While reading Genesis 1-3, I was reminded of how easily we still believe Satan’s lie today.
Satan craftily questioned, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’? . . . You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil” (3:3-5).
With this lie, he implied that1) God was holding back something good from them 2) God’s words were not reliable 3) God didn’t want them to be like Him; they had to work their own way there.
But God held nothing good back; “out of the ground the LORD God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food” (1:9). He restricted Satan to only one tree, and He clearly forewarned Adam and Eve about it (v 17). God protected Adam and Eve while giving them free choice.
God’s words were reliable. Everything He said would happen did happen, even the parts God did not want (i.e. death).
Above all, while Satan made it sound like Adam and Eve had to do something to be like God, the truth was that God had already created them to be like Him: “Then God said, Let us make man in our image, according to Our likeness… so God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (v 26,27).
God holds nothing good back from us today – He gives us many blessings and longs to give more. He warns us clearly that sin hurts ourselves and others, for sin is the transgression of the law, and the law is based on love. When we choose not to love, we choose to hurt.
God’s word is reliable today- so when He says, “He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:10-12), we must believe.
“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (John 3:13-18).
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together” (Romans 8:14-17).
“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure” (1 John 3:1-3).
God’s word is clear that He is the one adopting us through His Spirit, bestowing love on us, and calling us His children. We are designed to be in His image. Our part is to accept God’s gift of adoption through Jesus and believe that we are His children and stop believing Satan’s lies, that we have to work our own way there, that God does not accept us yet.
As we believe, we are. And so we are changed.
Today, do you still believe Satan’s lie? Or will you finally accept God’s truth, that You are His beloved child, and that He longs to be Your personal Father today?
Abba, Father, I choose today to believe and live as Your child. Today, as Satan tempts me to believe his lies, please bring to my mind Your words of truth and help me to cling in faith to them and claim them for myself. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.