His story 13: The devil

So when we look to others to give us value we are making them our gods, but we are also making ourselves gods because we try to value others in the same way as we look to them for value and also because we are part of the same creation as they are.
We are taking the place that belongs to God alone.
But can we truly be our own god?
Thankfully the answer is no.
We may not acknowledge God as such and sit on the throne of our own lives yet only to a degree.
Now I may write things now and then that seem a contradiction to you but you have to see it this way.
The truth is like a string on an instument, attached on two opposing sides.
It is one string only, yet it cannot produce a proper sound until it has the right tension.
It works the same with truth.
The different parts of that truth need to be in the right balance, in the right place.
Then it will produce a beautiful sound.

Thankfully God protected us from truly becoming our own gods.
We gave ourselves the place that God should have by not submitting to him, by not acknowledging him above us.
Yet that does not mean we now have all the autority over our own lives.
He gave us a free will, even in choosing whether we would submit to him or not.
Howewever if He would give us all power over our own lives if we rejected him then we would truly become gods.
And if we did, there would be no way for us to ever be saved from our foolish decision to rebel against him.
There would be no return.
There would be no end to the harm we would do to his kingdom.
No end of the discord this would bring in the earth.
Thankfully He did not put that much of a responsibility on us.
We can treat ourselves as the highest autority in our lives, as gods, but we can never truly become one.
This means though that if we will not allow God the highest place in our lives, someone else will have it.
Initially it may seem that we gave that place to other people, and to a degree we did.
Yet the truth is that there is a higher autority above us to whom we submit when we reject God’s sovereignty.
I know this autority is even less popular then God, but he does exist.
It is probably one of his greatest strategies to make people believe that he is not even there.
If you do not believe your enemy exists then he can do a lot more harm to you then when you are aware of the danger he poses.
You probably guessed I am now talking about the devil.
Now of course he is no threat to God.
He is not fighting with God on an equel basis for who gets all the power.
That belongs to God alone.
It is true he is an enemy of God, but only because God allows it for his own purposes.
Once those purposes are fulfilled the devil will lose all his power that he now still has.
I believe that one of those purposes is that God could give us a free will.
He could have done that without the devil of course but then we could not be redeemed if we rebelled against him.
We would become through and through evil, just like the devil who once was a glorious angel, a servant of God to whom He had bestowed great splendor, became evil itself.

The devil has a free will just as God gave a free will to us.
However he started to question the goodness of God.
He stopped believing God had his good in mind and became proud of all the glory God had given him. He forgot that God was the source of all his beauty and power.
He was meant to be a great blessing to the kingdom of God yet instead he became the downfall of many by dragging them down with him in his rebellion against God.
He got convinced that God was holding out on him and that his existence would be even better if he himself had the place of God.
Of course he was not thinking straight, because God had made him and sustained his life.
So how could he even continue to exist if he would replace God?
Yet we are copying his behavior by not wanting God to be above us and trying to take his place.
I believe because the devil seduces us into doing this.
In the book Genesis in the bible we can read about how God created us and placed us in a garden.
In the middle of that garden stood two trees.
The only tree the first people, Adam and Eve, were not allowed to eat from was the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
If they ate from that tree they would know the evil that is the result of not obeying God.
It is interesting that is was a tree of both good and evil.
This shows me that evil often takes the form of something good.
It can hold something that is not even bad in itself. Yet because it is done in rebellion against God it is evil and it temps us to do it because it looks so good.
The bible describes how the devil appeared in the form of a snake and started to lie against Adam and Eve.
He asked them what God had told them about that tree and then plainly stated this was not true.
He lied by saying God was a liar!
This was the most vital moment in history up to that point.
All of heaven was bending over in full expectation to see what the response of these first people would be against this heinous accusation.
The charge that God was not good and was holding out on them.
This was their chance to show trust to their Maker.
Now they could exercise the gift of free will God had given them.
Either by returning his love for them through obedience, which would be the appropriate response to his gift of life, or by blatantly rebelling against his instructions, which would be an utter expression of distrust and dishonor.
Taking their eyes from the Giver of life towards his gifts.
Even worse to look to themselves.
So was it true, this accusation?
Was God really holding something back from them?
Did they have to do something, to eat from that tree, to become like God?
That was the devil’s temptation.
They did not realise they already were made in his image.
They had even been given the great autority to rule the earth.
To subdue and replenish it and to multiply.
They had been given the command to reign with God and to create with him.
Does that not closely resemble being god?
There was only one thing that made them different from God.
The fact that He was their Creator and they were his creations.
They actually got the blessing of not having to sustain themselves the way God sustains his own being.
The blessing of being his children.
Loved by a Father that would always take care of them.
The blessing that He holds out to each and every one of us.
But He gives us a free choice.
He is intent on having a relationship with us that is based on trust.
And so the devil gave them a chance to speed up their decision to put their trust in their Creator.
Would they take it?
Unfortunately we all know the answer.
Although they had been given the full ability to resist the devil they chose not to.
And so many of us to this day have given in to the temptation to mistrust God and not just wanting to be like him, but to be him, which is all the devil wanted.
He knew very well that if we gave in to his temptation to disobey God he himself would get power over us.
And that is what happened.

To be continued…

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