Tag Archives: Satan

The Living Dead

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What does the enemy do with people who aren’t afraid to die?  How do you fight something like that?  If the enemy says, “I’m going to kill you,” and you respond with a shrug, “To live is Christ and to die is gain.”  How does he stop you?  The ultimate threat of Satan is death, but Jesus holds the keys to death.  Death has lost its sting in the Resurrection of the Son of God.

Christians who live like they are going to benefit in death are NOT like the suicide bombers of Radical Islam.  Christians do not actively court death.  We embrace life, but we do not FEAR death.  We don’t seek to destroy others through our deaths.  We don’t die for the sake of hatred.  We seek to SAVE as many as possible.  We die for the sake of LOVE, when we must be killed.  It is completely different when a Christian lives like he’s already dead.  It simply means he’s willing to take risks without fear for the sake of saving as many as possible.

All die, but not all really live.  Jesus Christ told his disciples not to fear the one who can kill the body but can do nothing to the soul, but to fear the one that can both kill the body and then throw the soul into hell to experience eternal death.  So who are you going to fear?  Satan can kill the body, but if you belong to Christ, he can never touch your soul.  What is to fear about that?

How to avoid being robbed- part 1

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“I feel so guilty that I’m here enjoying this beautiful day at the beach and back home, I know my family is going through a hard time.”

The student who said that during our team devotions was affirmed in his guilt by several others who nodded their heads in agreement and murmured parallel emotions.  It kind of made me mad.  Right in front of my eyes I was seeing the subtle theft joy by our Enemy.  These kids had worked for a week here in Costa Rica and there were two more weeks of ministry ahead of us.  Today was our only day at the beach to relax.  They may not have recognized their need for it, but my husband and I have been hosting teams for years and we know that not only did they need a day of rest, but we did too.  We were running on empty.  Our Enemy would like nothing better than to burn us out and to rob us of our joy.

God is the Lover of our Souls.  He fills this world with wonder and beauty for us to enjoy.  It’s a gift.  And rest is a gift too.  He calls us to come away with him to a quiet place where he will give us rest and refresh our weary souls.  Not only that, God uses the beauty of nature to draw us to him and to show us what a wonderful God he is.

We should never, ever feel guilty about enjoying nature or needing rest.

I think about God’s wooing of my soul in this way.  He is like a Lover who brings a special gift to the woman of his desires.  God made her, so he knows what she likes.  He knows what she needs.  He knows exactly what will make her happy.  Imagine that when the Lover brings the Woman the gift, she felt GUILTY about receiving it.  That was not his intention at all!  He wanted her to feel loved and to feel special and to feel cared for! 

But her Great Enemy has whispered in her ear again- just like he did in the Garden of Eden– and he has told her God doesn’t really love you, he wants you to be “suffering for Jesus.”  You have to earn good things like this and you haven’t worked hard enough to deserve this kind of joy.  You can’t fully enjoy this and still be a good Christian.  What will people back home say?

Our Enemy has a mission, he comes to Steal, Kill and Destroy us.  He hates that God loves us.  He hates that God gives us good gifts, and if he can, he’ll steal your gifts right out of your hands.  Don’t listen to his subtle lies.  Don’t let him rob you of your joy.

Tomorrow’s blog talks about how to prevent Satan from robbing you of your joy, part 2.  

Same Old Lies

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We throw a lot of blame on men for sexualizing and objectifying women.  But let’s talk about the women who do this to themselves. And the power that is motivating them.

I watched the Superbowl commercials and half time show this year (hey, that’s more than I usually watch!) and I groaned along with every other woman in the room when certain commercials with bikini clad women selling cars with gyrating sex and slithery fantasy appeared.  Every man in the room was a decent good guy and looked down or turned away when these commercials played.  I blushed.  I was ashamed for those women who no longer felt shame.

No one was holding a gun to their heads and telling them to slither around in strappy lingerie.  But someone behind the scenes was handing them a fat paycheck.  They essentially sold their bodies to the entire world.  I wonder if the paycheck felt like it was enough to replace the respect they lost.  I’m sure they felt proud of themselves for making it into a big-time Superbowl ad.  I’m sure this will give a nice boost to their carriers in the actor-slash-modeling world.  But I am a woman and I did not feel proud of them.  They boosted themselves up at the expense of all of us.  They helped dehumanize all of humankind for their own gain.

The Bible says that the prostitute turns you into a morsel of bread… to her, you are food in her belly.  She’s just earning a living, while devouring your soul.  I’m not talking about the poor women who are forced into sex slavery (I’m saving that for another post).  I’m talking about the women who do this to themselves voluntarily and what that does to us as humans, men and women.

Ever since the Garden of Eden when Eve was tricked by the serpent there has been a Spiritual war being waged against women.  Satan hates women… because only women produce Life.  As far as we know, Satan and his fallen angel minions can not reproduce.  That means there is a set number of them.  So it is a strategy of Satan to keep human population lower so he can keep control of humans.  Satan uses war, disease, famine, abortion, and violence against women to keep humans from getting too numerous to handle.

Satan is ultimately at war with God.  But he doesn’t have the power to hurt God directly.  So he goes after God’s beloved creation.  God has made humans in his own image meaning we bear certain characteristics of God like our capacity for love, goodness, and caring for others just to name a few.  Satan’s favorite tactics are doubly nasty because they attack the character of God reflected in humans.  He aims at God when he delivers the blow against us.  He tries to bring us down to a place of shame and humility because that’s what he wants to do to God.

Remember when Jesus was being tempted by Satan?  The last temptation was Satan telling Jesus, “Just bow down to me and I’ll give you the world.”  Satan wanted to put Jesus under his foot, to humiliate and humble him.  Of course, Jesus didn’t fall for that one… but the Woman did.  And women still fall for that one.  “Just take off your clothes and I’ll give you the world.  Just humble and humiliate yourself and I’ll give you everything.”  We fall for it over and over again.

So it’s easy to say these women wouldn’t do that to themselves if men weren’t buying it.  Yes, there’s enough blame to spread all around to everyone.  But the really wicked thing about Satan is that he gets us to fall for his lies and then he heaps us with guilt on top of it.  We bite the apple then he shames us for doing the very thing he tempted us to do.  We go for the thrill of cheap sex and then feel lousy about ourselves afterwards.  Satan delivers a double punch.  Sin is a win-win for the bad guys.  Only God has the power to lift us out of that sticky, messy mud hole.

When God is lifted up and honored, he lifts up and redeems all that was lost.  When God is glorified, all creation benefits.  Only God has the power to elevate humans to the place of adopted Sons of God the Father.  God is the source of all goodness and the farther away we move from him as a society, the less goodness will touch us.  By rejecting God, the source of goodness, we create a vacuum that must be filled.  And it is filled with counterfeit goodness, a cheaper product.  Those sexy girls on the TV screen look good, but the image is a flimsy fraud- a lesser goodness than what God offers.  The more our society pulls away from God, the more depraved we will become.