What a ridiculous title for a chapter; or is it?  It’s one of those no brainers.  If you knew someone was trying to do you bodily harm, would you stand still and let them do what they wished? Probably not!  If Satan appeared before you and said, “Come on, let me take you to hell where forever and always you will be in pain, burning in a pit of fire,” what would you say?  Well, duh, I don’t think so!  That’s how we know that Satan could never just tell you the truth.  That is why Satan is known as the great deceiver, because he won’t hand you a boulder and say jump into that lake and die.  He will slowly fill your pant pockets with pebbles and give you the idea that you can walk on water.  He’ll row you out to the center of the lake, building up your confidence during the entire trip.  Then with a final word, or push of encouragement, he’ll say "you can do it, get out there and show the world how great you are!I hope you’re a good swimmer.


When I speak or write about Satan, and how he deceives people I remember a story told to me by a friend, Pastor Steve.  He told of a young man who died and went to heaven where he stood in front of the Lord for judgment.  The Lord said, "I will let you choose between heaven and hell.  You must go and visit hell and then make your choice.The young man said, "I would rather not", but Jesus said "go".  When the young man got to hell he walked along pristine beaches of white sand.  The water was as clear as crystal.  Beautiful scantly dressed women were all around promising to fulfill the deepest desires of the man’s heart.  With that vision the man went back to heaven to choose.  He chose hell.  When he got back to hell nothing was the same.  The man in great pain cried out, where are the beaches, the water, and the women?  Satan replied, with a wry smile, yesterday you were a potential customer, but today you bought the truth. 


Could that happen to you?  Could Satan tempt you with the dreams of your heart?  Could he offer fame, fortune, or greatness, if you but pay him homage?  What would be your response?  Could you, like Jesus say, “Away from me, Satan!For it is written: "Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.”


Satan, as the great deceiver, also has a way of puffing up pride in a person.  Pride is one of those things that can make a person refuse the free gift of life.  An example of this, unfortunately, is a true story.  When I married my wife, I inherited her friends.  Marna is a close friend of my wife, and Marna is Jewish.  Being the instrument of the Lord, I asked Marna, “If you were to appear before Jesus in heaven, and he gave you one last chance to proclaim him as King and Lord, would you?”  Her response was, “no, because that would be saying that my whole life on earth was a lie.”  Personally, I’d rather live in heaven knowing my life on earth was a lie, than to burn with self-satisfaction in hell.  That’s like cutting off one’s nose to spite your face!


Satan is also known as the accuser of the brethren, and when you accuse your brothers and sisters in Christ, you are doing the work of the devil.  Words were meant to build up the brethren, and not to tear them down.  Please don’t tear one another down in order to build oneself up. 


Finally, Satan will always try to make you feel inadequate.  If he can’t get you by building you up with promises, he’ll get you by tearing you down with self-doubt.  He will plant the thought that you are the world’s worst sinner.  In fact, throughout the annals of history, there has been no one worse than you.  That is why you feel as if God could never forgive you.  He’ll make life seem hopeless.  He’ll blanket you in a cloud of darkness and have you stumbling through life.  Remember this, you can never block out darkness. You can only let light in!  That light is Jesus.


Satan has so many lies and comes to us in so many ways that it’s hard to warn you about them all.  To the Christian he’ll say there is no such thing as the devil. "You’re all going to heaven." which causes apathy, and death.   He’ll say to another that there is no God.  When you die you just die.  Your body rots in the bowels of the earth.  And finally to another he’ll say "God is everything, you are God.  We all make up the Godhead.So many lies, I wonder how he keeps them all straight?


I guess you’re wondering why Satan is working so hard to kill you.  The only reason I can see is Misery Loves Company.  He already knows his fate and doesn’t want to live it alone.   It’s hard for me to fathom what Hell will be.  So many souls lost, worrying solely about themselves.  Focusing on their pain, their loneliness, and instead of sharing it with a brother or sister, they go it alone.  Yes, Hell is one lonely place.  Although there are many there, it’s divided into towns with a population of 1.  Jesus said he was going to heaven to prepare a mansion for you, well Satan has a whole town waiting for you.  The town is called Me-ville. 


I’m about to go out on a limb here, because the next thing I say is not as strongly rooted in scripture, as I would like.  In three places, Job 1:12, & 2:6 and Luke 22: 31, scriptures show Satan asking/getting permission to attack a true son of the Lord.  I will use Luke’s writing as the example that I wish to make:  “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat.  But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.  And when you have turned back strengthen your brothers.”  I believe with my whole heart that before Satan can attack a true believer, he must first ask God’s permission.  I also believe that God knows how much you can handle and he will not give you any more than that.  I might be out there floating with this one, so if you have any in-sight, please let me know.


Satan is out there, alive, and he’s looking for you.  Like Elmer Fudd he’s stalking this world, “shh I’m huntin' people, (laughter).”  “Stand still you screwy person, I’m trying to kill you.”  I think it could be fun to play Bugs Bunny and just frustrate the heck out of him.  Give him a big kiss, smack him on the back of his ugly head, then jump onto the cross of Christ and watch him writhe in pain!