Satan is working overtime to destroy the faith of Christians. Paul says, “Lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices” (2 Cor 2:11). Satan’s main weapon is deceit. He is described as the “serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world” (Rev 12:9). Satan uses many techniques to deceive us to sin. “For Satan transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness” (2 Cor 11:14-15).
One of the ways Satan deceives people is by using false teachers who pretend to be servants of Christ but are actually servants of Satan. Satan does not appear in a red suit carrying a pitchfork, but many times he is a well-dressed smooth talking false teacher carrying a Bible. There is much false teaching in religion today. Paul says, “That we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting” (Eph 4:14). Satan uses all kinds of trickery and deceptions by perverting God’s word to make others believe that man-made doctrines are the divine truth.
Satan’s main resource is a lie. Jesus says concerning Satan, “When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it” (Jn 8:44). The children of the Devil refuse to accept the truth. In the parable of the sower, Jesus says, “Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the Devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved” (Lk 8:12).
That old Serpent has deceived the millions that they should be happy in this present world. He has told them to eat, drink, and be merry because they only go around life once in life. He has convinced them that adultery does not mean what God said it meant (Matt 19:9). He has led them to believe that adultery won’t send their soul to hell (1 Cor 6:9 f; Gal 5:19). Literally, adultery has destroyed many in the Lord’s church. He has deceived many to believe that certain people were born to be homosexuals, lesbians, transsexuals, and the suchlike. He has led many to believe that fornication and cohabitation is a normal step to a good marriage. He has deceived the world to accept gay marriage as normal. He has convinced many to believe that alcoholism, stealing, and lying are diseases and not a sin. He has nurtured the entire world to believe that greed (described as blind ambition) is a good virtue to possess. This is to say nothing how Satan has deceived the denominational world into believing a perverted gospel (Gal 1:6-9). Sadly, many in the Lord’s church are being lead astray by the additions of man-made doctrines and the commandments of men, which have turned many from the truth (Matt 15:7-9; Tit 1:14).
How do we protect ourselves from the devices of Satan? We must “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the Devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith” (1 Pet 5:8-9). The Devil never rests. He is always looking for ways to entice people to sin. Satan is dangerous to our spiritual welfare. He wants us to be lost. He wants our company in Hell where he will be. “The Devil who deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone…and will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Rev 20:10).
Satan can be defeated if we stand fast in the faith. “Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (Jam 4:7-8). When we repent of sin and do God’s will, then the Devil will flee from us. We must be on guard “so that Satan does not tempt you” (1 Cor 7:5), “lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin” (Heb 3:13). To protect ourselves we must “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the trickery of the Devil” (Eph 6:11). In our fight with Satan, we must use “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Eph 6:17). “So that they may know the truth, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the Devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will” (2 Tim 2:25-26).
When one departs from God, he becomes a captive of the Devil. Satan cannot make people sin. Satan deceives people and they sin of their own free will. People can be forgiven of their sins by repenting and obeying God’s will, thereby escaping the snare of Satan.