Defeat Through the First Man in Eden (continued)
Black Week - in Eden (continued)
satan, the Tempter
satan is in Eden with the deliberate, diabolical purpose of tempting Adam and Eve to do just what he himself had done - through an act of self-will to step outside the circle of God's will, to dethrone God by enthroning self. Thus he would gain recruits for his rebel ranks, for they would then become his subjects and his slaves to do his will and his work. Where and how would he begin?
Genesis 3:1: Now the serpent was more subtle.
"The serpent" - the devil is primarily the deceiver, and he plays this role the first time we meet him on the page of the divine revelation and in human history. He incarnates himself.
"More subtle" - satan's aim was to reach Adam, God's representative man in whom the whole race was latent and in whom God had vested administrative authority in governmental affairs. satan must gain control over the race and the earth. Nothing short of world dominion was his goal. His throne must rule over God's earthly creation, human and material. He is out for the reversal of everything that is according to the divine purpose and will. The command of God had been given to "the man" before "the woman" had been created by God to be his helpmate. Therefore the responsibility for obedience to it rested primarily upon "the man." Only as he disobeyed could the race be taken into sin and death (Romans 5:12-19).
"The serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field." The fallen angel is still "full of wisdom" and knows he can never tempt Adam by a frontal attack. He must capture Adam without letting him know he was being captured; he would use the tactic of infiltration. He would reach Adam through Eve. He would not tempt him directly but would come up on his blind side and get him to hearken to Eve's voice rather than to God's. He has never since departed from this most subtle and successful tactic. This very day the great apostate is tempting countless persons to join his ranks by listening to some silver-tongued "minister of satan" (2 Corinthians 11:13-15) in the pulpit or some "false teacher" in the theological seminary or professor's chair who "brings in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them" (2 Peter 2:1), instead of listening to God as He speaks through His inspired Word. satan even tried to tempt our Lord through the voice of Peter as he urged our Lord not to take the way of the Cross (Matthew 16:22, 23). He would take the line of least resistance and begin with the woman upon whom he would use "subtlety" to corrupt her mind regarding the truth and so turn her from the Lord Himself. She herself recognized this tactic of the devil, but too late.
2 Corinthians 11:3: But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve, through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
Genesis 3:13: The woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.
Was there a definite plan in his approach? Did the serpent choose just the right time and occasion? Did satan come when she was very near the forbidden tree so that she "saw" it, rather than the tree of life from which God would have her freely eat? Did he choose a time when Eve was specially susceptible because of some desire or ambition, altogether right and worthy in itself if kept wholly within the circle of God's will? Whatever the answer, fallen lucifer "who has lost all of his sanctity but none of his sagacity" knew exactly when and how to approach Eve. This "angel of light" knew also the exact mode of appeal to secure success. He kept ever before him his goal. He must get Eve to make a choice of SELF against GOD. To accomplish this he must destroy her confidence in God. How would he make the appeal to that end?
(continued with # 15)