When the Devil Speaks…

do we listen? Of course not – or do we?

Believe it or not, I’ve always loved the NYC subway system, grateful to ride on the world’s largest system, traveling great distance for a small fare. However, flagrant lawlessness and random violence compels me now to only ride city buses. Of course, any trip is twice as long but it’s safer, right?

Half way home on a recent bus ride a woman boarded and immediately broke the peace of all therein. Although she was well dressed, there was a rage in her countenance and with it she verbally dominated the bus. An African American, she spewed out racial and personal slurs with bellowing volume, never pausing. She paced through the bus and targeted nearly everyone. I pretended to read as I gauged the scene – everyone was cowering, grown men were gripped to their seats. If this woman physically lashed out to any vulnerable person, would anyone assist? Could I bum rush her?

Her cutting and humiliating taunts were personal as she pointed to total strangers jeering and ridiculing their unseen weakness and vulnerability. When she got to me, she announced, “I SEE YOU!!” and spewed out a very personal thing that would embarrass and humiliate me.

No doubt she was demonic and a bum rush would be utterly futile against such spiritual power! Her devilish assignment completed, she finally exited – the whole bus exhaled in relief.

While I let those biting words deflate my heart, assuredly that is not the devil’s worst maneuver or assault. While the “whole world is a prisoner of sin”, Satan’s sole target are those freed from this prison through the blood of Christ. His powers are deployed personally, secretly and cunningly, fashioned and honed with capacities beyond our human purview.

One appalling evidence of apostasy found in entire churches, pulpits, ministries and thereby hearts of believers themselves is the blindness and disregard of the powers of darkness. Derailed from godly commission, retired from the fight, most churches no longer contend for the honor of God nor for the true salvation of man, they are so entrenched in worldliness, the devil need not attack them at all!

To dismiss and diminish the ‘powers that rule this world’ brings success to the devil’s wiles. They are world powers and they are personal powers. As the people of God, as the Body of Christ, we often fail to acknowledge the kingdom in which we now live. We are the outsiders and, to walk close to our Lord, we must maintain that separation.

To a great extent, most believers are comfortable in this Kingdom and work to maintain that comfort and fit. While they become ‘spiritual’ during crisis or illness, most ‘Christians’ are content with worldly wisdom, motivational sermons, and overused spiritual clichés, powerless mantras. The ‘powers of darkness’ are nearly obsolete to many professed believers.

We can’t expect Satan to announce himself on a bus – if only he would be so obvious and exposed! We must walk in the Spirit to discern the diverse ways he speaks into our lives to bring chaos, discord, discouragement, and depression – to rob us of our peace. If possible, he will frame every circumstance that comes upon us with an understanding that is separate and apart from God and His unchanging word. (I wholeheartedly recommend Martyn Lloyd Jones’, The Christian Warfare where expounds upon these life giving truths of God)

Contending in Satan’s kingdom, to make this world a ‘better place’, is an alluring substitute for God’s unchanging purpose and fight: to deploy us into the spiritual battle to free men from the clutches of this world, reconciling them unto God for His coming Kingdom.

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Patient and stealth, Satan intervenes in a plethora of schemes and allurements to derail us from God’s plan for our lives. Once off track, we are left with artificial fruit. Whatever short time remains for us, I pray to be diligent and discerning. May we recognize the craftiness and deceit of the enemy who speaks through many venues. May we stay in the battle and fulfill every call and purpose of God for His glory!

19 thoughts on “When the Devil Speaks…

  1. Excellent and insightful post, Lisa Beth. One thing you said in particular really strikes a chord in me. That is that most churches don’t warrant being attached by Satan. In my personal life, I’ve always viewed Satan’s attacks as badges of honor. If I’m not being attacked by Satan, I’m not living for God as I should.

    Soldier on, Lisa Beth, the Lord’s return draws ever nearer!

  2. Wow, Lisa, that was quite an encounter. You’re right, the enemy doesn’t announce himself, but to someone with your discernment, he can be detected. I agree, that woman was definitely “under the influence.”
    “To dismiss and diminish the ‘powers that rule this world’ brings success to the devil’s wiles.” True! Or, as the late Keith Green said in the song he sang from the devil’s perspective – “I’m gaining power by the hour. They’re falling by the score! No one’s watching for my tricks, since no one believes in me any more.”
    I think you’ll like my post today, about a demonic strategy more subtle than what you saw.

    • Thank you Ann, I really appreciate your comments here. Keith Green was a wonderful and gifted brother, thank you for sharing that quote, I hadn’t heard it before.
      Yes, I read your post! Its like “behind the scenes” to mine here!
      Well written and engaging, your excerpt truly ‘unveils’ the wiles and schemes of demonic activities.
      Always good to hear from you sister, thank you! ⚘

  3. Many years ago my husband, daughter and I were riding the subway home from church late at night. A man was walking down the isle of the subway car selling newspapers. As he walked down the isle no one was interested and he just kept on going, that is until he came to us. My husband politely said no thank you. He angrily replied “no thank you, no thank you, God wants nothing to do with you mister” as he lingered by where we were sitting. Our Bibles weren’t even visible.

  4. Lisa Beth, thank you for this post. I got the chills reading about the woman on the bus. I agree we believers take the spiritual battle that surrounds us and we are a part of much too casually.
    I would mention that while Satan’s attacks can be harrowing, as the Bible describes, he can also tempt and mislead with the beautiful and pleasurable as Scripture also describes. I think of the many believers who have been drawn into ecumenism with false churches and false gospels via smiling preachers with sermons encouraging love and unity with all who name Christ.

    • Thank you Tom, your points are undoubtedly true. Those devilish schemes are fitted to the many who don’t read their Bibles. ‘Feelings’ have replaced discernment.
      As apostasy grows i pray the remnant stands apart and strong. Thanks again Tom, its always good to hear from you.

  5. Wow I don’t know if I want to be in a NYC subway too after what you describe…or even the bus! Well, not with my kids. You are right there’s a spirtual warfare going on; may we see this and may many believers wake up

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