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Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will tell what he has done for my soul. Psalm 66:16

Satan’s 8 strategies

In the realm of spiritual warfare, believers face a formidable adversary in Satan. As Christians, it is essential to understand and recognize the strategies employed by the enemy to hinder our spiritual growth and thwart our relationship with God.

In the realm of spiritual warfare, believers face a formidable adversary in Satan. As Christians, it is essential to understand and recognize the strategies used by the enemy to hinder our spiritual growth, thwart our relationship with God or worse- hurt us. In this article, we will delve into Satan’s eight most common strategies and equip you with helpful insights to overcome them. By immersing ourselves in God’s Word and arming ourselves with His truth, we can stand firm against the schemes of the Enemy.

Who is Satan?

One of the most important things to know about life is that every person has a spiritual enemy. He is on a mission to make your life miserable, and he is dedicated to his job. In the Bible, this enemy is referred to as “the devil and Satan, the one who deceives the whole world” (Revelation 12:9–10). He is also described as “the ruler of this world” (John 12:31) and “the god of this age” (2 Corinthians 4:4). It’s essential for us to be aware of this truth, but also how to deal with him.

The Enemy is constantly on the lookout for people to harm, he is the insatiable lion and never satisfied (1 Peter 5:8). Shockingly, the world willingly follows him without realising it. He is known as “the prince of the power of the air” and at work in those who disobey and don’t follow God (Ephesians 2:2).

God’s plan

It is clear that God sees the ongoing presence of Satan as necessary for His plans in the world. If God wanted, He could irradicate him immediately instead of waiting until the end of the age, when he will be tormented forever (Revelation 20:10). Satan’s ultimate defeat is certain, but it has not happened yet. For us to take our place in God’s story, every Christian must grow and develop in order to become a person with an understanding of how the current Kingdom actually works, and in the coming Kingdom (Matthew 13:35).

The Enemy is constantly on the lookout for people to harm, he is the insatiable lion who never gets satisfied.

Eight Strategies of Satan
One: He Steals, kills, and destroys

A good time to pay close attention- in any situation- is when Jesus teaches a principle in scripture. In John 10, Jesus is teaching about intimacy with God, and how we can follow Jesus and listen to his voice- it is one of my personal favourites. What is fascinating, is that Jesus throws in the middle of his teaching (John 10:10) a sobering truth about Satan and his mission for humanity. The enemy- our enemy- is not a toothless lion trying to tempt you into eating more chocolate or buying a new purse (although he will use any strategy that hurts you and your relationships with God), he is out to do serious harm to you and anyone and anything you care about.

Two: Satan is a Liar

In the Bible, it is said that when Satan speaks, he lies because lying is his nature. He is described as the father of lies (John 8:44). When we first encounter Satan in Genesis 3, his words raise suspicions about the truth. He questions what God had actually said about eating from the trees in the garden. Then, he goes on to subtly deceive by saying, “You will not die.” According to John, Satan has no association with the truth because there is no truth in him (John 8:44). We are dealing with someone who embodies falsehood and deception at its core.

Three: He Blinds you

According to the Bible, the “god of this age” (referring to Satan) has blinded the minds of those who do not believe, preventing them from recognizing the light of the glorious gospel of Christ (2 Corinthians 4:4). Aside from the lies he spreads, Satan is able to conceal the truth. He is dedicated to blinding you and preventing clarity of the significance of the gospel. This is why Jesus says in Luke 4:18-19 & Isaiah 61:1, that he (Jesus) has come to restore our sight.

Should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free?

Four: He will tempt you

This one is straightforward and probably the most common. Nevertheless, we need to pay close attention. Satan uses a top-down strategy. He attempted to deceive Jesus in the wilderness, tempting Him to veer away from the path of suffering and obedience (Matthew 4:1–11). He also succeeded in deceiving Judas during the final hours of Jesus’s life (Luke 22:3–6). In 2 Corinthians 11:3, the apostle Paul expresses concern for all believers, cautioning them against falling into the same trap: “I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.” Paul warns that Satan, like the serpent who deceived Eve in the Garden of Eden, can lead believers away from a genuine and wholehearted devotion to Christ.

