by Paul Tautges | February 27, 2018 8:34 am
Genesis 3 opens with the presence of an evil serpent in the garden. He is “more crafty than any other beast of the field.” Sometime between God’s pronouncement of all creation as good, and the temptation of man, was the fall of Lucifer from heaven. Ezekiel 28 describes his fall, which resulted from his desire to be God—from pride. As a created being, Lucifer was a glorious, high-ranking angel. But he was not content to be a reflector of God’s glory. He was not content to worship God. He wanted to be worshiped. And so judgment fell and he was thrown out of heaven to the earth.
In Genesis 3, we see this serpent has now moved from the field into the garden. The man who was entrusted to keep the garden is seemingly unaware that an intruder has crept in. James Hamilton writes in his excellent biblical theology, “Adam fails to keep the realm of God’s dwelling pure, allowing an unclean serpent to enter the garden. The serpent subverts the created order by tempting the woman rather than the man.”
Who is this serpent? Revelation 12:9 tells us he is “the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan.”
Satan’s crafty scheme takes place in three stages:
This same serpent is doing the same to us today. He lures us away from the authority of God’s word by establishing ourselves as our own authority. This leads us away from full devotion and obedience. Satan works the same way with us. Out of deep pastoral concern, the apostle Paul expressed to the Corinthians, But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ (2 Cor. 11:13).
Satan delights to lead believers away from simple obedience to God’s word and delight in Christ, the Redeemer. Let us be aware of the devil’s schemes!
Adapted from last Sunday’s sermon, The Beginning of the End.]
RECOMMENDED READING: Good News About Satan: A Gospel Look at Spiritual Warfare
Source URL: http://counselingoneanother.com/2018/02/27/recognizing-satans-crafty-scheme/
Copyright ©2018 Counseling One Another unless otherwise noted.