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Satan – Charles Stanley

This Bible Study was taught by John Green in Sunday School.  It is based on the book, “When the Enemy Attacks” written by Charles Stanley.

Satan – Week 1

Satan has been given a number of names over the years.  The word satan in Hebrew translates as ‘the Adversary’.  Other names for Satan include:

1 Peter 5:8 –            The devil

Genesis 3:1 –           The serpent that led Eve astray

2 Kings 1:3 –           Beelzebub or Baal-Zebub

Isaiah 14:12 –          Lucifer

Eph. 6:12 (NKJV) –  Prince of Darkness

Eph. 2:2 –                 Prince of the power of the air

Rev. 12:7-9 –           the Dragon

You may have heard the name, Mephistopheles.  This  was a name used by Faust in his tragedy about making a deal with the devil.

Lucifer is the Bible name for one of God’s archangels who rebelled against God and was cast to the earth where he does his work as Satan or the devil.  (Isaiah 14:12-17)  In Isaiah 14:3, Isaiah appears to be talking about the king of Babylon.  By verse 12, he has transitioned to be speaking of Satan.

“It is true that the king of literal Babylon shined brightly among the men of his day, and fell as hard and as completely as if a man were to fall from heaven. But there was a far more brightly shining being who inhabited heaven, and fell even more dramatically – the king of spiritual Babylon, Satan.  (Guzik)

Years ago in our study of Daniel (10:13), the archangel Michael was the protector or prince of Israel.  Isaiah refers to Lucifer was the protector or prince of Babylon.  Later in Chapter 10 of Daniel we are reminded that even though there are physical battles going on here on earth, there are also spiritual battles also happening.  Verses 20-21 of Daniel 10 tell us that there are more of these archangels battling in the spiritual realm.

The name ‘devil’ comes from the Greek “diabolos” meaning ‘slanderer’.  It is also the root from which we get our English word ‘diabolical’.

All of the evil that we have seen since the beginning of man has a name, or many names as we have seen, it is Satan.  He is completely evil.  As righteous as God is, Satan is that evil.  He seeks to rule as God in the spiritual realm.  We see this desire in Isaiah 14:14, where Satan has said that “I will make myself like the Most High.’”.

When you first read Ezekiel 28:11-19, it sounds like Ezekiel is talking about the king of Tyre but as we look further into these verses, we realize that it could also be about Satan.  Tyre was a vile place known for getting rich and then exploiting its neighbors. Ancient writers say that Tyre was a “city filled with unscrupulous merchants”.  It was filled with religious idolatry and sexual immorality.  By verse 13, you realize that the king of Tyre is being compared to Satan.  The king would not have been in the Garden of Eden.  He was not a Cherub standing guard.  He could not have been booted out of Heaven.  Ezekiel had to be talking about Satan.

Isaiah 45:7 says “The One forming light and creating darkness, Causing well-being and creating calamity;  I am the Lord who does all these.”  It sounds like God pours out evil.

Guzik on Isaiah 45:7 – “But God has no opposite. Satan is not and has never been God’s opposite. There is one God. God is not the author of evil; evil is never “original,” but always a perversion of an existing good. Yet God is the allower of evil, and He uses it to accomplish His eternal purpose of bringing together all things in Jesus (Ephesians 3:8-11 and 1:9-10). If God could further His eternal purpose by allowing His Son to die a wicked, unjust death on a cross, then He knows how to use what He allows for His eternal purpose.”

So the Bible teaches two things about evil.  First, evil has a name and it is Satan.  Second, our battle against evil is a spiritual one.  Paul had realized we are in a spiritual battle before he wrote the letter to the Ephesians.  He warned us and the Ephesians.  He said in Ephesians 6:12 that our battle wasn’t against flesh and blood but it was against “the rulers of this darkness, the powers of this darkness, the world forces of this darkness and the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

“He can and will attempt to drag you down into such deep bondage that you will lose your joy in living. Some may call this bondage oppression, depression, or addiction. If the devil can pull you into bondage, you will have no peace, no zest for living, and perhaps even no will to continue living. You will struggle continually with desires that are not met, drives that are not satisfied, dreams that are not realized, and a destiny that is unfulfilled. The devil will do his utmost to completely destroy anything that is essential for abundant life. “ (Stanley)

Chapter 2 – The Nature of the Enemy

I have often said that it would be easier for us if Satan wore a red suit and walked around with a pitchfork.  This picture causes us to either think that Satan is weak or that he is not real.  He is real because the Bible tells us so.

Peter warned us of the devil in 1 Peter 5:8.  He calls the devil a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.  He is not talking about a physical attack, he is referring to a spiritual one.  Besides getting us to do all sorts of wrong, Satan has vile motives for attacking us.

His motives include:

  1. He wants us to reject Jesus as our savior.

By accepting the salvation that comes from Jesus, John 3:16 tells us that we will not perish but have everlasting life.  Satan does not want us to claim that salvation.

  1. He wants us to refuse to believe in him (Satan).

People believe that if we deny the existence of God then we are not accountable to Him.  If we deny the existence of Satan then we are likely to fall into all of his traps and deceptions.

  1. He wants us to end up where he ends up, in the Lake of fire.

Satan’s end is set.  John tells us that Satan will end up in the Lake of fire along with those that have not accepted the grace of God through Jesus.

  1. He wants the opposite of everything that God wants for us.

2 Peter 3:9 tells us that God is not willing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance.  So Satan wants us to perish with him and for no one to come to repentance.

If a person does not believe in the devil, he’ll never seek to understand the traps he continues to fall into. He’ll never seek to understand how to conquer the negative, debilitating, addictive, downward spiral of temptation.

The Bible and even Jesus tells us that Satan is real.  Since Satan is real we should be asking ourselves, “How do I withstand his attacks?”

The first way is to realize that Satan in not omnipresent.  He cannot be everywhere at once like God.  Satan has an army of evil helpers, spirits (demons).  These helpers are as committed to evil as Satan is.  These minions follow Satan and have the same goals as Satan.  They were willing to leave Heaven to serve Satan in his battle against man and God.

Ephesians 6:12 tells us “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”

We are not battling someone that we can see, Satan is invisible.  He is fully spirit and not flesh and blood.  Satan is not alone, he has his minions to serve him.

In John 8:44, Jesus tells us that the devil is a murderer and a liar.


John 8:44 “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks [a]a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies”.

In John 10:10, Jesus tells us that the devil is a thief.

John 10:10 – “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and [a]have it abundantly.”

2 Corinthians 11:3, Paul says that the devil (the serpent in Eden) is deceiving, crafty, leads us astray or away from God (corrupted).

2 Corinthians 11:3 – “But I am afraid, lest as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds should be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.”

“The person who is corrupted or seduced by a temptation follows the passions and desires of his own self rather than the will and commands of God. “ (Stanley)

The devil strikes at our weaknesses and not our strengths.  The devil is completely evil.   Even when he uses good things to lure us, his final intent is evil.  He is trying to lead us away from God.

Luke 15:10 tells us that “there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”  We have to assume that there is similar celebration among Satan and his minions when someone chooses to reject Christ.

Satan never gives up on his pursuit of us.  Always remember what 1 Peter 5:8, “Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”  Just because Peter wrote it more than 2000 years ago, it doesn’t make it any less true.

“You will never fully eliminate the devil’s temptation from your life. No matter how mature you may become spiritually, he still has access to you. . .  There will never be a point at which you cease to be attacked. “ (Stanley)

Consider that Satan tempted Eve in the Garden, God had a conversation with Satan about Job, then he showed up to tempt Jesus and now he is constantly attacking us today.

Romans 8:38-39 says “For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Satan can do nothing to remove the Holy Spirit from our lives once we claim the power of Jesus as savior in our lives.  We cannot lose our salvation.

Satan knows that God is in control and that he cannot take what God will not allow.  Consider what went on with God and Satan regarding Job.  God had to allow Satan to attack Job.  We cannot lose our salvation but that doesn’t stop Satan.  He continues to attack us in order to undermine our dedication to Jesus.  He wants our service of Christ to be weakened or ineffective.  By doing so, our voice about grace through faith will be softened or not heard.  If we live our lives discouraged or ineffective, our lives will be miserable and less fulfilling.  Satan will fill your mind with doubts, and all manner of sickness, tragedy, and crises.


Satan wants to destroy our body, mind, or spirit, or all three.

Remember he wants to keep us from seeking and doing God’s will.  God has a plan for our lives and if we fail then God is not glorified.  Satan seeks to replace God in your life. Unlike God, he is good with any havoc that he can bring into our lives.  He will even accept us denying Satan’s or God’s existence.

“The devil desires not only to destroy your possessions, your career, your family, your reputation in the community. He seeks to destroy who you are. He wants to demolish your character. He seeks to destroy your peace, joy, happiness, contentment, enthusiasm for life, willingness to take godly risks, generosity, and all other emotional states that are healthy or good.” (Stanley)

Satan’s attack is not a single event.  “As long as you are alive and the devil exists, you will experience spiritual attacks.” (Stanley)


What is a satanic attack? Charles Stanley defines a satanic attack as: “ A satanic attack is a deliberate, willful, intentional, and well-designed act intended to bring harm to a person in any way—physical, mental, economic, relational, or spiritual.”


He has four objectives:

  1. Satan seeks to draw us away from God. That’s always his ultimate goal.

  2. Satan seeks to prevent us from doing God’s purpose and plan for our lives. He seeks to get us off track and out of the will of God for our lives.

  3. Satan seeks to deny God the glory, honor, and praise due Him as we live godly lives of faith and trust in Him.

  4. Satan seeks to destroy us—literally and eternally.

Another important scripture that we should memorize or keep close to our hearts is John 10:27-30

John 10:27 “My sheep listen to My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give them eternal life, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

Verse 28b tells us that even Satan cannot take away our salvation.  Satan cannot undo the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives once we claim Jesus.

Charles Stanley says “The devil does have the power to attack us and tempt us. He has the power to deceive us and oppress us. In so doing, he has the power to:

  • destroy the quality of our lives. He can send sickness and injury our way, to affect our physical, mental and financial well-being and our relationships.

  • attack our peace and our joy. He can send agitation into the calm waters of our lives. He can stir up trouble for us and cause us to find ourselves in turmoil.

  • use unbelievers or weak believers to harm us physically, but more often, in the things they say and do that undermine our reputations.

  • bring confusion, anger, and frustration into situations and relationships—often for no apparent reason. The devil is a master at causing misunderstandings.

  • decrease our witness for Christ on this earth and diminish our reward in heaven.


Matthew 17:14:22 tells us about a demon possessed boy that even the disciples could not help.  Satan is the most powerful of all demons.  What chance do we have against such a powerful being.  James 4:7 tells us to “Submit to God, But resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”

“We cannot defeat the devil by human intellect, cleverness, or force of personality. Defeating the devil is the work of Jesus Christ alone, and that work has been accomplished on the cross.” (Stanley)

Remember God / Jesus have no equals.  Satan is not as powerful as Jesus.  Psalm 18:2 tells us where we should go to defeat Satan. “The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my savior, My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”

Jesus defeated Satan when He rose from the death.  God’s “rest of the story” tells us that Satan will lose.  Our stance must always be, “I cannot defeat the devil. But I can resist him and trust Jesus Christ to defeat him.” (Stanley)

My favorite verse in the Bible is Philippians 4:13.  With the power than comes from Christ we are invincible.  Our enemy is strong but our Savior has unimaginable power.

