It seems like everytime something bad happens to us, most people say that they are being attacked by Satan. Now, I’m not saying that he isn’t the cause of most of our misery, but don’t you think that God has a say in all of it? I mean, if God is in control, than what ever happens to us, is by His permission.
I say this because of what I see in Job. You all know the story, but Satan had to get permission from God to do what he did. The bible talks about hedges of protection around us, our family and our homes. So if Satan had to get permission to attack Job, wouldn’t that be true for us today? What about 1 Cor. 10:13 in that God will not let us be tempted beyond our ability. Sounds like he’s in control of the temptations Satan throws at us.
So if someone cuts me off in traffic and I get angry because of it…would I say Satan caused it? Maybe God allowed it, in order to show me the bitterness I have in my heart. What if I get diagnosed with a serious illness? Did Satan cause it, or is God trying to teach me something or someone else through that illness? If our Heavenly Father is the loving Father the Bible says…wouldn’t it go to say that He will discipline us when we are not doing what we should do? So maybe the trials we face are God’s way of teaching us how to be more like Christ. What about Apostle Paul and the thorn in his side? God would not heal him from it…and because why? The Lord wanted him to stay humble and dependant upon Him. So why wouldn’t God do that to some of us?
I just believe that when something bad happens to me, that instead of jumping on the “Satan is attacking me” wagon, I want to ask the question, “Lord, what is it that your are trying to teach me?” Am I still proud in a certain area? Am I coveting possesions? Is there hidden bitterness to my family and friends? In what areas am I still selfish? Am I seeking the praise of men?
2 Cor. 10:3-6:
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds)
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.”
To me those weapons all look like combatting your mind, your thoughts, and your reactions. No mention of Satan.
John Piper reflects on the ‘warfare’ of Romans: “…Satan doesn’t show up til chapter 16.” That’s 15 chapters of spiritual warfare all about fighting the flesh and getting yourself into submission with God.
Also, we do know that Satan is not omnipresent; that is a divine attribute. So by simple logic, Satan can’t be both the cause of my problem and the problem of someone else in another part of the world.