I recently came across a passage in My Utmost for His Highest, by Oswald Chambers. It said:
Satan does not tempt us just to make us do wrong things–he tempts us to make us lose what God has put into us through regeneration, namely, the possibility of being of value to God.
The Bible speaks about this regeneration often. Jesus said “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3) Paul wrote to the Corinthians “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” (2 Corinthians 5:17) And in Romans 6:4: “We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”
So what did God put into us when we chose to accept Jesus as Lord? Well, we became sons of God, heirs with Christ, and adopted into the family. We get to cry out “Abba” or “daddy” to the creator of the universe. We are brothers of God’s Son, Jesus, and our identity is in Him. What he has, he gives to us. He is given all by his Father–we are given all. He suffered the temptations and trials of this broken world–so will we. He was raised into eternal life–so are we. What we may lose now have no comparison to what God has given us in Jesus.
As we turn more towards this new life the Father has to, the temptations of Satan change. Where once he might have tempted us with things that would prevent us from becoming a part of God’s family, now he will seek to render us unable to serve Him. Oswald Chambers said it better: “He does not come to us on the premise of tempting us to sin, but on the premise of shifting our point of view, and only the Spirit of God can detect this as a temptation of the devil.” He seeks to rob us of the ability to serve, to render useless the new life in Christ that is ours when we choose to follow Jesus. It is only by continually seeking God both through his word and in prayer that we can learn to hear the Spirit when it seeks to turn us from this trap of Satan, and keep steady in our walk with Jesus.
Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8)