Chapter 3 – The Outcome of the Battle

What “Battle” are we talking about?  It is not some future battle, like the Battle of Armageddon but a daily battle to stay on the right track to reach heaven.

1 Timothy 6:12 says “Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” (NASB)

It is the battle that we face every day.  It is against Satan.  It is Good vs Evil.  It is a battle to God’s will.

Ultimately, we are on the winning side.  Remember, Satan wants to be in control but from our study of the Book of Revelation, Satan is defeated, Jesus wins.

Each of the following verses tell us about the “Battle” between Good and Evil.

  1. Luke 10:18 – Satan was kicked out of Heaven for the first time. (Jesus speaking)

  2. Matthew 28:7 – The tomb was empty. Jesus had defeated death and sin.

  3. Revelation 12:12 – Satan’s time is short.

  4. Job 1:10-12 – Satan has to ask permission.

  5. Revelation 20:1 – It is an angel that defeats Satan.

  6. Revelation 20:10 – Satan will be thrown into the Lake of Fire

The central question we must ask is always this: “Who is in control?”  If you think that you are in control of your life and what happens to you then you are in trouble.

If you understand that God is in control of all things and that He has a plan for your life, then in every situation, no matter how big or small, you can confidently say “God has got this!”  Paul believed that way.

He says so in Romans 8:28, “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”


If we believe this way and believe the outcome of a difficult situation is in God’s hands then there are certain truths that we have:

  1. If we prayed about the problem then we can have peace knowing we gave it to God.

  2. If we enlist the help of other believers who prayed about it and they too will feel peace.

  3. We can know that we had done everything that we can do to ensure success.

  4. We can fully trust in God to be in control and to accomplish His plans and purposes for my life.

Charles Stanley says “If you are living your life in this way—praying about every major decision, walking in the peace of God as you go about your daily routine, doing what you know to do to live safely and with commonsense precautions, and trusting God to be in control always and to accomplish His plan for your life—you are living the way God intends! The attacks that may come your way are not attacks that you could have avoided.”

Your response to Satan’s attacks determines what happens.  The way we respond determines whether:

  1. Our faith will be strengthened or weakened

  2. Our witness of God’s power and presence in our lives will be greater or lesser

  3. God receives greater or lesser glory and praise

  4. Unsaved people are more or less inclined to trust in Jesus

Just as with Adam and Eve in the Garden or Job or every other person that has lived, Satan will attack you.  We live in a fallen age.  The world and man’s history is made up of sinful men and women.  No one can avoid the devil’s external attacks.

External attacks happen. The devil has the power to trip us up, inflict harm upon us, and cause evil to adversely affect our lives.

John 10:10 tells us, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”


1 John 3:8 says, “8 the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.


These verses tell us that Satan comes to steal and kill and destroy.  The one who does what is sinful, is of the devil.  Sin is nothing new to Satan, he has been sinning from the beginning.

On the positive side, these verses tell us that Jesus came to earth so believers may have life, and have it to the full.  They also tell us that Jesus came to destroy the devil’s work.

Satan does not leave anyone out with his attacks.  He even attacks God’s chosen ones.  Each of the Biblical figures had bad things happen to them even though God chose them for a higher purpose.

  1. Joseph, the son of Jacob – He was thrown in a pit, sold as a slave, falsely accused, spent years in a prison for a crime he didn’t commit.

  2. Elijah, the prophet – Jezebel persecuted him.  He hid.

  3. Rahab, the prostitute – All of the people from Jericho were killed except her family

  4. Even Paul – Read 2 Corinthians 11:24-28 endured persecution for Jesus’ sake.

We can and must recognize that no matter how severe the external attack, God is in control; the devil is not. And because God is in control . . .

  1. The attack of the enemy is limited in scope.

  2. The attack of the enemy is limited in duration.

  3. The good that God has planned will be far greater than the results of the attack.

  4. God has planned a benefit that will strike a blow against the devil, bring about eternal blessing to God’s children, and bring God glory.

“Have you considered My servant Job?”  Job’s story was about a man under spiritual attack.  With all that Satan did to Job, what was Job’s response at first (read Job 1:21) “The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD.”  He praised God.  Even Job’s wife suggested that he curse God and die. Job refused.  Job’s friends weren’t any better.  They accused him of sin, Job 19:2–3.  More intense attack, Satan can use anyone against you.  Yet Job persevered.

Throughout the story of Job, we learn the following things about Satan’s attacks:

  • Job 1:12 – God put limits on what Satan could do. Satan might have been given the ability to destroy Job’s possessions and afflict Job’s body, but he could not lay claim to Job’s life or his spirit.

  • Job 2:13 – God put time limits on Job’s suffering. He did not allow Satan to bring more suffering into Job’s life than Job could endure.

  • Job 14:10-17 – God rewarded Job. God turned the situation for good, rewarding Job with far more than he had lost.

  • God received glory from Job’s life. Thousands of years later, we are still using how Job maintained his faith and trust in God even in the worst of times. Job proved God’s faithfulness and God’s omnipotent, omniscient goodness.

1 Corinthians 10:13 – “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.”

Often we miss interpret this verse, it is talking about temptation but we associate it with difficulties.  It does not say that God will not give us more strife in our life than we can bear.

“God has promised to supervise all temptation that comes at us through the world, the flesh or the devil. He promises to limit it according to our capability to endure it – according to our capability as we rely on Him, not our capability as we rely only on ourselves.” (Guzik)

Whenever the devil strikes us, we can take heart that God has a purpose in allowing the devil to act. The purpose is a divine one that we may not understand but that, nonetheless, is for our good or the good of others. The grief, suffering, or pain is for a season only. The end result, as we remain faithful to God, will bring glory to Him.

Never lose sight that God is in control of your life—all of your life, all of the time. He has a purpose and a plan that is unfolding as you continue to praise and thank Him, and to trust Him step by step.

You can always count on these things when the enemy attacks you.  You can be certain that:

  1. Isaiah 59:1 – God will help you. God is holy, omnipotent, omniscient, and immutable. The Bible tells us, “Behold, the LORD’S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear” (Isa. 59:1). The Lord desires to help you. He is waiting for you to ask Him!

  2. The attack will come to an end. No temptation or crisis lasts forever. A temptation may come again in another form, or come again after a period of time, but every temptation has a time limit put on it.

  3. You will be stronger in your spirit after you have resisted an attack of the enemy.

Never lose sight of the truth that God and Satan are not equals. Satan is not omnipotent (all-powerful). He is not omniscient (all-knowing). He is not infinite. God—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—is omnipotent, omniscient, and infinite.

Remember Satan is a defeated foe. Rev. 20:10 tells us so.  It says,

And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

God desires for us to choose to love Him, accept Jesus as Savior and follow Jesus as Lord.  But if a person willfully and consciously chooses not to receive Jesus, God will allow that person to make such a choice.

Chapter 4 – The Enemy’s Snares

The apostle Paul referred to the devil as wily or scheming (Eph. 6:11). NASB NIV (Schemes) KJV NKJV (Wiles)  “Wiles are devious or cunning strategies employed in manipulating or persuading someone to do what one wants.”  (Internet definition)

Much of the time the devil ensnares us one small lie at a time. John 8:44 tells us – “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks  a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”

The devil sets these schemes or snares against us (All start with D):

  • Debate

  • Division

  • Doubt

  • Deception


Debate shows up when we are sharing the Gospel or even discussing the Gospel with a nonbeliever.

Charles Stanley says “If you find that you are in a conversation in which a person continually interjects “but” and “what if ” and “but what about,” recognize that the devil is using that person—not for an honest discussion aimed at getting to the truth of an issue, but a debate solely for the pleasure of disagreement.”

The Devil is the master of debate, you can’t win a debate with the devil. It is best to walk away. Say to the person who attempts to debate with you, “Maybe we can discuss this some other time.”


The devil wants to divide people.  Look at the United States today.  The US has become ineffective because of the division.  As a Church we too can become ineffective at reaching people for Christ if we are at odds with each other.  Often because we disagree on a few minor details in theology we can’t get together at all.

The devil seeks to cause division in any ministry outreach.  One organization that is gaining ground in Ohio is Revive Ohio.  It hasn’t come to Licking County but in 2019 it started in Knox County.  Reaching people starts with the basic foundation of Christianity, a prayer.

“It is critically important in defeating the devil that we continually seek to unite with and remain united with believers who truly are seeking to follow and serve Christ Jesus. We must become yoked with those who are joined to Christ.” (Charles Stanley)

Bible Study Fellowship has been successful at breaking down the barriers of religion.  Men and women of all denominations get together and study the Word of God.

Remember brothers and sisters in Christ are not our enemies.  Many of us may even work with Methodists or Catholics.

The real enemy is the devil and his forces, at work behind the scenes in every case of spiritual assault.

One of the things that divides us are accusations. Accusations are a key tool of Satan.  The Bible refers to Satan as “the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night” (Rev. 12:10).  Consider how you feel when someone has falsely or even rightly accused you of something.  You feel backed into a corner, ready to fight back.  Relationships can be destroyed over accusations.  That is division.

WHAT UNITES US? If accusation divides us, what unites us? The love of God.  Read Romans 8:35–39.  Paul tells us that even though there are many things that divide us, we cannot be separated from the love of God.  God loves everyone and we are to love each other.  The love of God is the one place where believers can have common ground.

What do these Scriptures as about showing love?

  1. Matthew 22:37-39 – Love God and love others

  2. Proverbs 25:21-22 – Take care of your enemy

  3. 1 Corinthians 13:2b – Without love we are nothing

Words of love and acceptance in Christ Jesus produce the exact opposite of accusations.


I have heard someone that attended this church say, “The Bible is just an old book that is not applicable today.”  That is Satan speaking.  If Satan can get us to doubt or not accept certain scriptures, then he is winning.

What do these verses say about the Word of God?

  1. Hebrews 4:12 – It is sharper than a two-edged sword, able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

  2. Psalm 119:9-11 – A young person can stay pure by obeying your word. (NLT)

  3. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 – All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;

    (ESV – God breathed)

“The truth is, the Bible does relate to us today. All of the authors wrote under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. He doesn’t make mistakes, and He is always timely and eternal.” (Charles Stanley)

There’s ultimately only one “different opinion,” and that’s the devil’s opinion.

Even in the Garden, Satan caused doubt in what God said.  He asked Eve, “Indeed, has God said, ‘“You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’? (Genesis 3) Satan made Eve doubt what God had said and we are still paying for it.

Satan’s favorite use of doubt is making us question our salvation.  He puts a thought in our minds, “Are you really saved?, Really?”

A key message of the New Testament is “Christ is in me, and I am in Christ.” The devil will do his utmost to test that central truth of your relationship with Christ Jesus.

When Jesus was baptized, He experienced a strong affirmation from heaven. See Luke 3:21–22.  Immediately after this, Jesus went into the wilderness.  The first seven words out of Satan’s mouth? “If You are the Son of God.”   Satan attacks us the same way.  He tries to get us to doubt our relationship with God.  To do this he tells 3 main lies.

Lie #1: Saved people don’t sin.

They still are human and live in fleshly bodies with natural desires.  If this is true then there are no saved people.

Lie #2: Some sins are beyond forgiveness

1 John 1:9 tell us that if we confess them, then they are forgiven.

God’s mercy and patience with us are beyond measure.

Lie #3: God gets weary of people who sin and repent repeatedly, and He eventually stops forgiving their sins.

