May 11, 2017

The Devil’s Battle Plan

“Be on your guard and stay awake. Your enemy, the devil, is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack.” 1 Peter 5:8 (CEV)

Since the serpent entered the Garden of Eden, Satan has followed a consistent battle plan in his strategy to bring chaos, confusion, disconnection and destruction. He implements the same plan today in our relationships to divide and conquer. In his letter to the Corinthian church, Paul said,

“I don’t want Satan to outwit us. After all, we are not ignorant about Satan’s scheming.”  

So, how does the devil attack us? What is the devil’s battle plan?

Step 1 is deception. Just as he did with Eve in the Garden, Satan uses deception to convince us of something that is not true. Jesus calls him a liar in John 8:44:

“From the very beginning (the devil) was a murderer and has never been on the side of truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie, he is only doing what is natural to him, because he is a liar and the father of lies.” 

Satan will use cyber-attacks on your mind to infect you with a virus and corrupt your thinking. He will try to convince you that you are no good, no one will ever love you, God can’t use you, God doesn’t really care, this isn’t that big a sin or any number of other lies to prevent you from trusting God and doing His will. He convinced Eve that God was holding out on her. Satan will lie to you about who you are and who God is, and he will lie to you about sin. When you hear his lies, it’s critical to turn to God’s Word and find the truth so you won’t fall prey to his deception.

Step 2 is distraction. The devil wants to distract you from the real problem and from God’s purpose. He will even substitute something good to distract you from the best that God desires for your life. How do you know when you’re being distracted by the devil?  The Bible says,

“For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace….” 1 Cor. 14:33 (KJV)

Satan uses confusion to distract you.  His distractions lead to step three.

Step 3 is disconnection. Satan wants to put blinders over our eyes that prevent us from seeing the cosmic conflict going on behind the scenes in our relationships so he can push us toward disconnection. God always pushes us toward connection. He created us to live in community, to love one another and serve one another. He even uses conflict to create deeper connection. Satan wants us to see our mates as the enemy and fight with one another instead of for one another. In 2 Corinthians 4:4, the Bible says,

“Satan who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.” 

Step 4 is destruction. Disconnection leads to destruction. Satan pushes us toward disconnection to destroy our relationships and our lives. This is his ultimate goal. Jesus said,

“The thief comes to steal and kill and destroy….” John 10:10a (NIV) 

Satan will try to steal your joy, kill your passion and destroy your relationships. 

Knowing the devil’s battle plan, Peter warns us:

“Be on your guard and stay awake. Your enemy, the devil, is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack.” 1 Peter 5:8 (CEV)

Awareness is half the battle. Next comes action! Tomorrow, we’ll examine the action we must take to defeat the devil’s plan.