Thoughts come into my head all the time while I am reading parts of the Bible. At times they try to make me think that certain passages are false. They blaspheme God. I am wondering is this the work of demons or actually my own thoughts? I believe to have a great relationship with God but this is causing me much doubt now.
The purpose of this article is answer a very common question, “Can Satan put thoughts in our minds?” We know that Satan wants us to doubt God. He wants non-Christians to reject God and to reject what God has said in the Bible. Satan also wants Christians, those who believe and trust Him, to not trust Him and to doubt what He has said in the Bible.
Satan Manipulates the World’s “Wisdom”
A perfect example of Satan putting a thought into someone’s mind is found in Genesis 3. In Genesis 3:1, we are told that Satan approached Eve and then quoted God saying she could eat of any of the trees in the garden.
Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” Genesis 3:1 (NASB)
Satan implied that God had lied to Adam and Eve. In Genesis 2:16 it is recorded that God told Adam the following,
The LORD God commanded the man, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.” Genesis 2:16-17 (NASB)
So, Eve knew the truth and corrected Satan’s false statement. Here is her response.
The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.'” Genesis 3:2-3 (NASB)
But Satan was determined to cause trouble and so he contradicts what God had said. In essence He calls God a liar. Here is Satan’s response to Eve.
The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:4-5 (NASB)
In Satan’s encounter with Eve, he never called God a liar. Yet, he implied that God was a liar – that God did not tell the truth. He is devious and cunning. He is sophisticated and clever. Today, Satan uses philosophy, science, archaeology, and various other disciplines or sources to cause people to doubt God. He uses what appears to be objective truth to call God a liar. Can Satan put thoughts in our minds? Yes!
Can Satan Put Thoughts In Our Minds?
In the Garden of Eden, Satan spoke directly to Eve. Now consider what happened to the apostle Peter when he told Jesus that He would never die. Matthew 16:21-23 records Jesus’ reply.
From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day. Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.” But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interests, but man’s.” Matthew 16:21-23 (NASB)
How did Jesus reply to Peter? Jesus spoke directly to Peter and rebuked Satan. That is, Satan put the thought into Peter’s mind that Jesus should not die on the cross. Jesus knew this happened. So, He directly rebuked Satan and not Peter.
Another example is found in Jesus’ parable of the “Sower and the Seed.” Jesus tells us that Satan snatches away the Word of God after a person has heard it. Here is the first part of the parable.
When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is the one on whom seed was sown beside the road. Matthew 13:19 (NASB)
This implies that Satan can put doubts into our minds that would cause a person to reject what they read or heard.
A third example is found in Acts 5:1-3. In this example, we are told a husband and a wife claimed that they had given all the money from the sale of some land to the church. Now notice what Satan did.
But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, and kept back some of the price for himself, with his wife’s full knowledge, and bringing a portion of it, he laid it at the apostles’ feet. But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? Acts 5:1-3 (NASB)
Now who filled Ananias’ heart so that he lied? The answer is Satan. In this verse, “heart” is another term for “mind.” So, Satan put a thought in his mind to lie, and he did. These three examples demonstrate that Satan can put thoughts in our minds.
We have discovered that Satan had put thoughts into Peter’s mind. This means that the answer to the question, “Can Satan put thoughts in our minds?” is “Yes!” Satan can put thoughts into our minds and we should not be surprised if the thoughts are anti-God and cause us to doubt Him and what He said in the Bible – the Word of God.
So, how do we protect ourselves? Be sure to spend time each day reading the Word of God and spend time praying to God. It is the Word of God which the Holy Spirit uses to renew our minds. Believers should ask God for protection as they read and study the Bible. Remember that God put a “hedge of protection” around the ancient patriarch Job (Job 1:9-10). The hedge protected Job from Satan. Therefore, we should ask God to put a hedge around us to protect us from Satan and oneself. Also, put on the whole Armor of God. See part 1 of Ephesians 6:13-18.
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