Unlike humans, God’s love is perfect.  He may be disappointed at our sin but He will never give up on us.  This is what grace is:

God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.  As the hymn says, “Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe.”  Even though we are weak, we have to remember what 2 Corinthians 12:9 tells us “And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.”

We can never be perfect, God knows that we will fail and He will be there for us.  John 8:36 tells us the way to be free from our sin.  “So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.”  There is only one way to get rid of our sin and that is to give it God.  1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 


We aren’t freed to sin again but we are made right with God.  We are freed to do our best NOT to sin. If we do sin, we are to confess it to the Lord and ask forgiveness.  It wouldn’t hurt to ask Him to strengthen you to not give in to that temptation in the future.  As it says in the Lord’s prayer, “and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” 

Charles Stanley says “Salvation isn’t based upon a feeling, and it isn’t assured on the basis of a feeling. Salvation is based upon an act of your will in receiving what God has graciously offered to you! Salvation is the work of the Holy Spirit—forgiving you, cleansing you, and sealing you in Christ Jesus forever. Emotions come and go. They rise and fall. Salvation isn’t rooted in emotion. Finally you didn’t save yourself, and you can’t unsave yourself. “

If you continually question your salvation or don’t believe you are genuinely saved, you can always go to the Lord today or pray talk to Pastor Brian and make a recommitment of your faith in Jesus.

Doubting your salvation prevents you from being all you can be for Christ.  It makes you question everything in your life.  Will God really take away MY sin?  How can I talk to others about Christ, I’m not that strong of a Christian?

Satan often focuses on baptism.  He will say “Look at the number of ways that other churches baptize.”  We baptize by immersion because that was most likely how Jesus was baptized but John 3:5 says “Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” Jesus put no specifications on the baptism, it says baptized of water and the spirit, no other specifications.

Satan will try to get you to doubt the importance of going to church.  He will make you think:

“If I miss today, it is just one week.”

“Sunday is the only day that I get to sleep in.”

. . .

Hebrews 10:25 says that we should NOT forsake getting together.  That means we should do our best to get together every week to encourage and be encourage as we worship.  Everyone is being attacked by Satan.

“Satan ultimately will try to get you to doubt any and every aspect of the Christian life so that you will devalue, dismiss, or diminish the importance of the most basic Christian disciplines: offering thanksgiving, praise, and prayer; reading and studying the Bible; attending church; giving tithes and offerings; witnessing about Christ Jesus; and using your spiritual gifts to bless others.” (Stanley)

If we let Satan get a foothold in our lives, he will weaken our walk with Jesus/God.  I find that if I miss my morning Bible Study, I don’t feel as close to God.  God doesn’t go anywhere, it is Satan getting that foothold.


Charles Stanley says “Deception is a lie about the true reality of something. Deception occurs when we believe things are good, but they aren’t; when we believe things look hopeless, but they aren’t; when we think something is true, but it isn’t; when something looks too good to be true and turns out not to be good at all.”

Deception is probably Satan’s most used snare. Revelation 12:9 tells us that Satan “deceives the whole world”.  Satan not only uses the most obvious lie, he uses the “little” lie.  The one that is just one degree from the truth.

Here are two prominent lies of the devil:

  1. “You don’t have time for that.”

  2. “Don’t think about tomorrow.”

“Sin leads to death, destruction, and a diminishing of every good thing. It destroys relationships, reputations, and the opportunity to reap great blessings. It hinders growth and keeps us from fulfilling our God-given destiny. It destroys inner peace, joy, and feelings of deep satisfaction. It diminishes self-worth and dashes hopes, dreams, and goals. Sin shackles and limits us in ways that cause us to retreat into ourselves and to hide from the world.” (Stanley)

To deceive us, Satan may say, “This might happen to some people, but it won’t happen to you.”

Genesis 3:4 says, “The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die!”    The devil told Eve that “Surely you won’t die.”  The death was not immediate.  It was the beginning of death in the world.  At that point her body started down the road to death.  As an older man, I realize what this truly means.  At some point in your life you realize that yesterday your body was better than it is today and tomorrow it will be worse.  The best physical day that you have is today.  Sounds morbid.  But that is what the warning from God to Adam and Eve was.  Death entered the world and eventually we will all pass through death’s portal barring the Rapture.

Romans 6:23 tells us that “The wages of sin is death”  We all will die because sin entered into the world and we all sin.  There is a sin debt that is owed and death is the price.

Satan will also tell you lies about Jesus.  What lies about salvation God or Jesus have you heard?

  1. “Jesus isn’t the only way to God.”

  2. “All religions are the same—they all lead to God.”

  3. “Jesus was just a good man who died a martyr’s death.”

  4. “All religions have the same god.”

2 Corinthians 4:3–4 tells us that the devil seeks to keep unbelievers in their condition by blinding their minds to the truth.  It says “3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, 4 in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

Satan hates the Word of God, hates the name of Jesus and especially hates those who believe in Jesus and know the Word!

John 8:31-32 tells us how to be free.  Jesus sets us free.  These verses say, “31 So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”

Chapter 5 – Learning to Discern

Charles Stanley defines “Discernment” as “the ability to judge a situation accurately—to see the full reality of a situation, relationship, experience, or circumstance. It is the capacity to understand accurately and clearly what is, to see the truth of things as they are from God’s viewpoint. Discernment for the believer is seeing and understanding as God sees and understands. It is the ability to make godly judgments and right appraisals.”

If we are to judge behavior as believers we must know what is   behavior or bad behavior.  In order to know the difference we must study God’s Word.  Listening to one sermon a week is not enough.

1 Peter 4:17 (NASB) says, “For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?”

Believers are to have sound judgment based upon accurate discernment.  Ezekiel 44:23–24 tells us that there we are to judge ourselves now.  How can we live godly lives if we do not know what a godly life is.  God’s Word helps us to discern the right path to travel.  Nonbelievers will be judged in the end by God.

Ezekiel 44:23-24 – “23 Moreover, they shall teach My people the difference between the holy and the profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean. 24 In a dispute they shall take their stand to judge; they shall judge it according to My ordinances. They shall also keep My laws and My statutes in all My appointed feasts and sanctify My sabbaths.

Romans 1:28-32 (Paul) tells us and the Romans that we are not to engage in a long list of improper behaviors or what the NLT translates as “all kinds of wickedness” and most of all we are not  “encourage others to do them.”

Romans 1:28-32 says, “28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

We need recognize four aspects of discernment:

  1. Discernment between good and evil

We need the ability to discern between good and evil.  Satan has the ability to make what is evil seem good. He becomes the wolf that put on sheep’s clothing.

(1 Cor. 15:33–34 says, “Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals. Become sober-minded as you ought (NLT says “Think carefully about what is right”), and stop sinning; for some have no knowledge of God. I speak this to your shame.”

  1. Discernment between what is real and what is illusion

We need to be able to tell if what we are seeing and hearing is fact or fiction.

Some people may come into our lives and give the appearance of good character—only to be shown later to have had very bad motives.

  1. Discernment between what is good and what is best

            What does John 10:10b tell us about what Jesus wants for us?

            “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”

“God does not desire that any person live a so-so, average life. He desires for every person to live an excellent life—morally excellent, spiritually excellent, relationally excellent. It isn’t a matter of how much money or material goods a person has—but the degree of love, joy, and peace a person has. (Stanley)

  1. Discernment between our desires and God’s plan

Ask God to reveal His plan to you. Ask Him to show you the talents He has built into your life. Trust Him to show you how to develop those talents and use them to make a difference for Christ Jesus in this world. Don’t settle for your own dead-end goals—get in line with God’s goals and be all that He created you to be!

Discernment is a three-way key—it is a key to understanding God’s will, having good judgment, and knowing God’s voice.


Discernment is key in discovering and understanding God’s will for your life.  There was an old adage that says, “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.”

We can’t trust our feelings because feelings can be very deceptive. They are temporary. What feels good in one minute doesn’t necessarily feel good two hours later.  We have to have discernment.


Have you ever watched those info-mercials.   “If you buy this product, it will make you …”  You wonder who buys those products.  People without discernment do.  Discernment is key to having good judgment.


Discernment helps us determine if God is speaking to us, or if the voice we are hearing is not of God.  Remember, deception is one of Satan’s tools.

The Lord said that He speaks in a still, small voice. (See 1 Kings 19:12.)

The Lord also said that He is our Shepherd, and His sheep, that’s us, we will know His voice. (See John 10:4.)

Here are a few things to help us know that it is God speaking:

  1. The Lord will never impose on us something that hampers us from using the talents, skills, and resources that He has given to us.

Cults are notorious for this.  They tend to force their will on their followers.  God will never force His Will on us.  When we were created He gave us free will.  Just as a parent wants their children to show and do things because they love them, God desires that we openly voice our praise and thanksgiving to Him.

When we studied Galatians, Paul worked very hard to teach them that God desires that we live in grace, not legalism imposed by the personal preferences of other people.

  1. The Lord will never speak something to us that is contrary to Scripture.

This is another reason that we need to study God’s Word.  If we know what the Bible says then we can check the message against it—and not just against one isolated verse that may seem to verify or confirm what you want the message to be.

Trust the Holy Spirit on a daily basis to guide you in EVERY aspect of your daily lives.  John 14:16 tells us that the Father will send a “another Helper”, that He may be with you “forever”.

A number of times while walking with friends, one of the children walking with the group has reached up and grabbed my hand thinking that I was their dad.  They quickly pull away when they realize it is not Dad.  We can do the same thing if we do not discern God’s voice or God’s will and use good judgment daily, we can end up following Satan.


I read two books written by John MacArthur, “The Gospel According to Jesus” and “The Gospel According to Paul”.  One of the key differences that MacArthur points out between the two messages about the Gospel is that Jesus demands obedience.  Charles Stanley says, “Spiritual discernment works fully only when we desire to obey and actually do obey God’s directives.”

In order to better develop your spiritual discernment we must first recognize that it is something to be desired and sought. Just like knowledge we don’t necessarily get it when accept Jesus Christ as our Savior.

The Holy Spirit fills us with His presence, and He is the Author of spiritual discernment, but the ability to discern comes as part of the process of our minds and hearts being renewed. Ephesians 4:21-24 says “21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus, 22 that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, 23 and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.”

Psalm 119:66 tells us to pray for spiritual discernment.  It says we should pray “Teach me good judgment and knowledge”.   This verse says, “Teach me good discernment and knowledge,  For I believe in Your commandments.”  (NASB) The word ‘discernment’ and ‘judgment’ are much the same.

Additionally, Charles Stanley says, “we must learn to rely upon the Holy Spirit to be the Source of truth in us.  Jesus taught that the Holy Spirit would be in us, with us, and upon us. The Holy Spirit determines our spiritual gifts, instructs us in the Word of God, empowers and energizes us, and is our Helper in all situations. The Holy Spirit reveals what Jesus would do and say in any given situation, and enables us to discern the truth in all situations.” (See John 14–16.)

1 Corinthians 2:9–12 says, “but just as it is written,

Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard,
And which have not entered the heart of man,
All that God has prepared for those who love Him.”

10 For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God. 11 For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God,

Paul is telling us that the Holy Spirit reveals to us the truly important things of life—the things that are of God and that have eternal benefit. As believers, we have God inside us, not a portion of God.  With the Holy Spirit living in us we have the ability to understand God’s Will and God’s Word and we have a perfect connection with God.

Unfortunately, along with the good we get the less desired.  Since the Holy Spirit lives in us, He knows our sinful motivations, attitudes, and beliefs.  He will reveal to you when you sin or are about to sin.

