Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE - bil­ly­gra­ham.org BILLY GRA­HAM

DEAR REV. GRA­HAM: What is the devil’s most suc­cess­ful trick? In other words, out of all the schemes he uses to try to lead us astray, which one works best? I’d like to know so I can be on guard.

— Z.J. DEAR Z.J: I’m thank­ful you want to be on guard against the devil’s schemes, be­cause the devil is real, and he will do ev­ery­thing he can to de­ceive us and turn us away from God. The Bi­ble urges us to be alert to the devil’s schemes, “in or­der that Sa­tan might not out­wit us” (2 Corinthi­ans 2:11).

The devil has many tricks up his sleeve (so to speak) but surely one of his most suc­cess­ful is to make us be­lieve he doesn’t ex­ist. We may ad­mit that evil is real, but then deny that be­hind it are de­monic spir­i­tual forces bent on our de­struc­tion and death. Or we may deny the devil’s true na­ture by turn­ing him into a harm­less car­toon char­ac­ter with a red suit and pitch­fork. But Je­sus said, “He was a mur­derer from the be­gin­ning, not hold­ing to the truth, for there is no truth in him” (John 8:44).

Some­one has said that the devil doesn’t need to think up any new tricks be­cause the old ones still work. It’s true. Lust, pride, power, dis­cour­age­ment, doubt, money, es­capism, plea­sure, hate, anger, jeal­ousy, self­ish­ness — the ways he at­tacks us are al­most end­less. If one temp­ta­tion doesn’t work, he’ll try an­other and he’ll keep on try­ing.

The most im­por­tant fact about Sa­tan is that he is a de­feated foe. By His death and res­ur­rec­tion, Je­sus Christ con­quered death and hell and Sa­tan, and some­day His vic­tory will be com­plete. In the mean­time, make sure of your com­mit­ment to Christ, and turn to Him ev­ery day for the strength you need.

Write to Billy Gra­ham in care of Billy Gra­ham Evan­ge­lis­tic As­so­ci­a­tion, 1 Billy Gra­ham Park­way, Char­lotte, N.C. 28201 or visit the web­site at

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