It is never too late to begin again. God’s mercies are new each morning, and he desires nothing more than to have a relationship with us. We can come to him no matter how far we’ve roamed, and he is there waiting. Let’s not let our enemy distract us from the most important relationship in our life or keep us from fulfilling the purposes he has for us. It’s not worth it.

I’ll finish with this… the lies of the enemy are too numerous to name, but we can be sure of this: He’s always telling those lies, even if they half-truths. Jesus called him the father of lies (John 8:44). So, anything that comes out of Satan’s mouth is meant to steal, kill and destroy.
While it’s important to recognize his tactics, our best defense will always be to know the One who defeated him… Jesus. Because he is greater, and he will lead us to victory. Let’s start there, today and every day.

If you like what you heard, share this episode with others whom you think might also like it. Maybe the person you share it with will want to join this Weirdo congregation too! To join this Weirdo family yourself, find us on Facebook, listen to previous messages, even find out how to join me in my daily bible studies, visit WeirdDarkness.com/CHURCH. That’s WeirdDarkness.com/CHURCH. You can find the sources I used for this week’s message in the show notes. I’m Darren Marlar. Thanks for joining me, Weirdos. Until next time, Jesus loves you and so do I. God bless.

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