Stanley says, “We must rely on the Holy Spirit if we truly are going to have a renewed heart and mind and be able to develop spiritual maturity so we aren’t led around by the devil as if we were on his leash.”

Finally, we must be willing to study the Word of God. Studying the Bible is the only way to know and understand God.  You must allow the Holy Spirit to guide you in what verses to study and how to interpret them.

Psalm 119:97–105 says, “97 O how I love Your law!
It is my meditation all the day.
98 Your commandments make me wiser than my enemies,
For they are ever mine.
99 I have more insight than all my teachers,
For Your testimonies are my meditation.
100 I understand more than the aged,
Because I have observed Your precepts.
101 I have restrained my feet from every evil way,
That I may keep Your word.
102 I have not turned aside from Your ordinances,
For You Yourself have taught me.
103 How sweet are Your words to my taste!
Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
104 From Your precepts I get understanding;
Therefore I hate every false way.

105 Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.

At that time the Law was the Word of God.  The psalmist knew the great value of God’s Word in developing discernment.  We are to study God’s word to get understanding (v 104) and guidance (v 98) which are discernment.

Verse 105 says “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.”

John 14:16 tells us that Jesus said “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever;.  It told us that the Holy Spirit would be with us forever. The Holy Spirit’s help in our lives is ongoing. We never fully know everything we need to know.

“Discernment is God’s gift made available to every believer, but as is true for all gifts from God, we must actively receive this gift and do so by faith. We must ask God to impart His discernment and then believe that He will give it.” (Stanley)

Just as the Hebrews nation had God as a pillar of fire at night to guide them through the wilderness, we have the Holy Spirit to guide us throughout our lives.  We must ask God to shine His truth on any situation that seems questionable to you.

Chapter 6 – Extinguishing Those Fiery Darts


Read John 8:44.  “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.

We have read this verse before but I want you to remember that Satan is a liar or even the father of lies.  It may appear that he is attacking the body but his real target is the mind.


Ephesians 6:16 tells us that we who are in Christ are going to face “all the fiery darts (or arrows) of the wicked one.”  God’s desire is that we are able to fend off all the flaming arrows that the devil sends our way.  The Romans used fiery arrows in battle, they were a double threat.  The arrow could kill you but so could the fire.

In the spiritual, flaming arrows refer to the bombardment of the mind with thoughts, impressions, and impulses that are contrary to God’s purposes. These thoughts might be thoughts to do evil. They might be angry thoughts, sinful thoughts, or temptations to sin.

These verses tell of some of the sins of King David.  Read the verse and match the verse to the sin.  Some of the verses have more than one sin.


1 Samuel 21:1 and 10


Psalm 13


2 Samuel 11:2-4


2 Samuel 11:2-4

Greed or covetousness

2 Samuel 11:2-4


Psalm 13


Psalm 13


Psalm 51:1-4


1 Samuel 25:10-13


1 Samuel 25:10-13


1 Samuel 30:3-6


1 Chronicles 21:1-3


The battleground with Satan is in our minds.  A thought starts in our minds.  A thought itself is not sin. David saw Bathsheba bathing.  He could have gone back inside but he didn’t.  He pursued her.

The devil does not send the same thoughts to every person.  Each sin is tailor-made to our specific weakness.

The devil often aims thoughts at things we value as being good or right.  For example, King David could have stopped with appreciating Bathsheba’s beauty but he turned it to lust.  He aims his darts at your appreciation for beauty, the value you place on knowledge and competency, or the longing you have for approval, value, and love.

But here’s how the devil twists these good things for his evil purposes.  He points out everything that seems ugly or lacking in appeal and plays on the person’s desire for beauty.  The devil focuses on the ways in which the person isn’t as knowledgeable or competent as he or she desires to be. The devil points out all the ways in which people are treating him or her in unloving, disapproving, devaluating, and degrading ways.

The devil points out the lack of love in the person’s life because the person places very high value on love and approval. The devil never points out the abundant blessings of God in your life. The devil always points out what is missing, lacking, or negative.


How do the fiery darts of the devil operate in our minds?

First, the devil sends a single thought. The more you entertain a thought aimed at a need you feel, the more that thought looms in your mind until it crowds out all other thoughts.  This thought can become a “toehold”.

Second, if you entertain thoughts repeatedly—over days, weeks, or months—the thoughts take root in you and become normal to you. The longer we keep the thoughts in our mind, we start making mental plans to act on them.  We allow the sin to become a “foothold.”

The more we develop plans for acting on a sinful idea or temptation, the more we find that the foothold has become a “stronghold.” We come to the place where we feel compelled to try out the idea in our behavior.  Just as it says in 1 Corinthians 10:13, it is not a new temptation in the world and all through this process God has given us a way out.  If we don’t take it, the sin will get a “stronghold”.


Read 2 Corinthians 10:3–6.  “3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not wage battle according to the flesh, 4 for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. 5 We are destroying arguments and all arrogance raised against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, 6 and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete.”

In order to turn Satan away, we cannot use the weapons of man.  It is a spiritual battle.  We must use the full armor of God.  Satan battles with manipulation, deceit and numerous other weapons.

He attacks our weaknesses to get in.  Then he’s going to come back again and again to that weakness.

Most people who are willing to admit that they have yielded to temptation can identify one or two areas in which they are weak.

A stronghold involves a recurring, compulsive thought pattern. The devil often follows this pattern:

You can have this.

You should have this.

You must have this.

There’s something wrong with you if you don’t do everything you can to get this.

Here’s how you can have this.

Now, go get this.


Reread 2 Cor. 10:4–5.  “Arguments” refer to speculations (NASB) false doctrines and false beliefs that sound like truth, but are not.

“Every high thing” refers to lofty philosophies that sound wonderful, but are not productive or effective in building a person’s relationship with God.  We have “every high thing” or “every lofty thing” at work in us if we believe our ideas and beliefs replace the commands of God.”  (Stanley)

Paul says in verse 5 that we are to bring every thought “into captivity to the obedience of Christ.” We are to control our thoughts rather than have our thoughts control us.  The devil knows exactly how to get you to think the wrong things so that you will do the wrong things. The devil also knows what Christ thought, felt, and did. His goal, therefore, is to get you to think and feel in a way that is different from what Christ thought and felt.

We can become “obsessed” with the thoughts and we are no longer free to think the thoughts of God.  These thoughts are dangerous to a person’s spiritual health.  Most of these obsessions are not godly.


Do you have to entertain the devil’s ideas? No.

Do you have to allow his ideas to lodge in your mind and dwell on them? No!

“The challenge of God’s Word is that you are to take control of your thoughts and bring them into captivity—to subject them to obedience, to bring them in line with what God’s Word teaches you and Christ Jesus exemplifies for you.“ (Stanley)

Person who have a stronghold in their life will have to make a concerted, intentional, difficult, and sometimes prolonged attempt to change the way they think or respond to life.

“If you recognize that you have a stronghold in your life, cry out to God to deliver you and release you from it. Ask the Lord to forgive you for the hours you’ve wasted in compulsive, obsessive thinking and sinful behavior. Ask Him to free you from discouragement, despair, and depression. Ask Him to set you free from worry and anxiety. If you trust Him to set you free, He’ll do it!”  (Stanley)


CMD – a critical moment of decision.

Read Genesis 3:1 and Genesis 2:16–17.

Genesis 3:1 – “Now the serpent was more cunning than any animal of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God really said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?

Genesis 2:16 The Lord God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may freely eat; 17 but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for on the day that you eat from it you will certainly die.”

Where was God’s focus in Genesis 2?    They could eat freely of every tree but one.  God focused on what Adam and Eve could do.

Where was the devil’s focus?

They could not eat of one particular tree. The devil focused on what they were not to do.

Read Genesis 3:2–3.  2 The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; 3 but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’”


Eve has had her CMD (critical moment of decision).  In these verses Eve is misquoting what God said.  Read Genesis 2:16-17 again.  Did God say that they could not touch it?  No!

Did God say the tree was bad to eat because it was in the middle of the Garden?  No, it was bad to eat from it because it was the tree of knowledge of Good and Evil.

Why did God say that they couldn’t eat from it?  To protect them and not deprive them.  Satan twisted things.

There’s no sin in being naïve, innocent, or gullible.

There’s no place in God’s Word where He tells us that we must do our utmost to be knowledgeable and fit into the greater society and culture. The exact opposite is true.

God calls us to be innocent.  He calls us to live in purity. He calls us to have no association with or knowledge of evil. He calls us to be separate from a sinful society and culture, and to avoid walking on a broad road that leads to destruction.  Matthew 18:3 says, “Truly I say to you, unless you change and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.?  We are to come as a child.

Jesus tells us that we are to enter throught the narrow gate.  Matthew 7:13 says, “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.”

Read Genesis 3:4–5.  “4 The serpent said to the woman, “You certainly will not die! 5 For God knows that on the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will become like God, knowing good and evil.”  Satan is hurling an arrow of doubt at Eve.

Read Genesis 3:6.  When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took some of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband with her, and he ate. “  Satan’s foothold became a stronghold, and the fall of man was quick.

Read 2 Samuel 11:1–4. “ Then it happened in the spring, at the time when kings go out to battle, that David sent Joab and his servants with him and all Israel, and they brought destruction on the sons of Ammon and besieged Rabbah. But David stayed in Jerusalem.

2 Now at evening time David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the king’s house, and from the roof he saw a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful in appearance. 3 So David sent servants and inquired about the woman. And someone said, “Is this not Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” 4 Then David sent messengers and had her brought, and when she came to him, he slept with her; and when she had purified herself from her uncleanness, she returned to her house.


As soon as David saw the woman, he had a CMD—a critical moment of decision. He should have turned his eyes and kept walking. David knew the law of God. Which one?  Thou shalt not covet.

Satan could not force David and he can’t force you as a believer to think about something at length or to act on a fantasy or a wrong thought. He can only tempt us.  You have the power to turn your eyes away, to walk away, to refuse to listen, to turn your attention to something else. You have the power to say no to a thought from the devil. You have the power to say no to sin.

Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 10:13c (NLT) that “When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”   God will give us a way out or escape the temptation.

Imagine what David was thinking in regards to why or why not.  For each question, there was a godly answer or response, one that David knew in his mind and heart, but he refused to act upon.  Don’t miss the CMD when the devil launches his fiery missiles into your heart and mind. Immediately act on God’s truth and declare, “I will not entertain this idea.”

Read Philippians 4:8 (NLT).  “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”  We are suppose to dwell on whatever is true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report, or praiseworthy.

“To take captive every thought to Christ Jesus is to quench the fiery darts that the enemy launches into your mind.”  (Stanley)


A lot of people seem to adopt “the devil made me do it” attitude when it comes to facing temptation. They might say “I’m too weak,” “I’m not able to resist.” Then they use that attitude to justify their yielding to temptation and committing a sin.  Accepting that you are weak can be good or bad. If you move closer to relying on God, the outcome is good! But if it allows us to sin or have feelings of self-pity, discouragement, or despair, the results are obviously bad.

In His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus refers to the poor in spirit (Matthew 5:3).  Jesus isn’t saying we should become entrapped in a cycle of defeat, which includes a loss of self-worth and the development of a victim mind-set.  “Woe is me, I am weak and worthless.”  He wants us to become humbled and reliant on the Holy Spirit.  When you have the defeatist attitude, you will find yourself doing again and again the very things that you don’t want to do but can’t seem to keep from doing.  Philippians 4:13 tells us that we can do all things through Christ.  Even Paul struggled with this problem.  Romans 7:15-20 tells us about them.