Five: He has infiltrated the Church

In 2 Corinthians 11:13–15, the apostle Paul warns that there are individuals pretending to be apostles, but they are not. He explains that Satan himself can disguise himself as an angel of light. Therefore, it should not surprise us that his followers also pretend to be righteous servants. These deceivers may join the church and even teach doctrines that originate from demonic influences (1 Timothy 4:1). Jesus referred to them as “wolves in sheep’s clothing” (Matthew 7:15), and in Acts 20:30, it is mentioned that they will not spare the flock but will lead people astray towards destruction. Without God’s gift of discernment (Philippians 1:9), we can easily be deceived and led away from God. Staying close to God, and searching for the wisdom to recognise and guard ourselves from such deception is crucial.

Six: He can cause serious harm

In Acts 10:38, Peter describes Jesus as a man on a mission. He is fulfilling his mission- healing and restoring those who are oppressed by the Enemy. In other words, Satan can cause serious harm, including oppression and illnesses. Thinking otherwise is foolish and can cause serious issues for you and your loved ones. Take a look at the story where Jesus healed a woman who had been bent over and unable to straighten herself for eighteen years. The Pharisees criticised Him for healing her on the Sabbath, Jesus responded by saying, “Should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day?” (Luke 13:16). Jesus identified Satan as the one responsible for causing this woman’s illness. To be clear, sickness is not only from the Enemy. Through the sin of one man, Adam (Roman 5:12) and consequently the rest of us, the world has fallen into chaos and the fruit of that one misguided decision, has affected the entire world.

Seven: He is a murderer and accuser

Jesus said to those who were planning to kill him, “You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning and had nothing to do with the truth” (John 8:44). John says, “Do not be like Cain, who was of the evil one and murdered his brother” (1 John 3:12).

Satan is depicted as someone who seeks to spill blood and destroy life. On the other hand, Jesus came into the world to offer abundant life (John 10:10). Satan’s ultimate goal is to bring eternal misery, while Christ offers eternal life- life and abundance.

Eight: He mimics Jesus through signs and wonders

In Matthew 24:24, Jesus describes the last days, warning that false Christ and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders with the intention of leading people astray, even the elect. There is no indication that these signs and wonders will be mere tricks or illusions. This suggests that the deception will be effective and appear real.

In 2 Thessalonians 2:9, the description of the last days mentions the arrival of the lawless one, empowered by Satan, who will display great power and signs and wonders that are associated with falsehood. While different translations may vary, some render it “false signs and wonders.” However, this interpretation does not necessarily imply that the signs and wonders are fake.

He is a chameleon, trying to adapt to every situation and mimic Jesus. I think it is safe to say that if Satan’s miracles are deceptive, they have the potential to do serious harm.

He is a chameleon, trying to adapt to every situation and mimic Jesus

In summary

Denying that we have an Enemy is not only unbiblical but also stupid. Underestimating what the Enemy can do to you and your life is, for a large part ignorance of the Church but in fairness, this is where he, the Enemy, has done his best work.

Should you be afraid? Absolutely not, Jesus has concurred death and sin and this is one of the main reasons Christ came to us, 1 John 3:8. Also, we are not useless nor powerless.  James, Jesus’ brother sheds some light on this most poignant matter, commanding us to resist, firm in the faith and send the Enemy packing (James 4:7). We have received God’s authority and prayer is our weapon. Ephesians 4:27 is clear on this matter, and so is Ephesians 1:19. As part of our mission and calling Jesus says: I am sending you to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me (Acts 26:17–18).

How important is prayer? Well, as you know, prayer is talking to and with God. We have been taught how to pray and Jesus makes it clear not to use fancy words but make it real and mean it Matthew 6: 9-13. I can’t believe that I haven’t paid more attention to the power of this prayer- sooner in my life. My translation is this:

  • Love and Honour God
  • Pray that His will be done in my life
  • Bless me on my journey
  • Forgive me for my wrongdoings
  • Give me the strength and wisdom to forgive others
  • Keep me focussed on you
  • Protect me from the Enemy

Praying something daily like this or perhaps one of ours, can be very helpful in the battle against the evil one. Give it a go but don’t be surprised that your life will change radically.

In Love,

Michael

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