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Strategies of the Enemy (Offenses) — Part Two

offense

By Rod Nichols

In the first installment, I discussed the first of the devils strategies for keeping us from developing an intimate relationship with our heavenly Father – distractions. This week we’ll cover the second strategy – offenses.

Strategy #2: Offenses

This is the one that seems to cause the greatest amount of damage within the church. If the enemy can’t distract you from the path laied out by God, then he will do everything possible to get you offended at your Pastor, someone at church, a friend, or a family member. Offenses have caused more church splits and more people to leave the church than any other strategy the enemy uses.

In Nehemiah 6:1-7 we can see a perfect example of how Satan works. Nehemiah had committed to rebuilding the walls, so the enemy motivated Sanballet and Geshem to try to distract Nehemiah by inviting him to come out and meet them in the valley of Ono. That of course was an attempt to distract him. When that didn’t work, then they sent a letter accusing Nehemiah of leading a rebellion. The enemy wanted to stop Nehemiah from completing his God-given task, but he knew the truth and refused to get offended.

As you receive God-given tasks, you too will will have to fight off bad reports, gossips, liars, and slanderers. Nehemiah 6:8 gives us the answer for avoiding the offense trap. First, when you find out that someone is saying things about you, go to the person and let them know that what they are saying is not true. Second, speak the truth to them in love. Third, never fight fire with fire.

The devil is after your testimony. If he can get you offended at someone then you will be more focused on what they did to you than what you are supposed to be doing for God. Plus, if people around you know that you are offended at someone, you lose your testimony with them. Matthew 6:15 reads, “But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” If you are harboring offense and not forgiving your brother or sister, then the Lord cannot forgive you.

Do your best to avoid getting offended, but if you feel an offense coming on, deal with it quickly, so that the devil doesn’t have a chance to tarnish your testimony.

©2010 Rod Nichols. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Bio:
Rod Nichols is a pastor, author and speaker as well as a professional writer. He’s written nine books and hundreds of articles. He and his wife Karen have been married since 1988 and have five children and five grandchildren. They make beautiful Washington State their home but enjoy traveling to other parts of the country.