Romans 7:15-20 15 “For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. 16 But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. 17 So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. 19 For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. 20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.”

People sometimes confuse the terms trial and temptation.

“A trial is a time of testing with a goal of strengthening the person who is going through the trial. A trial reveals to a person an area of weakness so he can do something to strengthen himself or trust God in a deeper way to provide what is lacking. The trials God may send or allow in our lives are designed to test us and show us where we are weak and need to become stronger. “ (Stanley)

A temptation of the devil is intended to entice us to do evil. It is aimed at our eventual destruction.  It is an enticement by the devil that always includes sin and is always aimed at destroying us in some way.

A temptation can occur through the devil speaking directly to our minds and hearts, or by the devil speaking through another person who is working under the influence of the devil. The temptation is aimed at getting us to use our God-given gifts to gratify our desires and drives in an ungodly, wrong way at the wrong time.


James 1:13 says “ Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone.” So does God tempt us?  No, God will never tempts us. Satan does the tempting.  God has given him access to our hearts and minds to plant temptations and ideas.  Sometimes he speaks directly but sometimes he speaks through others who are used by the devil to deliver his message to us.  The devil may plant an ungodly idea in a person’s mind, not to entice him to commit sin, but to get them to suggest the idea to someone else.

Jesus warned us against this very practice.  Read Matthew 18:1–7. Verse 6 says, “but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.” This verse 6 tells us that we are not to cause someone else to stumble.  He is not just talking about children in the physical realm, but also to those who are young in their faith.  In other words, don’t cause a weaker person to stumble and sin.


The devil will attack you in your time of need.  The need may be emotional, physical or spiritual.  The attack or temptation may be aimed at one of your strengths.  For example, the devil might come to a believer at their job at a time when that person is feeling a need to receive greater recognition and appreciation. The devil does not come with the lie, “You really aren’t good worker.” No! He usually comes with the lie, “You should get a promotion.”

As another example, the devil might come to a woman who is seeking to do everything in her power to be the best wife, mother, and homemaker she can be.  His attack may come in the form of a lie.  Such as, “Your husband should be complimenting you more and doing nicer things for you. He doesn’t deserve you. You are way too good for him.”


The devil may say to you when you are feeling underappreciated,

“You need to promote yourself more.”

“You need to speak up for yourself.”

He may cause you to compare yourself to someone else and think,

“The boss is playing favorites.”

“I deserved that promotion.”

The devil will say to the undervalued wife, “You know, there are men who would certainly appreciate you more than your husband appreciates you. In fact . . .”

The devil’s lie is always, “You need this. You deserve it. You should take steps to have what you need and deserve.”

Many people think that if they believe that God wants me to have something, then why wait on Him.  They work very quickly to get what they know God has in store for them NOW. They don’t wait for God’s perfect timing.

Consider what Rebekah and her son, Jacob did to get Esau’s birthright.  God’s plan was to give the birthright to Jacob without any scheming or trickery.  But they did not trust God but took it into their own hands.  It would have happened in God’s perfect timing but they made sure it happened.  They gave God a little help.  Have you seen people do this?


Nobody is beyond temptation. Nobody is immune to it or shielded from it. Nobody can live a life without facing temptation.  Jesus was tempted.

Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden at the time the devil tempted them. They were in a perfect environment, and they were absolutely sinless initially.  They were able to speak face to face with God.


The devil has a specific strategy. He doesn’t operate in a haphazard way.  Satan’s foremost strategy is revealed in his temptations of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. He revealed to them just how subtle he can be in his manipulation and temptation, and also how devastating the consequences can be when a human being gives in to his temptations.


Satan directs us to a specific need or desire in our lives. Each of us has a unique set of needs and desires, and some needs and desires are stronger than others. The devil focuses on our strongest need and desire.  Some people question, “Is the devil omniscient—does he know all things about me?” No, his knowledge is limited.  He observes the way you live!

First, the devil tells you that you have a need that God can’t meet.  Eve did not need anything in the Garden of Eden.  God supplied all her needs.  She even got to speak to Him directly.

Second, the devil tells you that he is can meet your need. The devil never claims that he can meet your need fully for the rest of your life without any negative consequences. He doesn’t tell you the full truth about his capability of meeting your need.

The devil told Eve (Genesis 3:4-5):  “You will not certainly die,” “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”  The devil didn’t tell Eve:  Because of Eve fell for Satan’s temptation all mankind will for thousands of years will be affected by your decision to eat of the forbidden fruit.  Your relationship with Adam will be changed.  Your relationship with God will be destroyed.  The devil won’t tell you the full consequences of the sin he entices you to commit.


Every person has four basic physical needs:  food, water, air, and physical security.

Every person has four basic emotional needs:  human love and acceptance, feelings of competency, praise or recognition that lead to feelings of worthiness, and purpose or usefulness.

Every person has four basic spiritual needs:

God’s unconditional love, God’s forgiveness of sins, the assurance of everlasting life, and an awareness of God’s abiding presence that gives hope for the future and confidence that God is always in control.

John 3:16-17 tell us that God can meet all our spiritual needs.  Jesus says, “16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.”  Through Jesus’ work on the cross we have eternal life and salvation.

Jeremiah 29:11 tell us about God’s assurance.  God’s plans are to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Jeremiah 29:11 says, “ For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.”


God can meet your emotional needs.  This is one of the jobs of the Holy Spirit in your life. He also does this by sending people into your life who can wrap their arms around you and love you, encourage you, build you up, applaud you, and help you discover your unique gifts and ways in which to use them for the greatest good—now and in eternity. In John’s Gospel, chapters 14 through 17, Jesus repeatedly told His disciples that He would be with them and abide with them, and that they would be in Him and be comforted by the Holy Spirit in their lives. KJV calls Him the Comforter.

God gives us encouragement in Deuteronomy 31:6.  It says, “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”


Satan comes to you at your moment of greatest need with an urgent message that you can and should use an ungodly method or means to achieve a godly result. Satan’s temptations always have a sense of urgency about them.

Read Matthew 7:7-12.  “7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 9 Or what man is there among you who, when his son asks for a loaf, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, he will not give him a snake, will he? 11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!  12 “In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

 Satan gets us to question whether God will meet a need. God will meet this need.  He will do it in His way, in His timing, and He will do it in a way that is entirely for our eternal good without any negative consequences!

“Psychologists for years have advocated that people HALT. They know that if a person gets too hungry (H), too angry (A), too lonely (L), or too tired (T), he is in danger of emotional imbalance or continued depression. Before these negative situations can arise, make sure that you meet these physical and emotional needs to the best of your ability.” (Stanley)

Take care of your physical body—eat and drink what is healthful. Get sufficient rest and relaxation. Work and spend your physical resources wisely to provide for yourself the adequate shelter and clothing you need.

Take care of your soul—your mind and emotions. Make friends and sustain those friendships.  What does Philippians 4:8 tell us that we should focus on?  “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.


The devil’s temptation nearly always presents an ungodly method to achieve a godly result. The truth of God is that the means are just as important as the end results and goals.

Luke 4:2-3 says, “for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And He ate nothing during those days, and when they had ended, He became hungry. 3 And the devil said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.”.   Satan attacked Jesus at the end of His fasting with a temptation regarding His immediate need, which was hunger. The devil desires for us to satisfy ourselves and, in so doing, to get off course from God’s plan for our lives.  If he can make it all about us, then he is winning.


Satan often presents an opportunity for us to meet our need, right now.  He wants us to solve the need ourselves without considering God.  It is no coincidence that when you feel the hungriest, he brings across your path a commercial or billboard for the most appealing food items. The devil wants you to act immediately before you have any time to think through your decision.

Take the time to ask yourself some very basic questions. You know the answers!

Is this behavior wrong according to the Bible?

What have been the consequences in other peoples lives?

If I yield, how will this affect me?

Am I willing to pay the consequences of yielding?

Will yielding to this temptation satisfy me or stir up an even stronger desire?

Is yielding to this temptation a wise decision or a foolish one?

How can I do this against the God who loves me so much?

“How then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”

Consider Joseph and Potiphar’s wife.  (Gen. 39:6c-12).  When Potiphar’s wife made advances to Joseph, his response was to consider how good Potiphar had been to him and then he ran.  He considered the consequences.

The devil nearly always couples his temptations in a sense of urgency.  You think I need it right now.  I really, really, really need this.”

“The truth is, we nearly always can wait for minutes, hours, even days before we make a decision related to sin. The devil knows that if we wait until the moment of passion passes, the object is out of sight, and the emotional heat is replaced with a rational cool head, we will not be nearly as prone to give in to his temptation. When you are tempted . . . pause. Wait. Think. Reflect on what you know to do that is right before God.” (Stanley)


Read Genesis 3:1–6. “Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from [a]any tree of the garden’?” 2 The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; 3 but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’” 4 The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! 5 For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.”

What were the three great needs in Eve’s life?

She had a physical desire for what tasted good and satisfied her hunger.

She had a desire for beauty.

She had a desire for knowledge to be more like God.

Earlier today, we talked about our physical, emotional and spiritual needs.  Every person has the following desires:  For pleasure, for things that seem lovely and to learn.  The devil tells us that we deserve to have our needs met.

“Many people ultimately define success as having all of their needs met, surrounding themselves with the most beautiful objects that can be purchased—from lovely homes to fancy cars to beautiful clothes and jewelry—and having the best education and training available.”  (Stanley)


You need to address two main areas of your life.


Consider what is the greatest need in your life right now?  Don’t tell us.  Just think about it.

If a person who believes he is being punished unfairly for something he did not do. The more he dwells on the injustice he is feeling, the more he feels compelled to do something about the injustice. The more he dwells on what he might do, the closer he comes to taking action on the idea—he begins to plot and plan ways in which he might take justice into his own hands.

The person falsely concludes, “God doesn’t love me. God doesn’t care about this pain I’m feeling. God isn’t going to do anything to give me the justice I deserve. I need to take care of this myself.”

This is why people suddenly seem to go berserk and kill innocent people,  They have been dwelling on an unmet need in their lives, and rather than trust God to meet that need, they have been stewing in their pain and brewing up ways in which they might handle the pain of their injustice.

The greater the feelings of need in your life, the more vulnerable you are. People seem to think that if we reach a certain level of spiritual maturity, then we will become immune to temptation. Not so! Never forget that the devil even attacked Jesus, the Son of God, with intense temptation!

What can you do?

Identify the situations and times in which you feel the most vulnerable.

Take action to change those situations and to eliminate those vulnerable times.


Every person seems to have a predisposition toward a particular sin or sins. What are the three big categories of sin are described in 1 John 2:16?   “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.”

the lust of the flesh – To lust is to crave, to have an intense and insatiable desire for

the lust of the eyes – The lust of the eyes refers to things that we see and just have to have.  Covetousness, jealousy, and greed.

the boastful pride of life – The pride of life refers to things that satisfy a person’s inner longing for value or esteem. A person who has the pride of life craves awards, fame, rewards, applause, and outward expressions of appreciation more than anything else, including time with family.

Satan entices us to go beyond the boundaries that God has established.


Never forget the devil’s purposes:

To draw you away from God

To spoil God’s purpose for your life

To deny the glory of God in your life

To destroy you in any way he can, including physical health

The devil does his best to get you to obsess on your need or desire. The devil also does his best to keep you in the now moment of your need. He doesn’t want you thinking about the past and the ways in which God may have met your need in the past.He doesn’t want you thinking about the future and that your need may be met in a legitimate or godly way in the future. He wants you thinking about how to get your need met now, now, now. He tries to keep you in a state of urgency.

