Summary: To Foil to Demon, We must Understand How He Works In Our Lives!
(Drawn By a Sermon Authored by Bro Phil Sanders, Concord Road Church of Christ, Nashville TN)
IF I WERE THE DEVIL
1. Peter warns us in 1 Pet. 5:8,9, "Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls about seeking someone to devour.
2. This is true! C. S. Lewis wrote in his fictional novel, The Screwtape Letters, about a chief demon that trains a recruit in how to steal the souls of men.
3. We should know Satan is a cunning adversary (2 Cor. 11:14) and "masquerades as an angel of light."
4. We are encouraged not to give place to the devil (Eph. 4:27).
5. Fortunately God gives us a way of escape (1 Cor. 10:13)
a. so we may escape his strategies to take away our souls.
b. It helps knowing a little bit about how the devil works.
Someone suggested the theme, "If I were the devil, I would…"
I Would Want You To Be Godless
1. I would want you to be a fool (Prov. 14:1)
a. Fools do not believe in Hell or Heaven.
b. Solomon said, "fools despise wisdom and instruction" (Prov. 1:7).
c. Each of us without God was once foolish (Tit. 3:3) and believed myths and lies.
2. I would want you to ignore the Word of God.
a. The devil does this because he doesn’t want you to believe
b. . Rom. 10:17 says that faith comes by hearing the Word of God.
i. Faith is essential (Heb. 11:6; John 8:24) to our salvation,
c. and because I don’t want you to know the truth (John 8:31,32), I will keep you from the Word.
d. I know this will also keep you from the freedom that comes from knowledge of the truth
e. I will tell you there is no absolute truth and keep you from the freedom from sin.
f. I want you ignorant at the judgment (John 12:48)
3. I’d offer you counterfeit religion.
a. I’d tell you that one church is as good as another.
b. I’d tell you that it doesn’t matter what you believe, as long as you love Jesus.
c. I’d offer entertainment in place of worship, glorifying the performer instead of God.
d. Pride is the door to so much that is wrong. I’d make your talents more important than God’s instructions.
e. In the end I’d make your beliefs a worship of self
4. I Would Poison Your Relationships (Eph. 4:29-32)
1. I’d tell you that you are #1 and the most important person.
2. I’d promote jealousy and envy (pride); forget kindness and compassion.
3. I’d encourage gossip and slander
4. I’d plant it in your heart to "get even" and take revenge! I’d say to you to be slow to forgive anyone.
5. Could it not be Satan plants in our hearts evil thoughts, malice and ill will to tempt us and to divert our attention from the real work at hand?
6. By doing so he destroys friendships and homes.
7. Satan put it in Judas’ heart to betray Jesus (John 13:2,27).
8. We must ask what is he putting into your heart?
I Would Want You to Be Insensitive to Sin (Eph. 4:17-19)
1. I would change the way we look at sin by using non-threatening words to soften the effects of sin. If I can label sin as something, which will not hurt you, then I can perhaps persuade you to do evil
a. I will call adultery and fornication an "affair" or an "indiscretion."
b. Homosexuals would become "gays."
c. Some types of murder would become "mercy killing" or euthanasia.
d. Lies would become "white lies" or "half-truths."
e. Stealing would become "borrowing."
f. I’d label doctrinal matters as "non-issues":
i. Baptism (reason or mode wouldn’t affect salvation);
ii. instrumental music;
iii. and the day of Lord’s Supper.
g. I’d glorify personal opinion and minimize matters of faith
h. . I’d minimize sin and tell you that small sins don’t hurt anyone.
2. I would emphasize being "politically correct" so that pointing out sin became bigotry and ugliness.
a. I’d make an enemy of the people anyone who dared to criticize any sin.
b. I’d call them "hate mongers with phobias.
c. I would support those who permissively see no evil in sin as our friends.
d. I would make fun of and put down everything Christian, moral or decent.
e. Being Christian isn’t "cool."
f. I’d label anything I didn’t like as ’Pharisaical’ and ’hypocritical.’
g. I’d concentrate on all the things "wrong" with the church
3. I would use humor to get you to laugh at sin and make it appear to be "fun" and "harmless."
a. I would develop television shows that make fun of the righteous and make heroes out of sinners.