By Johnie Edwards
“Now there was a God came to present day when the sons of themselves before the Lord, and Satan also a m o n g them.” (Job 1:6) Satan never passes up an opportunity to do his work. He came among the twelve apostles. “T h e n entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve.” (Luke 22: 3.) Satan can do his work more effectively when he comes among people.
I would like for us to notice some instances when Satan came among people and to notice some applications.
(1) He Came Among Adam and Eve in the Garden:
After God had placed man in the Garden of Eden with the responsibility of dressing and keeping the garden and with the restriction of not eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil lest death come, Satan came among them and said, “Ye shall not surely die.” (Gen. 3:4.) Anytime God makes His will known to man, Satan is there to tell man the very opposite.
(2) Satan Came When Christ Was Baptized:
The baptism of Jesus is recorded in Matthew 3:13-16. “Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.” (Matt. 4:1.) Surely the devil does not pass up the opportunity of coming among those who have just been baptized. He tries to make them concerned with the cares of this life. He sets them to criticizing instead of hearing to profit. He tries to cool down their ardor, abate their love, chill their praise, freeze their prayers and kill their zeal. Satan likes a “sleeping church.” It’s his business to rock the cradle, hush all noise and drive away even a fly which might light upon the sleeper’s face.
(3) When the Gospel of Christ Is Preached:
In the parable of the sower, Satan is pictured as coming among the wayside hearers. “Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.” (Luke 8:12.) Satan comes among people whenever the gospel is being preached and tries to steal the word away. He tries to get folks to question the word of God. For he knows that, “They that gladly received his word were baptized…” (Acts 2:41.)
(4) Satan Came Among Ananias and Sapphira:
Ananias with Sapphira sold a possession. Then Satan came among them. “But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled shine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?” (Acts 5:3.) When Christians get ready to give to the Lord’s work, what better time for Satan to come among them? If he can get us to think the Lord’s work is not very important and that we can get by without giving very much, then Satan has us going his way.
(5) When the Truth Is Preached About:
(a) The name we must wear. When it is pointed out that we must wear the name Christian, (Acts 11:26, 26:28; I Pet. 4:16), Satan comes among people and tells them, “There is nothing in a name.” Many believe him.(b) The church. When people are taught that they must be a member of the Lord’s church to be saved, (Acts 2:47; Eph. 5:23), Satan comes among them and says, “One church is just as good as another.” And many are deceived.(c) The Plan of Salvation. When men are taught to hear the word, have faith, repent of their sins, confess their faith, be baptized and live a faithful life, (Mark 16: 16, Acts 2:38), Satan comes among them and says, “You don’t have to be baptized to be saved.” Many take his advice.We need constantly be on guard against Satan. ” …for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. There it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as ministers of righteousness….” (2 Cor. 11:14-15)
Lest Satan come among us and deceive us, let’s remember the advice given by Peter, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” (I Pet. 5:8.)
Truth Magazine VI: 11, pp. 8-9