Satan Around Every Corner?

Lots of Christians look for Satan behind every bush. Wake up in a sour mood? Must be Satan. Argue with a family member? The Devil strikes again. Bad weather wreaks havoc on the commute? Who else could be working in that? No one but Satan!

Those who see Satan in all of life’s negatives often point to Job 2 as evidence: the Lord used Satan to test Job; therefore, all the negatives that happen in our lives are also the work of Satan. However, that conclusion doesn’t follow the evidence. Satan certainly did afflict Job, but there’s nothing in the Bible to suggest that all our suffering is a result of similar testing. Satan brought about Job’s suffering, but that doesn’t mean that we should see the Devil behind every negative in our own lives. There are at least four causes of our suffering.

  • Satan: Job 1–2 is the classic passage explicating Satan’s role in human suffering, as he pled with God for the opportunity bring pain to Job. But Satan’s rare appearances in Scripture give way to other, more significant causes of human suffering . . .
  • Personal Sin: Much of what befalls us we bring upon ourselves through our own sin or weakness. King Saul lived much of his reign in anguish after his disobedience left him outside of God’s plans for the future (1 Samuel 15:24–28).
  • The Sins of Others: We often suffer the consequences of someone else’s sin. Daniel was exiled to Babylon not because of something he did, but because the sins of his forefathers led God to decide that exile was in order.
  • A Broken World: Finally, many things happen in this world as a result of the brokenness that comes with the presence of sin. All is not as it should be. Hurricanes wreak destruction. Fires decimate homes. Sin has broken our world.

So where does your suffering come from? The Bible offers no evidence that Job ever knew about Satan’s role in his ill health or the death of his children, servants, and livestock. Suggesting as much in our own lives is probably taking it a step too far. Rather, our suffering should prompt us to correct wickedness in our own lives, forgive those who have sinned against us, and reach out to God for comfort and guidance as we seek to persevere in the righteousness to which He has called us.

Copyright © 2013 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.

Posted in Sin and tagged .

Accuracy, clarity, and practicality all describe the Bible-teaching ministry of Charles R. Swindoll. Chuck is the chairman of the board at Insight for Living and the chancellor of Dallas Theological Seminary. Chuck also serves as the senior pastor of Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, Texas, where he is able to do what he loves most—teach the Bible to willing hearts. His focus on practical Bible application has been heard on the Insight for Living radio broadcast since 1979.

ఖచ్చితత్వం, స్పష్టత మరియు ఆచరణాత్మకత అన్నీ చార్లెస్ ఆర్. స్విన్డాల్ యొక్క బైబిల్-బోధనా పరిచర్యను వివరిస్తాయి. చక్ ఇన్సైట్ ఫర్ లివింగ్ కు బోర్డు ఛైర్మన్ మరియు డల్లాస్ థియోలాజికల్ సెమినరీకి ఛాన్సలర్. చక్ టెక్సాస్‌లోని ఫ్రిస్కోలోని స్టోన్‌బ్రయర్ కమ్యూనిటీ చర్చ్ యొక్క సీనియర్ పాస్టర్‌గా కూడా పనిచేస్తున్నారు, అక్కడ ఆయన చాలా ఇష్టపడేదాన్ని చేయగలుగుతున్నాడు-ఇష్టపడే హృదయాలకు బైబిల్ నేర్పిస్తున్నారు. ఆచరణాత్మక బైబిల్ అనువర్తనంపై ఆయన దృష్టి 1979 నుండి ఇన్సైట్ ఫర్ లివింగ్ రేడియో ప్రసారంలో వినబడుచున్నది.