Sharing the happiness of God, part 13, the schemes of the devil; John 15:11

Class Outline:

Title: Sharing the happiness of God, part 13, the schemes of the devil; John 15:11.


Satan’s schemes: #1 - Master counterfeiter. The parable of the wheat and the tares reveals that evil infiltrated the church, but it will become evident as believers grow to maturity.


Satan’s schemes: #2 - Open opposition to the work of God in order the thwart its progress.


Satan’s schemes #3: Employing false doctrine that appeals to the intellectual pride of man.


Satan’s schemes #4: Apply pressure on the believer in various ways.


Satan can turn a sin-burdened conscience into an occasion for further sin, 2CO 2:11.


So either you can stop sinning or you can apply grace. Since the former is impossible then grace is your only option if you want victory over a sin-burdened conscience.


2 Cor 2:6 Sufficient for such a one is this punishment which was inflicted by the majority,


2 Cor 2:7 so that on the contrary you should rather forgive and comfort him, lest somehow such a one be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow.


2 Cor 2:8 Wherefore I urge you to reaffirm your love for him.


2 Cor 2:9 For to this end also I wrote that I might put you to the test, whether you are obedient in all things.


2 Cor 2:10 But whom you forgive anything, I forgive also; for indeed what I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, I did it for your sakes in the presence of Christ,


2 Cor 2:11 in order that no advantage be taken of us by Satan; for we are not ignorant of his schemes.


The church must forgive and restore anyone who has sinned against her, as long as the person has changed their evil thinking.


A lack of forgiveness means that satan can put on further pressure. This occurs when you can’t forgive yourself, or another, or when the church gets high and mighty and in the business of excommunication.


Stop the downward spiral of continued introspection, which leads to increased satanic pressure. Yes, you’re a sinner, welcome to the club. Forget what lies behind and reach forward to what lays ahead.


The pressure doesn’t have to come directly from him to be caused by him. He has set up a system and he has set up a false systematic theology, which most if not all of us still believe and adhere to parts of it.


Therefore, we see that these pressures can come from personally stepping out of the will of God (1Ti 5) or from others’ not doing His will (2Co 2).


Satan doesn’t have to initiate either one, but he may wait patiently for pressure to begin and then seek to greatly add to it.


Imagine a situation where pride, covetousness, or strong desire leads you to seek to acquire something that is neither good nor bad. But gaining it may take extra time or work which you do not have. This leads you to neglect your family, your spouse, your local assembly, and in the worst case, your doctrinal intake. This leads to pressures that satan can use to defeat you.


The circumstances of twenty first century life have become quite complex. There more bells and whistles, and more options for acquiring things, and all of this demands more and more guidance from doctrine so that the believer knows when to say yes and when to say no, so that he avoids exposing himself to the pressure which satan might use as leverage against him.


We may be sure of one thing - he will use every advantage we give him.


Satan’s schemes #5: Discouragement. #6: Getting side-tracked. #7: Temptation. #8: Wearing down your energy. #9: Bribery. #10: Fear.


Don’t go to extremes concerning satan. He’s not in everything, but he is very real. Not every problem is a result of his doing. If you think that you are giving him way too much credit. On the other hand, do not ignore his schemes so as to underestimate his activity.


Doctrine, the Spirit, prayer, and the ten PSD’s are your skills that allow you to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.


In his book, The Imitation of Christ, Thomas Kempis writes the following:

“Have a good conscience, and you shall ever have joy. A good conscience is able to bear much, and is very joyful in adversities. An evil conscience is always fearful and restless.


You shall rest sweetly if your heart does not blame you. Never rejoice, except when you have done well. Cosmic believers never have true joy, nor feel inward peace; be­cause “there is no peace, saith the Lord, unto the wicked” (ISA 48:22).


And if they should say, like the man who had so much that he built extra barns to store it in, “we are in peace, no evil shall fall upon us,” all because the judgment of God is patient, wanting all to come to repentance.


To glory in tribulation is no hard thing for him who loves; for to so glory is to glory in the cross of the Lord who knows that the world has been crucified to him and him to the world.


Brief is the glory which is given and received from men (John 5:44).The world’s glory is ever accompanied by sorrow.


The glory of those who walk in the light is in their consciences and not in the tongues of men. The gladness of the just is of Godand in God; and their joy is of the truth. He who desires true and everlasting glory cares not for that which is temporal. And he who seeks temporal glory, or removes it not from his soul, shows that he little loves the glory of Heaven.


He has great tranquility of heart who cares neither for the praises nor the fault-finding of men. He will easily be content and pacified, whose conscience is pure.


