Summary: This message was laid on my heart as I began to explore the devices the devil uses on Christians to weaken them and their witness.
#1-THE DEVIL’S DEVICES--PRIDE [Lk 18]
Intro: I would like to begin a series of messages which I will entitle: The Devil’s Devices” which I take from the Apostle Paul’s words to those believers at Corinth in his second letter. “Lest satan should get an advantage of us, for we are not ignorant of his devices”.
After re-reading that word “devices”..*Def: “A contrivance or an invention serving a particular purpose-a technique or means-A plan or scheme, especially a malign one”. There you have it-that’s what he is about! After one comes to Christ as their Saviour and Lord, he knows he can never again “have you” but he for sure can “misalign you”.
The longer I live the more keenly aware I am of how simple the devil’s are! And he uses them repetitively and yet we act as if we have never had him afflict us in such a way. I am convinced that the only way we will overcome his devices is to learn not to be “ignorant” and most of our ignorance comes from not knowing and appropriating God’s Word. You’ll recall that it was God’s Word which Jesus himself employed to overcome the devil in the wilderness temptation.
See-everyone has had or will have a problem with this thing called problem of pride-no one is exempt.
ILLS: A minister received a Christmas card with a note in it from a lady in his congregation. He said she was very complimentary about his preaching, & compared him with Billy Graham. She finished by writing, "I think you are one of the really great preachers of all time." Later that day, when he showed the note to his wife, she asked, "Who is that woman?" He replied, "She is a very intelligent woman in the congregation who loves great preaching." He then asked his wife, "How many great preachers do you suppose there really are in the world?" She replied, "One less than you think”. And I only tell that one to illustrate the truth that-everyone (including preachers) have a problem with pride.
Read once: “God pickles the proud and preserves the foolish.
Did you hear about the clever salesman who closed hundreds of sales with this line: "Let me show you something several of your neighbors said you couldn’t afford."
Pride is the only disease that makes everyone sick but the one who has it. What is pride? Pride means to act arrogantly; a high opinion of ones worth, self conceit. Mary Lewis once was quoted as saying: "Pride, the idolatrous worship of self, is the national religion of hell." Hear the words of Solomon: “Pride cometh before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall”. Prov.16:18 And what of the story Jesus told of the prideful farmer in Luke 12:16
Pride is very competitive by nature. Competitive in the sense that you’ll stop at nothing to make sure you are always on the winning side because you don’t want to look inferior. Or you’ll stop at nothing to make sure you are seen as the most important or the prettiest in the room.
ILLS:: A young woman went to her pastor and said, "Pastor, I have a besetting sin, and I want your help. I come to church on Sunday and can’t help thinking I’m the prettiest girl in the congregation. I know I ought not think that, but I can’t help it. I want you to help me with it." The pastor replied, "Mary, don’t worry about it. In your case it’s not a sin. It’s just a horrible mistake."
“Pride is the only disease that makes everyone sick but the one who has it.” God has some very explicit things to say about pride that we need to pay close attention to. Let’s look at those verses. Proverbs 6:13
SOME STATEMENTS I FEEL DEFINE PRIDE: “An inordinate amount of self-esteem, puffed up, stiff-necked and stuck-up”. When we think of pride we think of people that are loud-mouthed, obnoxious, and outlandish person. In reality most are very meek, mild, calm, cool, and very calculated. Pride blinds itself to its own presence.
Pride tells us that we have done all that we could, even though our walk doesn’t show it. Pride is the forerunner of all sins. Pride puts the “ME’FIRST” theory into play, whether it’s first in church, family, of even your job.
Pride whispers to the over-spender “You deserve it”, even though you’re maxed out on your credit cards, but “you deserve it.”
Pride whispers to the Alcoholic “go ahead you can stop anytime you want.”
Pride whispers to the drug addict: “Do a little bit more Cocaine, you can stop anytime you want.
Pride whispers to the Control Freak “If you don’t orchestrate their life who will.”
Pride whispers to the Blamer “It’s the Pastor’s fault”, it’s the Deacons fault for why you act like you do. It’s your parents fault, It’s your ex-wife, or your ex-husbands fault.