Summary: Its time we rise above...it time to put on the armor...its time to recognize where we really stand in light of God's word and begin to fight the good fight of faith God's way! That is the only way to victory.
This morning I want to begin to expose the lie...the original lie that brought about the downfall of multitudes of people since that fateful day in the Garden of Eden. I hope you will prepare your hearts and minds because that very same lie, in one form or another, is threatening our very existence. We need to fight our one true enemy or die...but to do that we need to understand what its all about.
Steve Green, who sang for 6 years with Bill & Gloria Gaither, tells about getting to know some of the work crews in the large auditoriums where their concerts were held. Now, the Gaithers prefer concerts in the round, which means extra work for the riggers who walk the 4" rafter beams often a hundred feet above the concrete floor to hang the speakers and spotlights.
He says, "The fellows I talked to weren't bothered by the sight of looking down a hundred feet. What they didn't like were jobs in buildings that had suspended ceilings. They were high in the air, and if they slipped their weight would smash right through those flimsy ceiling tiles. But their minds seemed to play tricks with them, often making them careless.
And this is a good illustration of Satan's business...persuading us that the danger of a spiritual fall in minimal, giving us a false sense of security...or making things look like something other than what they really are.
What I want to do over the coming weeks is to shed a little light on some popular beliefs and ideas that are rooted in the forked tongue of that Serpent of Eden. I want to use Genesis 3 as my main text because it's here we find God's record of the introduction of sin into His creation. And this serves not only as a warning against Satan's tricks...but also as a pattern for satanic deception.
I want to show you that the lies used on Eve are the same ones that are warmed up, rehashed, and served over and over again to our lie hungry, carnal natures. And thousands of years of sin and degradation show how successful this has been.
But I also want to show you that we can train ourselves to spot and avoid these deceptions if we just examine their roots and become familiar with the devil's tactics and devises. We need to remember the words of Proverbs 16:25, "There is a way that seems right to a man but its end is the way of death."
Now, in the Garden of Eden, the Serpent, Satan, unleashed his most potent weapon (and some say his only weapon) against both God and man...the lie! And it was very, very potent...separating man from God.
We all know that lies work! They slip into a thought or a conversation and they undermine the very ground you stand on. They appeal to the petty prides and little lusts in us that Satan knows so well...and before you know it you're bound.
We must allow the Holy Spirit to give us the discernment we need to expose these lies so that we can follow God's word in such a way that we'll truly know the truth, and be set free. Knowing the truth about our enemy and our own carnal nature is absolutely essential.
The apostle Paul wrote to following words on several occasions, "I would not have you ignorant." He would not have us ignorant of spiritual gifts...of the mystery of Israel...of the fate of those who die as Christians, just to name a few.
But in 2 Corinthians 2:11 he says that he and his followers were not ignorant of, or outwitted by Satan's schemes. And here Paul refers to a church discipline case...and specifically planting seeds of unforgiveness and division in the church.
Even though our sinful nature is "counted as dead through the death of Christ" we need to know that it still has enough power to blindside us if we ignore its ability to subdue us. And there are many things that lie in our minds that seem to be "perfectly reasonable" assumptions and yet are founded on the basic untruths of the serpent of Eden.
Somewhere along the line this created angel, Satan, imagined himself to be God's equal, but he falls so far short in every way. For one thing, he is a created being who has no powers of creation himself.
But his self deception about this makes his lies especially cunning and dangerous. His lies were successful in the Garden with one of God's most wonderful, perfect creations Eve. And even today those same lies prevail anywhere the light of Christ does not shine. Lets look today at the challenge Eve faced that terrible day. What was the first question the Serpent asked of her? Did God really say?....