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presents Explorers Series 2
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Lesson 9: My Enemy, Satan
Christians are called to be "good soldiers" of the Lord Jesus Christ and to "war a good warfare." The reason why the Christian life is a warfare is that we have a terrible enemy who seeks to destroy us. That enemy is Satan.
The Lord Jesus Christ has already defeated Satan. One day Satan and all his followers will be thrown into the lake of fire.
But, for now, Satan is going about the earth like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may destroy. Satan is a terrible enemy and he has great power, but I do not have to be afraid of him. Why? Because Christ lives in me. God's Word says, "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might" (Ephesians 6:10).
Jesus Christ, who lives in me, is God, and He is the Victor over Satan. The Bible says, "…greater is He [Christ] that is in you, than he [Satan] that is in the world" (1 John 4:4).
Satan's object is to destroy people, and the way he does it is by deceiving them. You deceive a person when you cause him to believe a lie. It is the same thing a fisherman does to catch a fish.
There is a nice fishing lake in the country. A big fish lives in it. For years fishermen have tried to catch this big fish, but they have not been able to do it. Why? Because that fish has a place of safety, under a big stump. Nobody can get him there.
How does the fisherman go about trying to catch that big fish? Does he go out there, build a nice fire, put a frying pan on it, dangle a hook in front of that fish and say, "Come on, fish, bite that hook, so I can catch you and eat you"? No, he does not!
What does the fisherman do? He slips up quietly behind that stump, so the fish cannot see him. He puts something on that hook that he knows will appeal to the fish. He puts a nice juicy worm on the hook, and dangles the worm in front of the fish.
The battle is on! The fish is hungry—real hungry! He has not eaten for days, and that worm sure looks good to him.
Finally, his desire gets the best of him. He convinces himself that he can rush out there, grab that worm, and run back under that stump.
He grabs it! He's got the worm! Yes, but he's got something else. He's got the hook. And soon he will be in the frying pan!
Why was the fish caught? He was caught because he was deceived. That worm looked good to him, but he did not know about the hook. That is the way Satan deceives us.
Satan knows us! He has been deceiving people for thousands of years, and he knows exactly what "bait" to use with each of us.
Satan tempts me at my weak point. He tempts you at your weak point. Satan knows exactly what to use to tempt each of us. The Bible says, "Every man is drawn away of his own lust [his weak point], and enticed [tempted]" (James 1:14).
It is not a sin to be tempted. The Lord Jesus was tempted, but He never sinned. We sin when we give in to the temptation and say "yes" to it.
Satan's "Big Lie" is this: Sin will make you happy, and there will be no bad consequences. In movies and television, you can see people doing all kinds of sinful things; yet they all seem to be happy, and no one seems to suffer the consequences of his actions.
This is a lie! There are always consequences for sin. The Bible says, "Do not be deceived; God is not mocked: for whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap" (Galatians 6:7). Every farmer knows the law of sowing and reaping. What you plant is what you reap. The same is true in the spiritual realm. The Bible says, "He that sows to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption [something bad]…" (Galatians 6:8).
A young man was very wicked and immoral in his teen years. In the process he contracted a sexually-transmitted disease (STD).
In time he settled down, became established in business, and married a beautiful woman. This couple had a son born to them—born blind, due to the disease of his father. Not long after this, the beautiful, young wife died of the same disease.
One night, this young father, with his heart filled with grief, took his baby in his arms and drove to the graveyard. There, standing over the grave of his wife, he killed his little blind son and then took his own life.
This is a tragic story. It shows us what terrible consequences can come from believing Satan's lies and disobeying God.
Satan uses many lies to deceive us. He has many types of "bait" to attract us. He tells us that doing these things will make us happy, but that is a lie. There is always a "hook" in the things that come from Satan.
A rebellious attitude. Satan was the first rebel, and a rebellious attitude is the spirit of Satan.
Sex outside of marriage. All forms of sex outside of marriage are sin! Save sex for marriage! You will be glad you did.
Filthy music, movies and TV. These all promote Satan's lies. Christ lives in you. Do not do things that displease Him.
Computer filth. Do not let Satan put filth into your mind. A clean mind is priceless!
Witches, wizards, fortune tellers. These things belong to Satan's kingdom of darkness. Stay away from them!
Drinking, smoking, drugs. God says that your body is "the temple of God." Do not defile it!
How can we know if something is really good for us or if it is Satan's lie to deceive us? Ask yourself, "Is this from God or not?" If it is not from God, it is not good. God's Word says, "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above [from God]…" (James 1:17).
This verse says that EVERY good gift is from God. And it comes in God's time and in God's way. If a "gift" is not from God, then it is from Satan. And it is not good, no matter how good it may look.
Just as that big fish had a place of safety, so do we have a place of safety. Our place of safety is Christ. The Bible says, "Whoever abides [stays] in Him does not sin…" (1 John 3:6).
We abide in Christ by trusting Him and obeying Him. As long as we trust Christ and obey Him, we do not have to fear Satan. Our enemy, Satan, will no doubt continue to try to deceive us and get us to disobey God, but we are in our place of safety, trusting and obeying Christ.
