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Monday, August 24, 2015

Though the Flock is Destroyed


If Your law had not been my delight, then I would have perished in my affliction. (Psalm 119:92)


After John baptized Jesus in the Jordan, God’s voice thundered: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.” But then the Holy Spirit led God’s beloved Son into the wilderness to be tempted – the Greek word also means to be tested – by the devil. And in Jesus’ weakest moment, the Tempter said to Him, “If You are the Son of God . . . .”

Three times in this section of Scripture, Satan tempted the Lord to sin. Please notice how the Lord each time responded to the mockery: “It is written . . . (See Matthew 3:16-4:11).

Part of the devil’s strategy has always been to attack those who follow Christ at their weakest and then mock us, saying something like: If you are God’s beloved, why are you suffering? 

Most often he asks us that question when we’re suffering a family tragedy, or dealing with stark loneliness, or financial upheaval, or serious illness, or any of another dozen desperate circumstances that fall across everyone’s life journey from time to time.

But each time Satan tested Jesus, the Lord responded with Scripture because Jesus knew it to be eternal truth. So then, how should we respond to our enemy’s mockery and lies? As Jesus did, and for the same reason: we also know it to be God’s eternal truth.

Here are some of those truths to throw back into the devil’s face when he lies to us about God, when he implies our heavenly Father does not care about us:

I will “Trust in the Lord my God with all my heart, and not on my own understanding.  In all my ways I will honor Him. He will make my paths straight.” (See Proverbs 3:5-6)

Or – I will “Not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that comes to me for my testing, as though some strange thing were happening to me; but to the degree that I share the sufferings of Christ, I will keep on rejoicing, so that also at the revelation of His glory I may rejoice with exultation.” (See 1 Peter 4:12-13)

Or – Though the fig tree should not blossom, and there be no fruit on the vines, though the yield of the olive should fail, and the fields produce no food, though the flock should be cut off from the fold, and there be no cattle in the stalls, yet I will exult in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.”  (Habakkuk 3:17-18)

There are many other similar answers to the enemy's arrows from God’s word, and as you read Scripture for yourself you will find them. But for now, these are some of the truths from God’s Book that I fling in Satan’s face when he attacks my faith. I hope you will find them helpful to you as well.

2 comments:

Barb Schoeneberger said...

Thanks so much for these quotes, Rich. The Bible is the most comforting book I know of.

Rich Maffeo said...

Yes, it is to me, too. I never fails to give me direction, rebuke, comfort, insight. So much more. I wish all God's children loved His word and ate more often at its table.