"There Is No Destiny"
From Satan's Ten Most Believable Lies
Now Eve, lets face it. You are so small and God is so big that theres no way you will ever be anything more than a pathetic little pygmy in His sight. He obviously made you in this limited fashion because He wants some little automatons who will always do His bidding. You and Adam will never be more than Gods little slaves.
Its time to strike out on your own, Eve, the name of the game is autonomy.
Eve, God knows that if you eat of this fruit, you will be like a god. That is why He told you not to eat it. I promise you, Eve, that God never will bring you anywhere near His level, and so you had better take matters into your own hands. Assert yourself! Take a bit of this fruit.
Not only will you not die, but you will be like a god. You will know what its all about by your own experience and knowledge! It will put you on a level with Him. Take some, and give some to Adam to eat, and you are on the road to destiny. We can make a plan for your life, Eve, that will make Gods little diagram look like peanuts.
So it was that the serpent revealed the third satanic doctrine: there is no destiny. For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil (Genesis 3:5). With this statement, Satan comes to the daring conclusion of his conversation with Eve. He has already pressed upon Eve the lie that God is a tyrant and His word is not to be trusted. He now suggests that God make man to be His slave forever. Establishing this, Satan can suggest that Eve take matters into her own hands. He convinces her that she must take a shortcut to personal realization.
The question of divine destiny is an important one for Satan. He has made it a point of his doctrine to deny this. Is there a mighty purpose for which we were created? What really was the purpose for which God made man in His image?
We are told in the Bible that God created man in order to make him ultimately higher than the angels and put the world to come in subjection under him (Hebrews 2:8). God has an eternal plan for each of our lives, and He works to bring that exciting plan to fulfillment. We are indeed people of destiny! The Bible is filled with promises of a most glorious eternity, a fabulous future that God has provided for man. The imagination of every human mind should be quickened by these promises of God:
The Bible teaches a most exalted purpose for which God created man. This purpose is to become like God Himself, to partake in His uncreated and eternal life, and to share with Him the rulership of the universe.
Sin entered the world because Satan was able to cause Eve to forget temporarily the doctrine of divine destiny. She temporarily believed the antitruth that God had no purpose for her life. Satans argument was astonishingly successful with Eve. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat (Genesis 3:6). With this decision, Eve traded the bright promise of eternal life for the instant but temporary fulfillment of the lust of the flesh. The proximity of the things that she could see and feel became larger in that moment than the abstractions of a yet unrealized future.
Having succeeded, in such fine fashion with Eve, Satan, we may be sure, will continue to push his argument that divine destiny is a nonexistent abstraction, while reality is the immediate circle of fulfillment available in this present moment.
What is the true comparative value between this life and the life to come? The Christian understands this value differential. Paul explains it well: For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal (2 Corinthians 4:17-18). This affirmation stands in sure contrast to satanic doctrine and to the spirit of our present age.
In our time, the here and now is invariably presented as infinitely more important than the yet to come. One is thought a fool to deny himself the immediate fulfillments of this present moment in favor of some better but future realization. To do a thing for moral reasons rather than for immediate gratification is thought laughable by the present conventional wisdom. Do it now! Live now! is the rallying cry of this day and hour. The gospel that presents a hope for eternity sounds like a pleasant but impractical abstraction to the deaf ears of our now-oriented generation.
This spirit of now as against then has had influence, even in the ranks of the church. Recently, I was in a meeting where the congregation sang,
Theres a land that is fairer than day,
It occurred to me, as we sang this blessed old Christian hymn, that it had been a long time since I had even heard it sung. I realized then that much of our music, teaching and preaching has to do with the relevance of Christianity to this present moment. We hear a lot about involvement in society, keeping up with our changing times, being sensitive to political, racial, and social problems, and a host of other contemporary themes.
The social gospel was hardly the emphasis of the writers of the New Testament. Paul sums up all of the affairs, joys, delights, and involvements of this lifetime with a few short words: For our light affliction, which is but for a moment. The teaching of the New Testament is that we have a short sojourn through this world. In it, we are to understand Christian doctrine, communicate it to others in the brief time that we have, and then step into the presence of our heavenly Father. The New Testament scarcely mentions relevance and social involvement as it is currently being emphasized in Christian writing and preaching.
In the first chapter of Romans, God announces three times that He has given this world up! He has turned it over to uncleanness, to vile affections, and to a reprobate mind. The epistles following Romans present a hither to unmentioned messagethat the church is a body of Christ and is already seated in the heavenlies with Him. The New Testament speaks little of permanent human associations or cultural involvement and social relevance, but talks of being pilgrims and strangers in a condemned and unsavable society. It concedes incidentally that we should do good unto all men, but gives more importance to our helping others of the household of faith (Galatians 6:10). The emphasis is upon preparing for eternal life rather than those activities that are for this life alone.
What has happened to this message of eternal destiny? How often have we reminded ourselves that if in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable (1 Corinthians 15:19)? The grand themes of the New Testament are our future resurrection, the second coming of Christ, the judgment of God upon this world, and the necessity of snatching souls from this worlds entrapments like brands from the burning. Eve rejected the message of eternal destiny in exchange for present knowledge, satisfaction, and fulfillment. Is it possible that even organized Christianity is moving now to this direction?