The devil’s ultimate goal is to get you to sin. And sin separates you from God as well as from other people. Paul tells us in Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Sin produces death—spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

Chapter 8 – Responding to Temptation


God gave us free will, when we make good decisions, it is a good thing.  But we can also make bad decisions.  When it comes to responding to a temptation, there is a godly way and an ungodly way.

First, you must honestly ask yourself, Do I really want to resist the temptation?  Sometimes people aren’t quite sure they want to resist temptations—at least not all temptations, all the time, and in all circumstances. It is always a choice.  God does not force us to do what is right.

James 4:7 tells us that if we submit (NASB) or humble (NLT) ourselves to God and resist the devil then the devil will flee.  The power to resist temptations comes from our submission to God.  As Christians, we submitted ourselves to God when we made a decision to accept Jesus as Savior and make a firm commitment to follow Jesus as the Lord.  We cannot lose our salvation but our relationship with Christ can waver and we need to make that commitment day by day.

It is a commitment that we are called by God to make with “steadfastness” and “faithfulness.” (see Hebrews 10:23 and James 1:12)  It is a commitment of the total self—spirit, mind, emotions, and body. Part of the route to salvation requires obedience on our part.

“To make a commitment to Christ is to make a decision to do what Jesus commanded us to do and to pursue with the whole heart, mind, and soul, the pure, wholesome, godly, and holy life that He lived. Jesus commanded us to be “perfect”—which means to be whole. He commanded us to love one another. He commanded us to be diligent in keeping His teachings. He commanded us to be His witnesses at all times in all places. He commanded us to walk boldly by faith and to trust God to meet our needs, regardless of what those needs might be. Jesus gave all of Himself to us, and in return, Jesus requires all of us. That’s what it means to take up our cross daily and follow Him.” (Stanley)

Included in our total commitment to Christ are a total desire and a commitment not to sin. Our pursuit is for righteousness.  Things that are righteous are pleasing to God. Does this mean that every Christian lives a sin-free life? No. As long as we continue to live in fleshly bodies, we will continue to sin.

We will sin from time to time in thought, word, and deed, but our desire as genuine Christians must be to follow the Lord closely so that we don’t sin, and if we do sin what do we do? (See 1 John 1:9)  We are to confess our sins to God.

When we confess our sins to God, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  Instead of just accepting that we sin, we need to move forward with an even stronger determination not to sin.


Charles Stanley believes that most people who give in to temptation offer one of five excuses.


Genesis 3:12.  What does Adam say?  “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate”.  To err is human but to find someone to blame it on, is even more human.

Read Proverbs 1:10–16.  10 My son, if sinners entice you, Do not consent.  11 If they say, “Come with us, Let us lie in wait for blood, Let us ambush the innocent without cause;
12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol, Even whole, as those who go down to the pit;
13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth, We will fill our houses with spoil;
14 Throw in your lot with us, We shall all have one purse,” 15 My son, do not walk in the way with them.  Keep your feet from their path, 16 For their feet run to evil And they hasten to shed blood.”

What excuses do you see in these verses?  “Everybody is doing it” and “Nobody will ever know”.

God is omniscient.  He knows when we have sinned.  He is waiting for us to make it right by confessing the sin.  Read Genesis 3:8-11.   8 They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 Then the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?” 10 He said, “I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.” 11 And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?”


Did God know what had happened in the Garden that morning?  Yes and He knows when we sin.


The person who offers this excuse believes, in essence, “God allowed it the temptation to happen, so God sent this temptation.”  James 1:13–18 tells us, “13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. 14 But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. 15 Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. 16 Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. 17 Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. 18 In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures.”


James is telling us that God will never tempt someone to sin.

A temptation is a desire instilled into the heart and mind of a person prompting him to do something that is not good.  God never leads a person to use an ungodly method for a godly goal.


When we use this excuse then we blame God for his inability to say no to it.  Then we are at our weakest, we must become most dependent on God.  1 Corinthians 10:13 says, “13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. “   God will help us resist, or He will make a way out of the temptation for us!

Each of us has the power of choice when it comes to a temptation.  We must turn to the Lord and cry out, “Help me!” and He will supply the power, even true willpower.  Philippians 4:13 tells us that we “can do all things through Him who strengthens me.  and 4:19 says, “my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”   God will give us strength and supply our needs.

Psalm 50:15 tell us that if you “call upon the name of the Lord and He will help you.”


“The person who uses this excuse believes that he is being tempted in some unusual way; therefore, he normal rules and commandments of the Bible don’t apply to him. He believes he is justified because the temptation “came out of the blue” or “was unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before.” (Stanley)

Sometimes people will say, “I don’t know anybody else who has ever faced this.” Or they say, “It didn’t seem like a sin at the time. The person told me that what I was doing was permissible and even desirable in God’s eyes.”

1 Cor. 10:12 (NLT) says “If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall.“  In other words, don’t ever think that you are beyond the rules of the Bible, or that you have the ability in yourself to determine right and wrong apart from God’s Word. Don’t ever think that you are beyond being tempted or tricked into doing what is evil.

We have read 1 Corinthians 10:13 a number of times throughout this study.  There is nothing new regarding temptation today or when Jesus walked this earth.  God will give you a way out when you are tempted. You don’t have to give in.


One of the devil’s lies is that if you think a sinful thought and it is the same as committing a sinful deed, you might as well do it.  Jesus tells us in Matthew 5:21-23 and 27-28 that “21 You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘You shall not commit murder’ and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.’ 22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. 23 Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, . . .  27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery’; 28 but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

The person who lusts is entertaining adultery and hatred can become murder in his heart.  The people to whom Jesus was speaking believed that it didn’t matter what a person thought or felt. It only mattered what a person did.  Remember what we said a few weeks ago, it all starts with a thought.  The thought may lead to worse things.

No person can keep from thinking a negative, wrong, or sinful thought from time to time. Thoughts come. The good thoughts should stick and take root. The negative, wrong, and sinful thoughts need to be released immediately.


Resisting temptation is a learning process.  It is not as easy as we think.

Part of the reason for attending a church is to be with like minded believers but we also attend to be encouraged to stay on the straight and narrow.  One way to help you resist temptation is to go to someone you know who is also tempted in that area and has successfully responded in resisting the temptation and refusing to yield to it.

We also have Jesus as an example.

Read Matthew 4:1–11. Considering that Jesus was fully human.  He fasted for 40 days so he was in a weakened state and hungry.  Also Jesus was perfect in His humanity in ways we aren’t. We are born with a sin nature. Jesus was not.

More was at stake between Jesus and Satan than you and I versus Satan. If Jesus fell for Satan’s tricks and temptations, then the salvation of the world would never have happened.  Jesus HAD to be a perfect sacrifice.

The devil began his temptations with the word ‘if’. He attempted to cast doubt who Jesus was and His relationship with God, the Father.

The devil attempts to call into question our relationship with God and your gifts and who you are in Christ Jesus. He attempts to call into question the presence and work of the Holy Spirit in and through your life.


Satan first attacks Jesus’ physical need. (Matthew 4:3)  He attacks His hunger.  I can barely skip one meal, let alone 120 meals.

So what would have been wrong with Jesus doing what Satan had suggested?

God does not do what the devil entices or tells Him to do!


Read Matthew 4:6.  The devil then appealed to Jesus’ need to have a following.

“This temptation presented a questionable methodology. The devil was appealing to Jesus to accomplish His purpose on the earth through certain means that would be quick, flamboyant, and irrefutable.  It was not God’s way for providing atonement for the sins of the whole world. God’s methodology required the death of Jesus on the cross.” (Stanley)

When the devil issued this temptation to Jesus, he threw in a couple of Bible verses to try to convince Jesus that it really was a good method for Jesus to use. The devil was quoting Psalm 91:11–12 .

In the last chapter, I used the example of Jacob and Rebekah stealing Esau’s birthright.  It was going to happen, they just helped it along.  Today we might say, “They can’t afford the home on just one salary.” The devil says, “Move in together. You’re going to get married anyway.”

The goals are godly. There’s certainly nothing ungodly about marriage. There’s nothing ungodly about owning a home. But the method is all wrong in light of God’s Word!


Matthew 4:8 says, 8 Again, the devil *took Him to a very high mountain and *showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.”  How was Satan wrong?  The devil did not have the authority to give all the kingdoms to Jesus, not eternally.  The devil was attempting to keep Jesus from doing the one thing that would secure the kingdoms of the earth for Jesus—which was the sacrifice of His blood and death on the cross.  He was trying to trip up Jesus on timing. The devil will come to you with temptations that seem reasonable.

“The devil will come to you with temptations that are totally wrong when it comes to timing. He will tell you that he can give you something that he truly cannot give you. The devil’s timing is never the right timing. The devil’s claim to being able to do something eternally good is never a valid claim!” (Stanley)


Jesus is our role model. The way He responded to temptation is the way we are to respond to it.  He quoted the Word of God to the devil. If this method was good enough to be used by Jesus, it’s a method that is good enough for any of us to use.

In verses 3-4 Satan says, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread,” Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy 8:3.

In verses 6-7 Satan says “throw yourself down”, angels will save you and Jesus replied by quoting Deuteronomy 6:16.  The devil’s methods never produce anything that is eternally beneficial.

In verses 8-9 Satan offers Jesus all the kingdoms of the world.  Jesus answers with Deuteronomy 6:13.  He reminds Satan that only God has the authority to give Jesus these things.  The devil should be worshiping Jesus and serving Him.


The temptation of Jesus in the wilderness gives us the pattern of response we are to use when the devil tempts us.  There is no substitute for replying to the devil’s temptations with a verbal spoken-aloud quote of the Word of God.  Eve entered into a conversation with the devil and yielded to temptation. Jesus replied with a command from Scripture and did not yield to temptation.

There is no substitute for knowing the Word of God. The less you know, the more susceptible you are to the devil’s temptations. It is vitally important that you read, study, and memorize the Word of God so you have verses of Scripture already planted in your heart and mind when temptations arise. If you have done this, the Holy Spirit can bring those verses to your memory quickly

Second, Jesus stood on the promises of God that God would meet all of His needs as a human being. You need to know those promises and stand on them as well.

Third, Jesus was 100 percent committed and resolved in His heart and mind that He would choose to do things God’s methods to achieve God’s goals—and to act in God’s timing.


How does Jesus finally get Satan to leave? (Matt. 4:10).  He said “Away with you” and Satan left.  Jesus, in effect, distanced Himself from the tempter.

Consider what happened in the life of Joseph when Potiphar’s wife “cast longing eyes on Joseph” and said to him, “Lie with me.” (See Genesis 39:7.)  What was Joseph’s response to the situation?  (Genesis 39:12)  He “fled and ran outside”

There may be times when a temptation comes to you through another person and there’s no time to quote Scripture to that person. You must respond in that moment by fleeing. Walk away.


The best time to say no to a temptation is immediately.  Don’t ignore God’s warnings!

Samson ignored God’s warnings. Samson had a weakness for Philistine women. (Read Judges 14:1–3)  He chose to ignore warnings from the Word of God or the advice of his parents.

What was the result of this desire of Samson’s in his chosen bride being given to someone else?  It resulted in the death of thirty men of Ashkelon, and ultimately his chosen bride’s death.

Did Samson learn from this experience? No.

Read Judges 16:1-2.  Samson next turned to a harlot in Gaza, also a Philistine area. The Philistines got word that he was with the harlot, and Samson narrowly missed being killed.

