Born-again believers are to be wise, they are to be “wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” (Matt. 10:16) Therefore, one must understand the serpent that is spoken of in the Scriptures, and at the same time seek for the wisdom of what it means to be gentle as doves. Neither of these will be accomplished without due diligence to the studying of the Word of God.
Wisdom, the wisdom that only comes from the Lord, is not automatically imparted upon salvation, it must be sought after, and I fear that many have determined not to do this. A concise study on Satan, his ways and thoughts is not exactly a top priority for many believers, you will not see a lot of notices on the billboards outside of churches proclaiming that they will soon be holding a once a week study for seven weeks on Satan, in fact, it would be frowned upon by nearly all in the congregation, and would cause quite a stir in the local community, and so instead of being or even seeking how to be wise as serpents, they instead plod around, unsure of themselves in an evil and unjust world, unable to pray properly for themselves or others, unaware of the wiles of the adversary, and unable to use the shield properly that has been provided for them.
It was an excellent idea, this deceit of Satan, to minimize his personality, his influence on the world of man in their minds, to attempt, and in most cases, to achieve in getting the lost to believe he no longer exists, that the malevolent force of evil personified is nothing more than a construct of the imaginations of mankind. The wisdom that understands these truths can only be imparted to an individual by the power of the Holy Spirit, by the grace of God, and serves only one purpose, as all of the life of a born-again believers should, to glorify God.
No man ever born can stand against Satan, he is the father of lies, (John 8:44) he is the great dragon, (Rev. 12:9) he is subtle beyond anything anyone can imagine, but that does not mean that we are to fear him, and it most definitely does not mean that we should ignore him, not for one moment. If you do not know your enemy’s tactics, you will be defeated by him, it is not enough to simply resist him, (James 4:7) you cannot just repeat the words of Christ (Matt. 16:23) and expect him to depart from your presence, there are those that tried that and were torn asunder. (Acts 19:13-16) The wisdom that we speak of here is not for sale on the market, it must be sought out in great trembling and humility, and must be accompanied with the spirit of servitude, for this is not an enemy we speak of here, this is The enemy, and once he notices you, he does not forget you.
This is the reason that so many who profess Christ are being deceived in these days, it is why they are falling into the most simplest of traps, they have refused to study their enemy, they see the task as almost sacrilegious, as an offense to the Lord, and so as the days progress toward the end of this age, many more will succumb to his wiles. It is one of the main reasons that he has exerted his influence over the saved in the last few years towards an inward search only for the Lord, all evil in their minds coalesces only towards themselves, they are concerned with self, with their walk, and have completely taken their eyes off of the big picture, as it were. They cannot even recognize the darts (Eph. 6:16) much less use their shield effectively, and when they do, their thoughts are directed only towards their own personal relationship to the Lord.
These have forgotten, or never learned how to use the sword (Eph. 6:17) properly, they have believed that all judging is judgmental, they have been taught to never offend and have forgotten how to reprove and rebuke in love, and they have no wisdom. They have completely misinterpreted 1 Cor. 3:18 and have not understood the difference between not being wise in the ways of the world and standing in the power of the Lord against our one true enemy, the enemy for these has become themselves, the negative thoughts that pass through our minds, the moments of doubt and mistrust, the life not fully lived in the presence and submission of the Lord, they would not recognize the enemy unless he is attacking them, and then would only confront him when it affects them personally.
Jesus got in a boat one day with His friends, sailed over to a small place where the Gadarenes lived, cast a demon out of a man, and then got back in the boat and left. (Luke 8:39-40) There was a singular purpose for His visit that day, and it is up to you to figure out what it was.
“Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.” (Jude 1:9) Do not get this idea that you are some kind of demon slayer, that you can stand your ground when, and if, Satan decides to notice you, you cannot, but if you do not study your enemy, you will most definitely fall at his first attack.
There is only one Book that can be counted on as truth, it is the only instructional manual that is necessary for how a man is to live, how to serve well, and how to stand in the day of evil, (Eph. 6:13) if you do not study it, nothing that has been written here will avail you anything, and there is a very good chance that you will fail in the task that you have been sent here to accomplish.