We now hear of a new view in the church, which might be called presentism. It states that Christians have a mandate to dominate, rule, and master this present world. The Bible calls it this present evil world, Galatians 1:4. Beware of this pathway declaring that the church is given human dominion in this day of grace. The followers of such a view claim that the kingdom is now! Is it?
But the most important application of this satanic doctrine is to our personal lives. Each person who believes more in the fulfillments of the present than in the eternal purpose of God in his life has been subverted by this third satanic doctrine.
Another implication of the devils third doctrine that can become a valuable lesson to each of us is the suggestion that experience is always the best teacher. The expression knowing good and evil refers to knowing by experience. He is saying to Eve that she will know by experience good and evil; she will become as God.
Nothing is further from the truth than to suggest that experience is the best teacher in things with moral implications. The person who is steeped in sin knows little about either sin or righteousness. It is the person who stands against the current who knows the strength of a river rather than the one who drifts downstream with the water. The person who is asleep comprehends neither sleep nor wakefulness.
Nevertheless, Satan is able to subvert relatively moral people on the basis of the argument. Do it; only then will you understand it. Many a moral rationalist has fallen into the addiction of sin under the argument that by doing it, he will be better able to understand and help those in the same mess. He believed the satanic suggestion that experience is the best teacher.
Actually, experience in sin so dulls the senses as to make understanding of anything impossible. The indulgence in any vice from gluttony to illicit sex soon produces a deadness of feeling and comprehension so that even the indulgence itself becomes boring. So it is that all of our lusts, after their initial fulfillment, progressively starve us. Experience in immorality teaches us nothing. It merely increases a debt that we are made progressively more incapable of paying with each repeated experience. The advice Dont knock it till youve tried it is a lie that originated with Satan.
A further implication that can also add to our moral understanding is that there is a valid shortcut to fulfillment, to destiny. The implied promise of eating the forbidden fruit was that Eve would become instantly wise, mature, Godlike, and self-realized. There are few greater lies that Satan is able to pass into naive hearts than the lie that there is a shortcut to maturity or destiny.
Sadly, that lie is being preached today. Millions of promoters, from their own soapboxes, are saying, Here is the simple, fulfilling answer. Do this one thing and you will have it all. Many people believe that alcohol, drugs, sex, and money are the keys to self-realization.
And those promising easy answers are not always outside of the religious establishment. Within the church, there is often the suggestion that some experience, some thrilling phenomenon, will produce instant maturity and a total relationship with God. One often hears the implied promise that one great ecstasy or one instant spiritual formula will produce a miraculous, divine enlightenment that is available in no other way. Unsuspecting Christians are following these implied promises as never before.
The truth, is, there is no shortcut to knowledge, maturity, or destiny. All of these spiritual panaceas are in succession to the satanic doctrine that in effect says, Do this one thing and you will have it all. The Bible gives us an entirely different picture. When we receive Jesus Christ as our Savior, we are blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ. But the road from innocence to maturity is long and difficult. Daily we are to be involved in the program of perfecting holiness in the fear of God (2 Corinthians 7:1). The process of maturing that prepares us for our eternal and heavenly responsibilities involves suffering, rejection, persecution, complex moral decisions, study, prayer, tireless labor, successes, failures, and the chastening of God. No message is more cruel to preach to the new Christian than the idea that there is an instant, giant step to maturity that comes through some unique involvement or experience.
Even evangelical Christianity is infected with the notion that there is a special, sinless life that comes as a result of a mysterious, spiritual step that produces an immense, one-time gain in our lives. The Christian faith itself is not unaffected by the influence of sub-Christian doctrines, and we are living in an age in which this effect continues to grow. The doctrine of instant maturity is one of them.
Paul believed no such delusion. Speaking of his own situation, he says, Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect [mature]: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:12). Christian sanctification comes to us in a positional sense instantly and totally when we receive Christ. Progressive sanctification is a daily and laborious task and will not and cannot be fulfilled so long as we live in a sinful world.
That is indeed the way God has ordained it. Earth is like a university, and our course of study will never be complete so long as we live on this campus. The moment a person believes that he has achieved an exalted plane in life, at that moment, the evil one has successfully cut off the educational process that alone can perfect real holiness in life. How many millions of Christians have been fixed in a state of tragic immaturity because they have believed a doctrine of instant perfection that has no basis in Scripture? Spiritual infants populate our churches and become problems because they have not continued to grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Finally, the doctrine that the pursuit of God is a pointless errand has been the great inhibition to Christian evangelism. Of those who neglect or refuse to receive Christ as their Savior, the largest portion do so because they believe that the way to fulfillment is along another road. They pursue business achievements, personal pleasure, prestige, or other forms of human accomplishment as the path to success as they perceive it. Each individual who is not a Christian believes that there is a more valuable course to follow in life than the spiritual one.
Millions in their spiritual blindness believe the satanic doctrine that there is another path to destiny beside receiving Christ as Savior and growing in the Christian life. Satan makes the world appear to present great promise, but once again, this is a promise that cannot be fulfilled. He promises, but he does not perform.
Despite this lack of performance, people continue to believe that the path to destiny is in some other direction beside God. Deciding against the will of God for their lives, they move into wasted years and a lost eternity.
They discover too late that the only purpose worth pursing was the exciting plan that God has for their life. To believe any other point of view is to be subverted by a satanic doctrine.
Satan's Ten Most Believable Lies