Did Samson learn from this experience with the harlot in Gaza? No.

Samson next turned to a Philistine woman named Delilah. She repeatedly tricked Samson.  Samson’s life is a picture of what happens when we willfully choose to ignore God’s warnings.

Proverbs 11:14 says, “Where there is no guidance the people fall but in abundance of counselors there is victory.”


Proverbs 15:22 says, “Where there is no guidance the people fall, but in abundance of counselors there is victory.”

and Proverbs 24:6 says, “For by wise guidance you will wage war, and in abundance of counselors there is victory.”

What do these proverbs say?  It is good to seek the counsel of others.

What are possible sources that can help us do what is right?  The Holy Spirit, Bible, our parents or loved ones, friends, pastor . . .

“Don’t dismiss what God commands in His Word. His commandments are intended to safeguard you from evil. Don’t dismiss what godly parents counsel you to do. Their wise counsel is for your protection. Don’t dismiss or discount the ways in which God has spared you from evil in the past. Recognize His loving hand at work in your life, sparing you from evil and its consequences. Don’t think you are above the attempts of the enemy to trip you up or entice you. Don’t think that you can outmaneuver the devil or outsmart those in whom the devil operates. He is crafty, wily, manipulative, and subtle beyond human measure.”  (Stanley)

If you fail to heed God’s repeated warnings, you are likely to find yourself enslaved by the very forces that you thought you could control or conquer.

God’s warnings are there. He never fails to warn His people about the consequences associated with evil. He always holds out the wonderful promises associated with obedience. Listen to what God speaks to you in the Bible, through godly people, and through your own prior experiences.

Chapter 9 – Staying Dressed for Battle


Ephesians 6:10-18 – “10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.


18 With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,


One of the most important passages in the Bible about overcoming enemy attacks is found in Ephesians 6:10–18.  Our church even did an entire week of VBS about the whole armor of God.  Verse 13 says that we are to take up the whole armor of God so that you can withstand evil day.  The whole armor of God helps us withstand Satan’s attacks everyday but Paul warns us that there will be “evil days”.

“The “evil day” described the most intense moments of Satan’s attacks and temptations. It was a reference not to a particular time on the calendar of history, but to the intensity with which the devil attacks every person from time to time. Don’t be lulled into thinking that because everything is fine today, everything will automatically be fine tomorrow. The devil never gives up trying to defeat you.”  (Stanley)

Sometimes these crises come to us after a slow buildup over time.   There are times when things are fine and then suddenly emergencies hit you out of nowhere. The house catches on fire; the child is abducted; the building is attacked; the person is taken hostage.

We are to put on this armor everyday so that we are ready for the devil’s attacks.  During the occupation of Israel, every Roman soldier wore his armor because any day there could be trouble.  Paul used the example of the Roman soldiers because everyone he shared the Gospel with knew the full armor of a Roman soldier, even in Ephesus.  If we look at this armor in a spiritual light, we quickly recognize that the armor is the nature and likeness of Christ Jesus.

We have the ability to put on these attributes of Christ Jesus because we have put our trust in Him as our Savior and Lord. He dwells in us by the power of His Holy Spirit, and we are given the power to become “more than conquerors.” (See Romans 8:37.)

The first three full are of God are required because Paul used the word, ‘having’.  The last three are to be used as needed because Paul used the words, ‘take’ or ‘take up’.

THE BELT OF TRUTH  (Eph. 6:14).


“Roman soldiers wore a long tunic that was cinched in at the waist by a belt so they could move quickly and decisively without tripping over the garment. The belt was wide; it extended down from the waist to cover the abdomen and, in some designs, the groin area. The belt had a place to attach a sword.” (Stanley)

The abdomen was considered the most vulnerable area in a sword fight because it was soft and fleshy tissue.  There are no bones to protect this area.

What organs of our physical bodies are located in the abdomen? The organs are related to the digestion and elimination of waste and the organs of reproduction are in this area.

Paul was saying to the Ephesians, “You have to know what to take into your life and what to eliminate from your life. Truth must be the filter for all perceptions, ideas, and dreams.”  If you are unsure about what is true and what is a lie, you will be living in a state of confusion, and your decisions and choices will lack clarity, focus, and power.  (Stanley)

Discernment helps us decide whether something lines up with God’s truth or it does not. If something is true, then we can take it into our lives and it will become a part of us.  If it is not true, we are to eliminate quickly. They are a waste of time, energy, and attention.

The organs of reproduction are linked to our relationships. Everything that is birthed on this earth is birthed in relationship with other people.

While on the earth, we give birth to babies, but we also give birth to ideas, ministries, companies, movements, and organizations which impact our relationships with other people.  We need to know which relationships are based on God’s truth and which are rooted in lies. While on the earth, it is important that we form positive or good alliances.  These alliances can include who you date or marry.  These alliances must be based upon truth.

2 Corinthians 6:14-18 says “14 Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? 15 Or what harmony has Christ with Belial (Satan), or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? 16 Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them; And I will be their God, and they shall be My people.  17 “Therefore, come out from their midst and be separate,” says the Lord.  “And do not touch what is unclean; And I will welcome you.
18 “And I will be a father to you, And you shall be sons and daughters to Me,” Says the Lord Almighty.”

This tells us whom we should ate or marry.  We should not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers.  What do these verses say about our bodies?

They are the God’s temples.

What is the significance of Paul quoting Leviticus 26:12; Jerimiah 32:38 and Ezekiel 37:27 in these verses in 1 Corinthians 6?   God promised a personal and close relationship with His people under the new covenant. God cannot be in the presence of sin.

The pursuit of truth requires a real commitment on our part.

“Putting this girdle of truth around you—is your conscious commitment to trust Jesus as your Savior and make a commitment to believe in Him and follow Him with your whole heart. A commitment is a very serious matter. It’s saying, “I will follow Jesus as the Lord of my life no matter what.” You must stand for the truth without compromise.  (Stanley)

A number of people where a WWJD bracelet to remind them of “What Would Jesus Do?”  When we are faced with a decision, an evaluation, a choice, an option, your first thoughts become, WWJD and you should ask yourself, “How does this line up with God’s Word?”

John 14:6 tells us that Jesus is Truth.  “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.”  So if we are putting on the Belt of Truth, we are putting on Christ.

Putting on the Belt of truth is reminding ourselves that we have the truth of God in us.  It is available to us, it is part of us, and it is operating in us at all times.


Romans 5:17 (Amplified) “For if because of one man’s trespass (lapse, offense) death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God’s] overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them into right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).”

2 Corinthians 5:21 (Amplified) “For our sake He made Christ [virtually] to be sin Who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become [endued with, viewed as being in, and examples of] the righteousness of God [what we ought to be, approved and acceptable and in right relationship with Him, by His goodness].”

Paul tells us that when we accept Jesus as our Savior, we receive the “gift” of righteousness. This gift of righteousness is said to be imputed righteousness. The word ‘Imputed” when used biblically means “treated as if it were theirs through faith.”

The righteousness we receive is Christ’s righteousness, not our own righteousness.

“It refers to a lining up of a person’s beliefs, attitudes, thoughts, and behavior with God’s commandments and principles. There simply is no substitute for living obediently before God.” (Stanley)

Before we accepted Christ we were focused on ourselves or the world but after we accepted Christ we should be focused on God.  We should have what King David asked for, “Create in me a clean heart, O God. And renew a steadfast spirit within me” (Ps. 51:10).

The Roman soldier wore a breastplate to protect his lungs and heart. The lungs connect us directly with our environment. The world contributes to us, and we contribute to the world. Our spirits can be polluted by the world.

The following verses tell us about the “breath” of God.  What was created or received when God breathed.

Psalm 33:6 – All creation

Job 33:4 – Life

2 Timothy 3:16-17 – The Word of God (Bible)

John 20:22 – The Holy Spirit was received.

The breast plate of righteousness also protects the heart, another life sustaining organ.  Damaging the heart causes death, spiritual and physical.

Charles Stanley says “The “heart” refers to the seat of a person’s will, and also to the emotions, beliefs, and attitudes that feed into what a person wills or chooses. Righteousness is to cover all of our emotions, beliefs, and attitudes. We are to have the “right” feelings and emotional responses. We are to have the “right” beliefs. We are to have the “right” attitudes.”

Philippians 2:5 says that we are to have the mind NKJV, mindset NIV or attitude NASB of Christ depending on your translation.  That is as right as you can be.  It is easier said than done.

In Proverbs 4:23–25, King Solomon tells us, “Watch over your heart with all diligence, For from it flow the springs of life.  24 Put away from you a deceitful mouth And put devious speech far from you.  25 Let your eyes look directly ahead  And let your gaze be fixed straight in front of you.” 

The wisdom of Solomon says to guard (NLT), watch over (NASB) or keep your heart with all diligence.  You should do this because (NLT) “it determines the course of your life.”


“A person’s reputation—integrity, character appraisal in the eyes of others—is directly related to the atmosphere in which he chooses to live and he helps to create, and to what he believes, thinks, feels, says, and does.” (Stanley)

As humans, we are going to fail or fall.  We will sin or make mistakes.  We can walk in righteousness.  What do these verses tell us.

1 John 2:1–2 – If we sin then we have an Advocate.  Jesus is the propitiation for our sin.

1 John 2:28–29 – If we are followers of Jesus, then we must do our best to do what is right.  We can’t rely solely on Jesus’ imputed righteousness.

1 John 5:18 (NLT easier) – Jesus keeps us from Satan’s harm. (See also John 10:28)


The apostle Paul wrote that you are to stand “having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace” (Eph. 6:15).

The “gospel of peace” refers to the good news of Jesus’ provision for our peace with God.

Peace with God is an objective peace. It doesn’t come from within ourselves. It’s not something we can obtain. It is something we are freely given.  It is a gift from God — a gift given by Jesus when He saves a repentant sinner.

The peace of God is a subjective peace. We have it when we experience the peace that comes through trusting Jesus. This peace is also a gift from God.  It is given to us by God, freely and generously.  It produces in us a feeling of wellness, but it is something that we must actively pursue.

“The message of Paul is this: we are to stand firm, grounded in the fact that we have the peace of God in our hearts. We know who we are in Christ Jesus. We don’t have to prove ourselves to anybody—we know we are assured of Christ’s forgiveness, we know we are loved by God, and we know that we have a secure home in heaven forever.” (Stanley)

One of the worst things we can do is to go into a battle against the devil with fear in our hearts. Fear disables and paralyzes.

Hebrews 10:22 tells us that we are to face the devil with the calm assurance that Jesus knows all about the situation and has already defeated the devil.  Hebrews 10:22 says, “22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.”

Part of the preparation of the gospel of peace is a preparation to face death, Psalm 23:4 tells us that when we face death, we can face it without fear because God is with us and He will protect us, so do not have fear.  In our daily lives, we should be free from fear.

What to these verses tell us to help us be free from fear?

Deuteronomy 31:6 – He will never leave us nor forsake us.

John 3:16 – God loves us, and will give us everlasting life.

John 10:28 – We have eternal life, will never perish and no one can take us from Jesus’ hand.  We cannot lose our salvation.

How do we get the Gospel of Peace that Paul is talking about come? It comes from faith in Jesus.

Peace comes the same way.  In Philippians 4:4-7, Paul says, “4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! 5 Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Proverbs 4:26–27 says “Watch the path of your feet And all your ways will be established.  27 Do not turn to the right nor to the left; Turn your foot from evil.”  You must be prepared and to do so you are the one who must set your mind and heart in before adversity comes so you can respond with peace.

