Every day the devil uses his number one weapon against you with the goal of destroying your relationship with God. In the Bible, the devil speaks three times: in Genesis, he attempts to turn man against God; in Job, he attempts to turn God against man; and in the Gospels, he attempts to turn the God-man (Jesus) against His Father. Religion defines a list of do’s and don’ts, but Christianity calls us to abide in relationship with God. The devil understands the difference, so his goal is to break this relationship connection.
Religion defines a list of do’s and don’ts, but Christianity calls us to abide in relationship with God. The devil understands the difference, so his goal is to break this relationship connection.
The context of today’s passage is that God created the heavens and the earth in Genesis 1-2. In Chapter 3, we find the introduction of the devil:
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”
“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:1-5
The devil is more cunning and intelligent than you are. He can convince you to do things that will hurt yourself, your family, your relationships, and your future. In the Bible, he has many names that imply his character, and none of them are good!
Enemy (Matt 13:39)
Accuser (Revelation 12:10)
Father of Lies (John 8:44)
Wicked One (1 John 3:12)
Murderer (John 8:44)
Tempter (1 Thessalonians 3:5)
Any time you question God’s Word or His promises, you are entertaining the devil’s suggestions. How will you know what God’s Word says if you don’t read it, discuss it, memorize it, and teach it? Without this intimate familiarity with God’s Word, you can be easily influenced by redefinitions of the media and of others around you; you won’t know the truth for yourself. The devil is very subtle. He doesn’t say that he wants to ruin your life; he says that God wants to ruin your life and that you’ll be better off on your own.
Also, it’s important to realize that Eve is alone when the serpent approaches her, which has tremendous impact on the situation. Are you leaving yourself alone? Are you in a small group? Do you have accountability and fellowship with other believers? If you are not surrounded by other people who will pray for you, support you, and challenge you, then you’re alone and made vulnerable for the devil to enter in with his lies.
The devil’s number one weapon is a two-fold lie:
1. Sin has no consequences.
The devil claims that Adam and Even will not die if they eat the fruit of the garden. He tries to convince them (and us) that we can go our own way – lie, cheat, steal, turn away from God – without any repercussions. This is simply not true. Sin always has consequences that destroy parts of our lives.
2. You can decide good and evil on your own.
Every single day you are told that God and other people don’t know what you are thinking and don’t know what you are doing behind closed doors. The devil wants you to think you are getting away with something, that you have your own rights, you can do whatever you want, and that you don’t need a two-thousand year old book to tell you the difference between good and evil. But if you look around, you can easily see the death brought about by sin. Sin brings the death of relationships, opportunities, visions, and self-respect. Going our own way and ignoring God’s instruction, provision, and protection only brings about our destruction, both physical and spiritual.
Five things that died in the fall:
1. Innocence before God and each other (Gen 3:7)
Adam and Eve walked with God without shame. But once they chose to ignore God’s Word and to sin, their eyes were opened and they saw that they were naked.
2. Intimacy with God (Gen 3:8)
They try to hide from God (though this is really impossible). They have given up their close relationship with their Creator.
3. Spiritual authority in the Kingdom (Gen 3:9)
God asks them, “Where are you? Are you any better off than you were before?” Adam and Eve’s authority or status in the kingdom has been broken.
4. Sense of security in our relationship with God (Gen 3:10)
Adam and Eve hide from God because they are now afraid of Him. God wants to care for you, give you vision, and provide for you, but when you sin, you push Him away and choose to live outside that security.
5. The trust of God in you (Gen 3:11-13)
The woman blames the devil for her sin and the man blames the woman for his sin, but in the end, they each made a choice to disobey God’s instruction. The Bible says that we all sin and fall short of the glory of God. At some time, we all believe that we will not die and that we can decide good and evil for ourselves. We believe that we are adults, that we have rights, and that no one can tell us what to do – but rebelling against God’s Word has a penalty of death.
The penalty for choosing separation from God is death. Eternally, this is hell – paying for sin with our own lives for eternity. If the penalty of sin is not death, then Jesus died for nothing. But Jesus agreed to die once for all, so that anyone who surrenders their life to Him will not die, but be reunited with God. We can accept the payment Jesus offered and live eternally in the context of a restored relationship with God!