Genesis 3:1 “. . .Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?”
Satan had learned from his experience that he was not powerful enough to defeat God. But he was longing for vengeance after his humiliating defeat in heaven. So, he settled for trying to wound Him deeply by focusing on the people He created and loved.
God had told Adam and Eve not to eat from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. And all of His creation in agreement rang with the foundational truth of the universe, ‘God is good’. But Satan slyly challenged, ‘Is He really?’
The man and woman in the garden fell for Satan’s seduction. Even though they knew the heart of their God, the people He loved chose not to trust Him. His most loved creation rejected Him. As He had warned them, death entered because of their decision to betray Him. And, God watched as the man and the woman fell under the curse of death.
Throughout our lives as Christians, we will have many opportunities to trust or not to trust our heavenly Father’s heart. God will, through His Word or through His Spirit, offer us a choice, asking us to follow and obey Him. He will offer you the fruit of the Tree of Life, so to speak. But Satan will offer you a ‘different fruit’. He will tempt you by saying: ‘God’s not really good. Let me show you another ‘good’ way.’ Maybe he will suggest something like, ‘God says trust Him for revenge, but here’s a different fruit: ‘Get your own revenge.’ Or, ‘God may say it’s good to offer forgiveness, but here’s another fruit, ‘Hold a grudge’.
Sinful thoughts may cross our mind. Selfish feelings may begin to invade our heart. The promptings of the Holy Spirit will warn us that God is not pleased with the direction our thoughts and feelings are taking us. At that very moment of conviction, we must reject the sin that crouches at the door of our life before it brings its inevitable and disastrous consequences.
Our archenemy only offers us ‘bitter fruit’; this fruit will lead us to corruption and death. Sin destroys; sin brings death. Sin is not something to toy with or take lightly. God’s ways will lead us to sweet, refreshing fruit that will bring to us goodness and life.
Satan, who is the father of deception and lies, does not go about his work haphazardly; he has a plan. His attacks are specific, his attacks are direct, and his attacks are relentless. They are always perfectly timed and tailor-made for us. The battle between righteousness and unrighteousness is often a battle between what we know and what we feel. By carefully guarding our emotions, we can ensure that they do not control our will and thus move us in the direction of unrighteousness.
The enemy is constantly telling us lies. He lies about God’s faithfulness, he lies about His love, and he lies about His concern for us. He is still offering God’s children ‘bitter fruit’ after all these years by appearing as an angel of light—attractive, reasonable, and enticing. He is still seeking to set God’s children adrift in a sea of doubt, reaping the results of choosing ‘bitter fruit’.
Choose to believe the Word and the warnings of the Holy Spirit instead of the siren call of the deceiver, Satan.