While reading in Matthew 4 about the temptation of Jesus, a word jumped out at me that, in the past, I had given very little attention to... It was the word 'if.'
In Matthew 4:3 & 6, Satan says to Jesus, "IF you are the Son of God..." If? What does he mean 'if'? Of course Satan knew that Jesus was the Son of God... But Jesus had been fasting alone in the desert for 40 days and night, He was hungry and since Jesus was fully human, I think it's safe to assume He was physically weak and tired. Was the enemy hoping that in Jesus' weakness he could cast doubt on His identity as the Son of God and trip Him up?
Thankfully Jesus had no doubts at all about His identity and purpose and the enemy wasn't able to trip Him up and cause Him to sin. But things haven't changed much in over 2000 years and the enemy is still trying to cast doubt on who we are in Christ and either cause us to sin or steal the abundant life from us. And sadly, I don't always stand as firmly as Jesus did. (One clarification... Satan is not omnipresent so I don't think he's personally working on each of us. But Ephesians 6:12 teaches us that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, authorities, cosmic powers and the spiritual forces of evil. So clearly he has some help!)
But here's the thing, we don't have to fall prey to his age old, same old tactics... We can spend time in God's word and learn to distinguish the destroying lies of the enemy from the life giving truths of Jesus. Here's just a few...
Is shame and guilt eating at your soul? Romans 8:1... In Christ there is NO condemnation!! It is not Jesus condemning you, you are forgiven!
Do you feel hopelessly enslaved to a certain sin? Romans 8:2... For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. In Christ, you are free! You can know victory!
Do you struggle with feeling inadequate or not enough? Ephesians 2:10... You are God's workmanship... Do you really believe that God's work is inadequate or somehow lacking? Colossians 2:10... In Christ, you are complete!
Scripture is FULL of truths that counteract the lies of the enemy! Stop listening to the life stealing whispers of the enemy and learn the voice of your Abba Father, through His Word!
Do you have a favorite verse that helps you shush the lies of the enemy? If so, I would love for you to share it! You never know, it might just be the word someone else needs to know!