Paul and his new partner Silas traveled from city to city sharing the gospel and encouraging believers. Barnabas and Mark took off in another direction to do the same. God turned the disagreement between Paul and Barnabas into two missionary teams and the gospel reached twice as many towns. Satan may have thought he could stop the gospel by causing a rift. God turned it around for his glory.
Satan doesn’t always use anger or tragedy to fight against Christians. His weapon isn’t always persecution. Often he is much more subtle. He knows Jesus. He can quote Scripture. And sometimes Satan sounds like a Christian.
When Paul and Silas were trying to conduct evangelistic meetings, a demon possessed girl followed them everywhere. The demon within her caused her to repeatedly shout, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” Satan didn’t prompt the girl to make fun of them, argue with them, insult them. She sounded like a believer, yet Paul recognized it as Satan and demanded the demon leave the girl in the name of Jesus.
Friend, do you recognize Satan when he comes disguised as the angel of light? I don’t care if it’s something you hear from a Bible teacher, a friend, a preacher, or a blogger. Test it with Scripture. It doesn’t matter if it sounds Christian. Don’t accept it unless you can prove it true by God’s Holy Word. I am burdened for believers especially these days when so many ungodly things are being preached on TV and in local pulpits. The politically correct doctrines some would have us believe cannot be from God because they contradict Scripture. Taking a verse out of context doesn’t make it right. Sin is sin. And the wages of sin is death. Jesus is the only way to the Father and he IS the Truth!
Let’s defeat Satan by being in God’s Word every day, by committing to memory verses God makes jump out at us, by thinking about what we hear, and praying that God would reveal his Truth to us every minute. And let’s demand of those who are teaching in our churches, our schools, and in the media that they stay true to Scripture. Period.
Dear God, I pray for believers today. May we not accept everything we hear as from you. But may we test it according to your written Word. Thank you for the Bible. I pray that each of us will realize the treasure we have right in our homes. May we use it, love it, study it so that we can recognize Satan’s attacks and lies. Then, God, give us a boldness to speak the Truth in love.