Some thoughts from Genesis 3:1-7.
He Plays on Our Ignorance
The serpent said to the woman, “Did God actually say…?” If we lack a grasp of what God did and does say in his word, then we are vulnerable to this destabilising question. We may think we know, but when tested and faced with a choice which involves choosing to follow God’s word or not, that little voice comes in, “Did God actually say…?” If we are unable to say “yes” unequivocally, then we are stuffed.
He Flat Contradicts God
The woman heard the serpent say, “You will surely not die!” We hear voices like this all the time. The Bible says one thing, but our culture says another. Who are we going to listen to? If we do not have a grip on truth, we doubt, and then we are vulnerable.
He Suggests That God Is Not Good
Satan tries to make God look bad. He suggests that God has ulterior motives which are not for our good. The serpent hints at this to the woman. We need to know and believe that God is good in all circumstances and that there is a bigger picture that we cannot see. (Romans 8:28)
He Suggests That God is Holding Something Back that We Think We Ought to Have
The serpent says that the woman will be like God if she eats. He suggests there is something more within her grasp that she could want, if only…
Isn’t that how it works with us? Even though we may blessed in so many ways, yet we become open to suggestions from the Tempter. We become dissatisfied and harbour secret resentments against God. Then we are stuffed.
He Offers Keys to Blessing That Leave God Out
The apple represents a route to greatness. How ridiculous! How can a created apple give what she wants? It makes no sense.
In the same way, how can those other things – status, power, wealth, property, pleasure – fulfil what they seem to promise? The fact is they can’t. Jesus was tempted in this way in the desert (e.g Luke 4:7,8). He was offered power. The catch was he had to bow down to Satan, and forever become a slave to him. (Impossible for the Son of God, yet still requiring the exercise of supreme self-control.)
No, there is no greater place to be than to humbly walk with your God, even if it leads along a path with many troubles. Like Jesus.