Paul told Timothy in 2 Timothy 4:7 (NIV) that “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith;  Paul referred to the “race” he had been called by God to run, we might call it the “walk” of the believer.  Matthew 7:13-14 says we are to enter through the narrow gate.  We must chose which route we are going to follow in life.  Joshua told the Hebrew nation that “as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15)

“The fact is, if a person doesn’t have peace, he won’t leave the house or set out to run any race! Without peace in his heart, he won’t take the risk of sharing the gospel with someone or speaking up in a group that is ridiculing the things of God. Without peace reigning in his life, he won’t set out for a mission field, give sacrificially, or take an unpopular stand for Christ.” (Stanley)

If we have been shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace then we should want to give it to others so that they too can experience the peace of God in their hearts.

We have learned that Jesus was the only human ever to be truly righteous and that He is truth and now we learn that true peace comes only from Jesus. These are essential tools for us to spiritually battle Satan.


The apostle Paul wrote,

“having girded your waist”

“having put on the breastplate”

“having shod your feet”

Just as a Roman soldier would not go out each day without being prepared, we have to be ready for Satan’s attacks when they come, and they will come.  We must filter everything we say and hear through the truth that is evident in God’s Word. Ask yourself, WWJD or “Is this right in God’s eyes?”

Jesus had a love for the unsaved.  We must have that same love and ask ourselves, “What can I do to help this person experience more of Jesus’ peace in his life?”  Paul started his discussion of the Whole Armor of God with verses with the “WHY” in verses Ephesians 6:10 and 11.  The whole purpose of this study of “Satan” has been to help us “stand firm against all strategies of the devil.”

10 Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. 

Chapter 10 – “TAKING UP” ARMOR


Ephesians 6:16–17 says, “16 In addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

Paul described to the Ephesians: “taking the shield of faith” and taking “the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit”


The Roman soldier used two types of shields. One was small and round and the other was a large door model.  Paul is describing the large door model.

The Roman shields were designed to be soaked with water so we can “extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one” (Ephesians 6:16).  That’s the way our faith should operate. When Satan fires thoughts into our minds, our faith should quench those thoughts.

Your faith is your most powerful weapon against the devil. It is the first line of your defense! The devil sends the thought and your faith will help you to do the right thing.

“Faith puts out the thought with a response, “I will trust God to give me what He desires for me to have, and I will trust Him to help me use what He gives me to bring Him glory.” The stronger your faith, the more you are able to say, “I will trust God “

The Bible refers to three degrees of faith: little, great, and perfect.

Little faith says, “God can do this.”

Great faith says, “God will do this.”

Perfect faith says, “It’s as good as done.”

The stronger your faith, the more you are able to say, “I will trust God to deal with this in His way and in His timing. I will trust God to deliver me, defend me, vindicate me, provide for me, and in the end, reward me for my faithfulness.”

Another theologian described the three degrees of faith this way.

Romans 10:17 – 1st Degree of Faith comes from hearing the Word of God.

Galatians 5:22 – 2nd Degree of Faith comes when you receive the Holy Spirit.  Fatih is a fruit of the Spirit.

1 Corinthians 12:7-9 – 3rd Degree of Faith comes from the Holy Spirit, it is a spiritual gift.


The Roman soldiers would work together to set up an almost impenetrable wall to keep the enemy out.  As believers we can do the same thing.  During tough time in our church or as a group of believers, we can band together in our faith to keep Satan out.

In the Garden, Jesus prayed, “Not My will but Thine,” is the prayer that establishes us in faith.

Philippians 4:19 tells that “God will supply all your need, according to His riches in glory.”  The Word of God says it and our faith says we believe it.  God will supply our “needs” and not our wants. His riches in glory are limitless.

Matthew 17:20 tells us that if we have as small as a mustard seed then we can move mountains.  We should pray to God for faith in difficult times.

“Faith is not about what we can do for God. Faith is about what God desires to do for us, in us, and around us. Faith is believing God to act out of His infinite power and wisdom on our behalf. (Stanley)


The purpose of the helmet was to protect the head.  The head or mind is the control center for a person.  Satan may try to get into your mind but the helmet of salvation will protect us.  The helmet of salvation is there to remind us that Jesus is our Savior, and that what He has done for us.  We should memorize Romans 5:8 because it reminds us of what He has done for us and it should remind us of how much God loves everyone. It is to remind us that the Holy Spirit is always with us to save us from the enemy.

Romans 5:8 – “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

If there is one thing that the last couple of years has shown Americans, it is that nobody can monitor or control your thinking but you. You control what you will dwell on in your mind. You have the power to dismiss thoughts or to entertain thoughts.  And what is the most important thought to keep at the forefront of your thinking? It is the truth that regardless of what happens while we are on earth, Jesus is our Savior and God is still in control.

“When you recall your salvation with thanksgiving for what God has done on your behalf, you find that you have a growing desire to see other people experience what you have experienced. You are quicker to witness to the truth of Jesus as Savior. You are quicker to give thanks and offer praise for your salvation. You are more eager to pray and intercede that others might come to know Him.” (Stanley)


Salvation, in this passage in Ephesians, isn’t just the intial claiming Jesus as your Savior. This word for salvation refers also to God’s ongoing rescuing and delivering power.

The world says that you have to take care of yourself.  What do the following verses say about salvation?

1 Timothy 4:10 – Our hope is in the living God, our savior.

Psalm 7:10 – My shield is with God, who saves the upright heart.

Psalm 68:19–20 –  God is my salvation and my deliverer.

Ephesians 5:23 – Christ is the head of the church and our savior.

Regardless of what Satan or the world says, the truth is, we cannot save ourselves



The sword was not only a defensive weapon. It was a weapon of offense. In this verse (17b), Paul clearly stated that it was the “sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.“ When Jesus was tempted by Satan, in every temptation Jesus replied by quoting the Word of God.  It is the weapon that puts the devil on the run.

The Bible is your most powerful weapon in defeating the devil.

The following verses tell us about the Word of God?

Hebrews 4:12 – It is alive, active and sharper than a two edge sword.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 – It is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,  (NIV)

Matthew 24:35 – Heaven and earth will pass away before God’s words do.

2 Peter 1:20-21 – The prophesies came from God.

“First, use a concordance, and look up every verse that relates to the temptation that seems to come to you most often. Then write out these verses. You may want to keep them handy. Read them often.” (Stanley)

When you quote the Bible in times of temptation, two things happen. First, you feel strength to stand and resist the devil.  James 4:8 says that if we “come near to God and he will come near to” us.  When we are close to God, Satan will not attack.

Philippians 4:8-9 tell us that when you are close to God, we will focus on the things of God.  Philippians 4:8-9 says, “8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is [a]lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, [b]dwell on these things. 9 The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”

Second, when you quote the Bible in times of temptation, the devil has to flee. James 4:7 tells us to “resist the devil and he will flee from you.”



“When you activate your faith to believe that God will defend you and defeat the enemy on your behalf, you experience greater courage and confidence. When you set your mind to look for, anticipate, eagerly expect, and openly receive God’s saving power, you experience a heightened sense of hope. You live with renewed enthusiasm for the future—on this earth and in heaven. When you pick up the Word of God and actively speak it to yourself and to the enemy, you experience a renewed awareness of the Holy Spirit alive and working in you and on your behalf. When you are strong in faith, filled with hope, and keenly aware of the Holy Spirit’s presence and power, you are not going to fall victim to the devil’s fiery darts of temptation or crumble and wither under the devil’s attacks! You are going to win the battle every time.” (Stanley)

Ephesians 6:10 tells us to “be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.”  You have heard me say that you cannot defeat Satan on your own.  You must have faith that Jesus will help you and that His power is greater than Satan’s.

We forget what Paul tells us in Ephesians 3:20, Jesus “is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly more than all that we dare ask or think [infinitely beyond our greatest prayers, hopes, or dreams], according to His power that is at work within us.”

“God is my Savior in this situation; He is my hope, He is my Defender, He is my Victor; God is my ever-present Ally,” (Stanley)


The Whole Armor of God must be put on every day.  We should never start our day without putting it on first.  Charles Stanley says that we should mentally and verbally put on these pieces of armor.

Charles Stanley gives us a prayer to help us.

“I am putting on the breastplate of righteousness. Guard my emotions today. Protect my heart. Help me to take into my life only the things that are pure, and nothing that is poison or polluting. Help me to live in integrity and to have a reputation based upon doing, saying, believing, thinking, and feeling the right things. Help me to live in right relationship with You every moment of this coming day.”

“I am putting on my spiritual boots. Help me to stand and walk in Your peace and to move forward in ways that bring Your peace and love to others. Help me to have the full confidence and assurance that come from knowing that I am filled with the peace that only You can give to those who are Your children. Help me to be a peacemaker. Show me where to walk and how to walk as You would walk.”

“I am picking up the shield of faith. Help me to trust You to be my Victor in every area of life today. Help me to trust You to defend me, provide for me, and keep me in safety every hour of this day.”

“I am putting on my helmet of salvation. Guard my mind today. Bring to my remembrance all that You have done for me as my Savior. Let me live in the hope and confidence that You are saving me—rescuing me and delivering me—from evil.”

“I am picking up my sword of the Spirit, the Word of God. Bring to my remembrance today the verses of the Bible that I have read and memorized, and help me to apply them to the situations and circumstances I will face. Let me use Your Word to bring Your light into the darkness of this world and to defeat the devil when he comes to tempt me.”

“Father, I want to be fully clothed with the identity of Jesus Christ today. I am in Christ. He is in me. Help me to fully realize and accept that He is my Truth, my Righteousness, my Peace, my Savior, the source of my faith, and the ever-present Lord of my life. I want to bring glory to Your name today. I ask all of this in the name of Jesus.



As I said earlier, when we put on the whole armor of God, we are taking on the attributes of Jesus Christ which are truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation and the Spirit.

Galatians 2:20 says that when we accept Christ, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.

This means that through the Holy Spirit, Christ is in me and I am in Christ.  This is at the heart of the Christian’s life. When we put on the whole armor of God, we put on the fullness of Christ’s identity.

When we put on the whole armor of God, we put on the nature of Christ Jesus. The Gospel message does not stop with accept and believe but it requires our obedience.

“We put on His identity, embrace fully His lordship of us, and spiritually clothe ourselves from head to toe, inside and out, with His presence and power. These pieces of armor are not signs of our spiritual power or authority. Rather, they are an acknowledgment of His power and authority.

These pieces of armor are not about us or about what we can do to protect ourselves. No! They are about Christ Jesus and His power to protect us and do what He has promised to do on our behalf against all the forces of hell! Putting on the whole armor of God is all about being “in Christ.” It is a graphic way of reminding us who we are in Him.

                                   Satan                                          Jesus

                                    Lies                                Truth (Belt)

                                 Turmoil                          Peace (Shoes)

                              Wickedness Righteousness (Breastplate)

                            Fiery Furnace             Salvation (Helmet)

                      Death and destruction       Source of our Faith (Shield)

                      World’s philosophies  Word of God (Sword)

                                and ideas

“When you put on the full armor of God, you say to the devil, “You have to go through Jesus to get to me! You may launch fiery darts against me. You may assault my mind with your temptations, doubts, fears, and lies. But you cannot defeat me. I am in Christ and He is in me, and there is nothing you can do to touch or destroy my security in Him. Christ Jesus is my all in all.”

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