God has great rewards for those who love and obey Him. A young girl named Julijanna chose to remain alone rather than go with some of her friends who were involved in sinful things. To her friends it seemed that she was missing out on so many teenage pleasures. But Julijanna had her reward. Later, a friend wrote about her:
"Look at Julijanna. She has a wonderful life and a beautiful husband who loves her deeply. She is happy down to her soul. Julijanna is eating the fruit of her obedient life."
1. I have a terrible enemy, Satan, who wants to destroy me. Satan destroys people by deceiving them.
2. Satan's "Big Lie" is: Sin will make you happy and there will be no bad consequences. There is always a "hook" in the things that come from Satan.
3. Every good gift is from God, and it comes in God's time and in God's way. God has great rewards for those who love and obey Him.
"Father, I want to please You. I have determined in my heart that I will not defile myself with the things that come from Satan. Keep me by Your power. In Jesus' name I pray."
Sharing the Secret
The story so far…
The ban for the school was lifted when Carlos and those who were with him admitted what they did. Jared did not convince Carlos to choose different friends.
For the next few weeks, things went along smoothly. One Thursday, Dan asked Jared if he could go home with him after school because he wanted to meet Beth. Jared quickly agreed.
As Jared and Dan entered the living room, Beth's face broke into a big smile. "You are Dan Foster, aren't you?" she said. "I am so glad you are feeling better again."
"I wanted to thank you for the picture," Dan said, "but I didn't know how. Then I asked my dad if he would let me make these for you. I hope you like them." He took a box from behind his back and handed it to her awkwardly.
Beth carefully opened the box and gave a cry of delight. "Oh, Mom, come and see," she called. The box contained small carvings of sheep, deer, rabbits, horses, and other animals. Beth began to take them out gently and lay them in her lap.
"How lovely," Beth's mother said as she examined the carvings. "Did you do these yourself, Dan? You could sell these."
Dan looked embarrassed, but his smile soon began to fade as he shook his head sadly. "Thank you, Mrs. Baker. I used to make these for my little sister and she played with them all the time. She died when she was six. My dad told me to never make them again."
Beth's eyes were bright with tears. "Oh, Dan, I am so sorry. Did your father mind your making these for me?"
"No," Dan said. "I showed him the picture of the Good Shepherd you gave me. I asked him if I could make you some sheep and other animals. He said I could. At times I catch him looking at your picture. He has not been so angry lately, and he has not been drinking as much."
"I'm glad," Beth said. "And I am going to use Jared's 'Whatever Verse' and pray for your dad every day."
As the boys walked out of the Baker's yard, Dan turned to Jared with a puzzled expression on his face and asked, "What did Beth mean about your 'Whatever Verse'?"
Jared smiled and began to tell Dan about John 16:23 and how God had answered his prayers about the McDougal property.
"Well, Carlos really needs your prayers now," Dan said. "I heard some guys talking about how Alex is planning to get back at him because he has seen you and Carlos doing things together."
"Can we tell the principal or someone who can stop Alex?" Jared asked with worried concern.
Dan shook his head. "I don't think we have any proof," he said. "You keep an eye on Carlos and I will tell you if I hear anything more."
Jared spent the evening in his room trying to think of what he could do to help Carlos. "Oh," he said at last. "I'm forgetting my Secret Sword." He opened his Bible and began to read about Elijah praying down fire from Heaven.
The story was so interesting that he kept reading. Finally he was too sleepy to read more, so he prayed and went to bed.
It wasn't until they were lining up in the hall the next morning that Jared realized he had forgotten to do his math homework. "Oh, no," he groaned.
"What's the matter?" Carlos asked.
"I forgot to do my math," Jared whispered. "Boy! Am I in for it! You know what Mr. Norman is like."
Carlos shoved his math book into Jared's hand. "Here, copy them fast and give it back," he whispered in response.
Jared looked down at the book in his hand. What should he do? Almost everyone did and it would keep him from getting into trouble. Jared stared at the math book Carlos had given him. He suddenly remembered one of the first verses he had learned from the Bible, Psalm 119:11, "Your Word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against You."
The line of students was beginning to move into the classroom. Jared shoved the book back into Carlos' hands. Carlos looked at Jared in surprise, then with a shrug sat in his seat.
In math class, Mr. Norman began to gather the math assignments. When he asked Jared for his homework. Jared said softly, "I am sorry, Sir, I forgot to do it."
Mr. Norman glared at him, then said, "I don't suppose you could tell me what you were doing that interested you so much that your forgot homework?"
Jared's face turned red, then he looked at his teacher and began to stammer, "I was worried about a friend and kept wondering how I…I…could help him. Then I…I…remembered my Secret Sword and…"
"Your what?" Mr. Norman demanded.
"My Secret Sword. That is another name for my Bible," Jared answered, and then continued with enthusiasm. "I read about Elijah praying down fire from Heaven. And then I thought about my 'Whatever Verse'—the one that says whatever we ask God in Jesus' name He will give it to us. So I prayed and went to bed…and…that's…that's why I forgot my homework, Mr. Norman."
What will Mr. Norman do?
What will happen to Jared?