You are not holier if you are praised; nor the more worthless if you are found fault with. What you are, that you are; neither by words can you be made greater than what you are in the sight of God.


If you consider what you are within, you will not care what men say of you. Man looks on the counte­nance, but God on the heart. Man con­siders the deeds, but God weighs the intentions.


To be always doing well, and to esteem oneself lightly, is the sign of a humble soul. He who seeks no witness for him­self from without shows that he has wholly com­mitted himself unto God. “For not he that corn­mendeth himself is approved, but whom the Lord commendeth” (II Cor. 10:18). To walk inwardly with God, and not to be kept abroad by any affection, is the state of an inwardly Christian man.


Teleological argument, the system of recognizing the structure of the universe and that behind such a perfect order there must be a designer.


From the Greek word te,loj[telos] = termination, the limit at which a thing ceases to be, the end i.e. the last in any succession or series, that by which a thing is finished, its close, its aim or purpose.


God states this argument:

Ps 94:9 He who planted the ear, does He not hear?

He who formed the eye, does He not see?


Ps 94:10 He who chastens the nations, will He not rebuke,

Even He who teaches man knowledge?


The function of the eye is extremely complex. If there is an eye then something extremely intelligent must have made it. I will show you that it cannot evolve.


The complexity of matter is also a problem for the atheist. Any living thing on this planet is highly complex. The more we come to know from science the more complexity we see.


A one celled animal has more genetic information than in a volume of the Encyclopedia Britannica. The information in the human brain is more than the library of congress.


Only living things have specificity and complexity. A chain has specificity in a repeating pattern.


Repeating pattern can happen randomly, like a crystal growing from a saturated solution. This is called specificity.


A living thing has specificity and complexity in that it is the only thing that has a complex message, demanding an intelligent design.


A cell has specificity and complexity in that it is the only thing that has a complex message, demanding an intelligent design. Every plant and animal cell has DNA which contains a very complex code. Not only is it complex but it has a specified function.


For example: Wind and rain may have blindly shaped the Grand Canyon and Niagara Falls (they have specificity) but in how many tries could wind and rain make Mt. Rushmore, which has specificity and complexity with a message - Great American leaders of freedom? It must be an intelligent design.


“If it could demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.” Charles Darwin, Origin of the Species)


It has been shown that cells cannot gradually come to be. All the working parts must be in place at the same time or else it doesn’t work. No complex biological function can have come to be by numerous, successive, slight modifications. [vision, blood clotting, photosynthesis]


For DNA to occur by chance would be like you taking thousands of scrabble letters and throwing them up in the air and they land on the ground in the form of King Lear.


If man, who is intelligent, can understand a known message from DNA strands then that design must also be intelligent complexity and not random specificity only.


The chances of inert, base matter arranging itself into the complexity that we see, simply by chance is a large enough that any statistician would deem it impossible.


Shortly after 1950 science advanced to the point where it could determine the shapes and properties of a few molecules that make up living organisms. Slowly, painstakingly, the structures of more and more biological molecules were elucidated, and the way they work inferred from countless experiments. The cumulative results show with piercing clarity that life is based on machines - machines made of molecules! Molecular machines haul cargo from one place in the cell to another along “highways” made of other molecules, while others act as cables, ropes, and pulleys to hold the cell in shape. Machines turn cellular switches on and off, sometimes killing  the cell of causing it to grow. Solar-powered machines capture the energy of photons and store it in chemicals. Electrical machines allow current to flow through nerves. Manufacturing machines build other molecular machines, as well as themselves. Cells swim using machines, copy themselves with machinery, ingest food with machinery. In short, highly sophisticated molecular machines control every cellular process. Thus the details of life are finely calibrated, and the machinery of life enormously complex. Michael Behe, Darwin’s Black Box.


Also, the fact that there is a right and a wrong that everyone agrees on (tripping someone on the bus) proves that the moral code cannot have originated by chance. If it is by chance then it could have turned out the opposite way making any true or real good or evil impossible.


Yet there is a right and wrong, therefore there must be a standard that is completely right.


There is negative volition at two points at which you can enter cosmic two. There is negative volition, for example, at God-consciousness.


God-consciousness is the point at which man becomes aware of the existence of God. This is also called the point of accountability. God-consciousness can occur in thinking in several ways.


Ontological thinking: since mankind possesses the idea of a perfect and absolute being, such a being must exist. Beyond the relative is the absolute which gives character or value to the relative.


Anthropological thinking: man’s soul possesses both volition and conscience with an urge to choose right rather than wrong. The structure of society is based on human recognition of virtue and truth. These things did not come into being accidentally.