Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8
The Bible says that we have an enemy that is seeking to destroy us. The battle we fight against the enemy is not physical but spiritual, and much of that battle takes place in our own minds. (Ephesians 6:12)
Our minds are often a spiritual battleground where we are faced with a very real enemy and engaged in a battle that determines eternal consequences. Satan is the father of lies. (John 8:44) He uses deception and accusation to manipulate our minds. When our perspective is skewed by the enemy’s lies, we are out of alignment with the Word of God and the door for us to become prey to the enemy is opened.
Many of God’s people live in defeat because they have been deceived. Instead of walking in the truth of what the Word of God says about their capability and who they are through Christ, they fall victim to lies. Their minds begin processing in incorrect thinking patterns based on falsehood. Satan makes them feel worthless, damaging their perception of both themselves and God.
Satan is quick to point out weaknesses and shortcomings. We all have them. Identifying our weakness does not make us inadequate for the tasks God sets for us! God promises that His grace is sufficient for us and His power is made perfect in weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
Our weakness is supplemented by the strength and ability of God. He promises to override our inadequacy.
Sometimes Satan comes to us armed with a partial truth. He takes our past mistakes and failures and throws them in our face to prove our unworthiness. The Bible calls Satan “the accuser of the brethren.” (Revelation 12:10) He tries to nullify God’s forgiveness and mercy through guilt over past failures and sins. Many of God’s people are unable to accept God’s forgiveness because of their guilt. They feel unworthy, causing them to hold back from God’s presence. They live their lives in bondage to their past instead of the freedom that Christ purchased for them.
When faced with the fact of our own failure, we can become trapped by the lie that we are not good enough. Our worth in the kingdom of God is not purchased by our actions, but by the blood of Jesus. When we repent, God purifies us and makes us worthy in spite of what our past may hold.
Each of these tactics of the enemy serve one purpose: to stop God’s people in their tracks. A believer who is influenced by the lies of the enemy is unable to act in faith. When God tells them to do something it often results in inaction, because their faith has been damaged. Inaction is disobedience! It is the same as deliberately acting against the plan of God.
So how do we overcome the lies and manipulation of Satan? When our mind has been twisted by the father of lies, how do we return to God’s way of thinking? Through the Word of God – The Word as the Bible and the Word as Jesus Christ.
Overcoming the Lie
God has not left us defenseless against the lies of the enemy. (Ephesians 6:13-18) Paul said, “We destroy arguments and lofty opinions against the knowledge of God and take our thoughts captive to obey Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5) Sometimes it is necessary to recapture our thoughts and exert authority over them. We have to cause our minds to come into alignment with Christ. There is a purposeful effort that we must make to be in unity with Christ. Our minds are renewed by the Word of God. The truth of God’s word cleanses our minds of the lies of the enemy.
When believers hear and meditate on God’s word it takes root in our hearts and causes faith to rise! (Romans 10:17) Our faith in God results in an act of faith – obedience.
1 Corinthians 2:17 says we have the mind of Christ. Jesus’s mind was never victim to Satan. Jesus overcame the lies, temptations and accusations of the enemy. Many times he even quoted scripture in opposition to the attack that Satan was attempting. Jesus was impervious to the attack of the enemy and able to overcome any lie. That is what our minds become when we are under the the lordship of Jesus Christ – perfectly united with the mind and will of Christ, and unable to be defeated because of our faith and the spirit of God within us.
*Come back tomorrow for part 3 of Overcoming An Unqualified Mindset