In the Garden Satan commenced his ‘game plan.’ Distort God’s word plain and straightforward word. Cause a person to doubt that God means what He says. Destroy the relationship between the person and his or her Lord through unbelief leading to disobedience and into despair. That’s all wrapped up in a three letter word – sin!
The 39 books of the Old Testament record time after time how successful this approach has been. Fortunately, there were those who stood true to the revealed word of God, although they messed up in their personal lives. Then came Jesus! As the Second Adam He faced the full force of the Devil’s master plan. How did Jesus as the Second Adam prevail? By correctly interpreting, quoting and applying Scripture. “It is written” was the Son of Man’s sword which sent the Devil sulking to ‘lick’ his wounds.
Yahweh has spelt out His masterplan. The Devil doesn’t want you to read it, believe it or share it. He uses everything in his arsenal to deafen a person to God’s word. As soon as the early Church began its outreach with “It is written” the Devil tried to deface the message and offer either alternatives or adversaries to crush it. The book of Acts is an account of the conflict. Perhaps the most succinct book in the New Testament revealing his infiltration and perverting is Jude. Revelation 2 and 3 also tells a similar story. What promises victory? Summed up in the phrase “that which has been delivered once and for all (time). That is, the message of the cross and the person and victory of Jesus! Righty dividing and applying God’s word confronts the half-truths, misquoting and outright lies of the deceiver.
However, those who belong to the Lord have a personal responsibility necessary to ensure victory. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 ‘Though we walk in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons. For the weapons of our warfare are not physical, but they are mighty before God for the overthrown and destruction pf strongholds. [Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (Amplified version).
What Eve, then Adam failed to do in Eden continues to be a challenge for their descendants who follow Christ Jesus as Saviour and Lord. That is, lead every thought and purpose captive by obedience to Christ and His word. I find this a constant challenge. Whether it is pride, pleasure, ignorance or indifference I will sometimes be led on a detour from doing what God’s word says. I then find that my spiritual ‘arm’ is lead’ and my stamina as the Lord’s soldier had evaporated. Getting off the detour, taking refuge in the grace of the Lord and accepting His discipline is the only way to tackling the Devil’s strategies. We are only overcomers by being faithful to the Overcomer, Jesus! We can only be faithful through knowing His word and growing in His grace. We will ever only thwart the Devil’s game place when we are people of sincerity and pure motives and speak the word of God in Christ and in the sight and presence of God. (check 2 Corinthians 2:17)
Remember as servants, we are accountable to the Master. As soldiers, the Lord of Hosts will inspect. As saints, our relationship to the Redeemer will be scrutinized. As witnesses to the game plan of the Lord our defence and promotion of it will be evaluated.
Our prayer must include “Lord, teach me your word. Lord keep me faithful. Lord, stand with me so that I will stand true to you!”