This series is dedicated to a Man of God who is after God’s own heart. My Pastor, Elder William Eakins, II wrote a book titled Conversations with the Devil and in this book, he goes into great detail about the different strategies and tactics that the devil uses to wreak havoc in our lives. The Bible tells us in John 10:10 that the devil comes to steal, kill, and destroy. That is his job, but Pastor Eakins exposes how the devil plans to do that in his book. Being a student of the Word under the guidance of this Man of God, I am blessed to learn how to navigate this world and maintain my righteous walk with the Lord.
This is part 1 of an 8-part series about the different conversations we have with the devil on a regular basis. Part 1 is based on the scripture Genesis 3:1-7 and it deals with Seduction. In case you are not familiar with the term “seduction” or what it means to “seduce” someone, it means “to lead astray.” When someone is seduced, they end up doing things that are out of character for them. Eve was perfectly made by God. She loved her husband Adam and was obedient to God’s commands that were passed down to her from Adam. She followed her husband as he was led by God. However, along came the devil (Satan) planting a seed of doubt. First, he made Eve “question the authenticity of God’s Word” in verse 1 when he asked her “Yea, hath God said…” Well, that’s a loaded question! What he is really wanting to ask is, “Are you sure God said that,” or “Did God really say that.” We need to be clear on the Word of God. We need to study God’s Word and know without a doubt what He has said because the devil wants you to question what God said. If that doesn’t work, the devil will continue the conversation because he is relentless and determined to complete his job.
Next, the devil made Eve “question the truth of God’s Word” in verse 4 when he stated, “Ye shall not surely die…” We all know that Eve did not die physically, but she did die spiritually, after her conversation with the devil. However, the devil seduced Eve by playing on her thoughts about physical death and how it would not happen just by eating the forbidden fruit. Since the devil twisted God’s words, Eve was left with doubt, not realizing that her spiritual death would be much worse than her physical death.
The devil proceeded with his seduction as he tells Eve in verse 5, his version of what will really happen if she eats of the forbidden fruit. Now he is making Eve “question the intent of God’s Word” as he tells her that God is keeping them away from the fruit because their “eyes will be opened” and they “shall be as gods.” The devil wants us to think that God is keeping good things from us even though His Word tells us in Psalm 84:11 that God does not hold anything good from those who are righteous, or walking “uprightly.” The devil is the ruler of this world, and he knows how to use “the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life” to seduce those who are not aware of his tactics (1 John 2:16). Genesis 3:6 shows us that Eve fell victim to all three. First, she “saw that the tree was good for food,” which is the lust of the flesh. Then she saw “that it was pleasant to the eyes,” which is the lust of the eyes. Finally, she saw that it was “a tree to be desired to make one wise,” which is the pride of life.
Have you ever been seduced by the devil? Perhaps you were seduced but did not realize it until later. Perhaps you did not recognize the signs of seduction when you were being seduced. The bible says the devil seduced Eve with subtilty. I want to tell you about the “five stages of seduction” that Pastor Eakins reveals in his book. I am hoping this will keep you from the subtle seduction of the devil.
Once the devil plants his seed of doubt, the victim can find themselves in any one of these five stages. Stage One is “Abhorrence,” and it is where we hate something or someone so severely that we want to get as far away from it as we can. At this first stage, we hate the devil, and it is likely that he will not be able to convince us that what he is saying is worthwhile, which is why that is not where the story ends. Remember, the devil is persistent, and he will not take no for an answer.
So, he moves to Stage Two, which is “Tolerance.” First, we abhor the devil and want to be far away from him. However, as the devil wears us down with the conversation, we begin to tolerate his presence. We know he is there, but we try to ignore him. We allow him to stay near us even though his mission to steal, kill, and destroy has not changed. The only difference between this stage and the next, which is “Acceptance,” is that we don’t have to agree with the devil to tolerate him. On the other hand, once we move to Stage Three, which is “Acceptance,” we are shifting our stance and coming into agreement with the devil. Perhaps the conversation has shifted to us saying, “You know what, you’re right.” Perhaps we are thinking the devil is just misunderstood. He is a fallen angel, after all.
Acceptance is a very dangerous place to be because what comes next will quickly pull us away from God. This is the point where Eve found herself eating the forbidden fruit. Stage Four is “Indulgence” and it is right where the devil wants us to be. He wants us to partake in the things that this world has to offer instead of the things of God. Once you reach this stage of the seduction process, it is hard to find your way back. However, nothing is too hard for God! When we cry out to the Lord, he will hear our cry and deliver us from the evil one. Unfortunately, some people reach this stage, and it becomes their point of no return.
What follows next is Stage Five, which is known as “Preference.” So many people prefer the things of this world over the things of God. The process of seduction was complete with the indulgence, but now it has been taken to a whole other level. In the beginning, it was hard to convince you to listen to the devil, but at the end of the process, it is hard to convince you to listen to God. Your conversation with the devil has done a complete 180 degree turn. What was up is now down and no one can tell you otherwise.
The devil starts the process of seduction, but he cannot complete the process without us. We are the ones who change our mind and decide to listen to the conversation with the devil. This is why we need to always wear the whole armor of God, so we can stand against the seduction of the devil. He cannot seduce us if we are protected with our armor. We need our belt of truth so the devil cannot convince of that the truth is not true. We need our breastplate of righteousness anchored to our belt of truth, so we stay on the righteous path. We need our helmet of salvation that protects our mind from the thoughts the devil is trying to make us think. We need to keep our mind stayed on Jesus.
I caution you today to not listen to the conversations with the devil. He means you no good! Stay close to God so you can recognize the signs of seduction. If you find yourself going down that path, immediately seek the face of God and pray for deliverance. God is “able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think.” (Ephesians 3:20)