Our Nemesis and His Many Tricks

Matthew 10:24-25 ESV

“A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household.”

We, as followers of Jesus Christ, should expect to be treated in like manner as Jesus was if we are truly following (obeying) him, if we are like him, and if we are doing and saying the kinds of things which he did and said.

They called Jesus, who was/is God the Son, Beelzebul, the prince of the devils. They accused him of being of Satan even though he was/is God. So, we should not be surprised if we are accused in like manner, we who are of our Lord’s household.

Those who use such tactics against us most likely will do so in a manipulative manner so as to try to convince us that we are going the wrong direction, or they will attempt to convince us that we are confused, or mentally ill, or that we are imagining things that don’t exist.

For, the enemy against our souls will use all sorts of tricks against us to try to get us upset emotionally. He loves mind games to try to throw us off balance. He will try to torment us, provoke us, and he will scheme against us. And he will lie to us and against us, too, because he wants us to retreat.

Our enemy will speak evil against us to other people, too, to try to turn them against us so that they will not listen to us. And since he is a master manipulator, he can be very persuasive. Thus, he uses very charming and persuasive people to do his dirty work for him, too.

Matthew 10:26-33 ESV

“So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.”

We are to have no fear of those who can kill the body but who can’t kill our souls. Yes, they may have the power to destroy our reputations and to manipulate others into rejecting us and turning against us. And they may provoke us, say all manner of evil against us, or try to manipulate us into retreating, but we must stand firm and not give into their tricks.

We are to keep on speaking the word of God and all that the Lord teaches us through the word, which he wants us to share with others for their benefit. We are to keep speaking his messages of salvation – of faith, repentance, obedience, and submission to Christ as Lord of our lives.

And we must continue to confront evil, to call it what it is, to expose the fruitless deeds of darkness, and to warn against deception and mind manipulation, and to call people to follow the Lord God and to serve him only, and to let him be their only master.

In all of this, we must keep remembering that our God is still on the throne. He is still God. He remains all powerful. And he is still completely sovereign over all that he has made. So, when he allows such things in our lives, he will also equip us, and he will strengthen us to endure, and he will use such times as this and us for his glory and purposes.

So, don’t let the enemy, via other human beings, take you out. Don’t be convinced that they have power over you and that there is no hope. Just keep trusting the Lord, and keep doing what he says, for if we acknowledge Jesus on this earth, he will acknowledge us before God the Father. And please know that if you deny Jesus, he will deny you before the Father.

Matthew 10:34-39 ESV

“Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”

Jesus Christ, our creator God, did not put us on this earth so that we will be loved and accepted by everyone. He didn’t put us here so that we will live our lives for the approval of other humans. He put us here to live for him and for his purposes and to be used of him for his praise and glory.

And when we truly follow Jesus Christ with our lives, as did many of the saints of old, and we do what he says, and we say what he says, and we go where he sends us, we may have many people turn against us. They will reject us, and they will not want to be with us.

Even members of our own families will/may turn against us and will hate us, reject us, not want to associate with us, and they may turn others against us, too. For, they will not approve of us following Jesus Christ, or they will not approve of us of following Jesus Christ with wholehearted devotion.

But Jesus doesn’t see things the way many humans do. He says if we love other people, including our family members, more than we love him, and so we compromise our faith and practices to have family approval, that we are not worthy of him. For, he wants our all on the altar of sacrifice laid.

Basically, what this comes down to is, to follow Jesus Christ with our lives, we must die with Christ to sin and self, and we must live to Christ and to his righteousness, for this is why he died for us, to deliver us from our slavery to sin so we would become slaves of God and of his righteousness.

But if we are not willing to die with Christ to sin and to deny self and to follow him in surrender and in obedience to his will and to his ways, then we will lose our lives for eternity. But if we willingly die to sin, deny self, and follow our Lord in obedience, then we will have eternal life with God.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 6:44; Jn 14:23-24; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10, 19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15, 21; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8]

Based off the song “Edelweiss”

Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ,
Every morning You greet me.
Meek and pure, truth and light,
You look pleased now to meet me.

Flourishing, growing in Him each day,
Live with Him forever.
Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ,
Blessed to know Him forever.

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