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Dan Stillings sang a special song in the Sunday morning service, before Pastor Bob Sorensen brought a message from Genesis 3:1-4, “Influenced by the Devil.”
When Paul wrote to the Ephesians, he told them to put on the whole armor of God so that they could stand against the wiles of the Devil. The Devil uses trickery to influence the thinking of an individual.
One of Satan’s suggestions, that he uses to influence your thinking, is to try to get you to live a relaxed, uninvolved Christian life. Jesus taught that there was an urgent need for people to be out witnessing to the lost. It takes faithfulness in prayer, in Bible reading, and study just to equip yourself for service. How easy it is to be slothful in service. Satan is out there just seeking those whom he may devour but we don’t want to get involved.
Satan will try to get you to live for yourself. Jesus taught that we should deny ourselves, take up our crosses and follow Him. Jesus came to seek and save sinners. We are supposed follow His example of self sacrifice. Satan suggests that we should just be good to ourselves.
Satan will try to get you to lower your standards. Today’s society does not require purity, righteousness, or modesty. Society suggests that it is okay to do all sorts of sin, that the Bible standards no longer apply. The Bible says that God does not change. The Bible still says that we are to forsake sin and conform to the image of God’s Son.
Satan suggests that Jesus Christ is not necessarily the only way of salvation. Jesus said in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” Acts 4:12 declares, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Some of the “other ways” that have been suggested are, “Live a good life,” “Belong to a religious group,” and “Be baptized.” These are all good things, but while these are beneficial to the Christian life, salvation only comes by belief and acceptance of Jesus.
Satan is successful if you will simply put off doing anything about your salvation. He suggests that you wait until tomorrow. If Satan can influence you to put off salvation one more day, you are that much closer to Hell. There is no guarantee of tomorrow.
How can we defeat the Devil? James 4:7 tells us to submit to God and resist the devil. Resisting is not easy, but put God in first place and let him fight that battle for you.
The folks at Bethany Baptist Church enjoyed a Fifth Sunday Fellowship with dinner at 5 P.M. and a service of Special Music and Testimonies at 6. Some very good specials were presented by the Jubilee Singers, the Youth Choir, and ensembles from both groups. Darlene Sorensen read a poem that she had written and illustrated recently.