Satan’s Four Favorite Lies

Satan’s Four Favorite Lies

For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing.
–James 3:16

Philosopher James Allen wrote, “Just as a gardener cultivates his plot, keeping it free from weeds, and growing the flowers and fruits which he requires, so may a man tend the garden of his mind, weeding out all the wrong, useless, and impure thoughts, and cultivating toward perfection the flowers and fruits of right, useful, and pure thoughts.” Yes, we are responsible for the thoughts we cultivate in our minds. But there is another force at work in the garden of our minds. Satan, either through other people, through a neutral medium, or even through his own voice, tries to slither into our minds and plant wrong thoughts that lead us away from God.

Every wrong thought that Satan tries to place in your mind is built on a lie. This week we are going to look at four of Satan’s favorite lies, and all four of them are found in Genesis 3. First of all, we see the foundational lie that led to the first sin in the universe and to every other sin since then. It is the lie that says, “You do not have what you need to be happy in life.” In Genesis 3, God had told Adam and Eve that they could eat from all the trees in the Garden of Eden except one. So how did Satan tempt Eve? He said, in essence, “Do you want to be happy in life? All those trees are not enough. What you need is the one thing you do not have–the fruit from the tree in the middle of the garden–and then you will experience happiness.” Satan says the same thing to us. “If only you could live in a larger home, or earn a better income, or marry a certain person, then you could truly be happy. God has not yet given you what you need.”

What happens when our hearts are filled with discontent? James 3:16 says, “For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing.” Then in chapter 4, James continued, “What is the source of quarrels and conflicts among you? Is not the source your pleasures that wage war in your members? You lust and do not have; so you commit murder. You are envious and cannot obtain; so you fight and quarrel. . . . You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. . . . Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (vv. 1-2, 4, 7). James was saying, “Run away from the devil, because he is promoting a false value system that equates money with success, sex with love, and power with purpose. When you fall for that worldly value system, all it does is increase your craving for more. And that craving not only promotes turmoil in your own life, but it sows dissension and chaos in your relationships with other people.” Think about it: What motivates a man to leave his wife and children for another woman? What motivates an employee to inflate his resume? What motivates a businessman to engage in an illegal scheme for money? It is that drive for more and more and more, and it is all built on the lie, “I do not have enough.”

Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Satan’s Four Favorite Lies” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2010.

James Allen, “As A Man Thinketh” (Chicago: Sheldon University Press, 1908), 16.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved.