Throughout the Bible, we are consistently warned that those who love God are hated by Satan. As Ephesians 6:12 states, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
So here are 3 signs that mean Satan is trying to weaken your trust in God.
1. If Other People Are Trying to Convince You Sin Is Not Sin, This Could Be a Spiritual Attack Meant to Weaken Your Trust in God
Satan doesn’t usually attack people in supernatural or visible ways like demons are portrayed in the movies. Rather, when Satan attacks us, he often tries to get us to believe lies through the influence of ungodly people.
Satan uses the world. When I say “the world,” I don’t mean the planet earth. In the Bible “the world” refers to all the people who are not following God. You are either a Christian or you are in the world. According to Ephesians 2:1-2, everyone in the world is actually following the devil’s lies. It states:
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience. . . .”
Because people who do not have the Holy Spirit in them are easily influenced by the devil, spiritual warfare often uses people to deliver attacks against you. When other people are trying to get you to believe lies about God and enter into sinful living, this is often actually spiritual warfare. 1 John 3:7-8 states:
Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.”
Satan will try to weaken your trust in God by delivering lies through other people to you, trying to convince you that sin is not actually sin. Notice what John said, “let no one deceive you . . . Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil.” The world will try to deceive you by trying to convince you that what the Bible forbids is not actually forbidden.
When people are trying to make you feel stupid for believing the plain and simple words in the Bible that clearly state certain actions are actually sin, don’t be deceived. Believe what God has said through his word rather than what Satan is saying through the world.
2. Satan Will Try to Weaken Your Trust in God By Tempting You to Trust in Material Possessions
One of the reasons God requires us to have faith is because God is spirit and you can’t see him as Jesus explained in John 4:23-24. This doesn’t mean there is no physical evidence for God. Romans 1:20 states that creation itself is evidence of the Creator. Rather, God being spirit means that you cannot actually see Jesus’s literal face right now like we will when he returns one day; therefore, since we can’t literally see God right now, we need faith to believe in him since faith is believing in what we can’t see according to Hebrews 11:1.
When Satan is seeking to weaken our faith in God, one way he will do this is through tempting us to put our hopes in what we can see – in material possessions. 1 Timothy 6:9-10 states:
But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.”
This passage does not say wealth and money are bad. Rather, it states the desire to be rich and the love of money are bad. So Satan’s attack will not be to make you rich or poor. Rather, Satan is trying to get both the rich and the poor to put their hope in money rather than in the Lord. For as Jesus said in Matthew 6:24, “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”
Satan knows this truth as well. Therefore, to get you to not serve God he will tempt you to serve money.
3. Satan Will Try to Destroy Your Faith in God By Blinding You to the Glory of the Gospel
As all true Christians know, we can only be saved through the gospel of Jesus Christ. We can’t be saved by our works, we can’t be saved by what family we were born into, and we can’t be saved through being a good person. We can only be saved by placing our faith in Jesus Christ, repenting of sin, and depending on God’s grace alone for salvation (Ephesians 2:8-10).
This is why above all things Satan’s main desire is to get people to not see how glorious the gospel of Jesus Christ really is. For as 2 Corinthians 4:3-4 states:
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”
“The god of this world” is a reference to Satan. His primary desire is to keep people from being saved by keeping them blinded to the light of the gospel. But even after we see the light of the gospel and are saved, Satan will continue to attack us by trying to get us to turn our gaze away from Jesus. The less we look at and depend on the gospel, the more sin we will produce in our lives. The gospel is not just the way to be saved; the gospel also provides the power we need to live for Christ every day as Christians.
Satan knows that Christians need to rely on the gospel every day so they can live for God. Therefore, Satan will tempt Christians who believed in the gospel to then start living their life in their own strength rather than through the Holy Spirit. In Galatians 3:1-3, Paul states:
O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?”
Therefore, if you are being tempted to try to obey God through your own strength, this is actually a sign that Satan may be trying to “bewitch” you with lies. The gospel is not just the way to be saved; rather, the gospel also provides the power we need to live for God every day. When you know that through the gospel you are new creation and the Holy Spirit lives in you, you will be empowered to live a glorifying and powerful life for God.