Many see the Devil as a red, horned man with goat legs, a pitch fork and a long tail. This cartoonish image of Him has been seen on products, in media, such as television, movies, and cartoons, and has been pressed upon us as a sort of “boogie man” who exists to draw us in to some big form of evil. Yet, as I pour through the scriptures and examine my own life, I see that this image of Satan has really done us a great disservice. Consider Adam and Eve’s fall: they were the king and queen of this world, whom God had ordained to rule over it, given the task of tending the Garden and caring for the animals. Satan approached them as one of their subjects; and it wasn’t by making them do anything overtly that he deceived them, he merely got them to question God’s command, and even told them how noble it would be for them to be like God…all they had to do was take a bite.
In the same way, He has been doing this same trick for millennia: “I’m on your side here, God doesn’t really want you to do that, He knows that if you but do it, you’ll understand where He’s coming from.” He makes sin seem a noble, tragic and selfless act in which we would benefit ourselves and those who come after us. He gets us in to a subtle trajectory away from God, but heightens it to the degree whereby we try and place ourselves upon His throne. He disguises himself as an angel of Light (2 Corinthians 11:14), making what is evil (rebellion against or the absence of God), seem good in our eyes, all for progress’ sake. This, friends, is why we need to be grounded in God’s word. He sends people, time and again, who come claiming to be from God but who have, instead, led many astray because the lack of knowing and following God’s Word, has been fatal to man’s walk with God since the beginning. The devil is in the details, they say, which is why we need to submit every little part of our lives to the will of God by His word.
2 Corinthians 11:1-15
I wish you would bear with me in a little foolishness. Do bear with me! For I feel a divine jealousy for you, since I betrothed you to one husband, to present you as a pure virgin to Christ. But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough. Indeed, I consider that I am not in the least inferior to these super-apostles. Even if I am unskilled in speaking, I am not so in knowledge; indeed, in every way we have made this plain to you in all things.
Or did I commit a sin in humbling myself so that you might be exalted, because I preached God’s gospel to you free of charge? I robbed other churches by accepting support from them in order to serve you. And when I was with you and was in need, I did not burden anyone, for the brothers who came from Macedonia supplied my need. So I refrained and will refrain from burdening you in any way. As the truth of Christ is in me, this boasting of mine will not be silenced in the regions of Achaia. And why? Because I do not love you? God knows I do!
And what I am doing I will continue to do, in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission they work on the same terms as we do. For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.