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The Real Thief-Knowing The Difference

The Real Thief
Knowing The Difference

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. John 10:10 (NKJV)

In a previous devotional titled, "The Thief In The Night," we looked at how Jesus will one day come back for His bride - The Church - all those who profess Him as Lord and Savior.  And in doing so, there will be many who will be caught off-guard like a thief breaking into their homes in the middle of the night.  Unfortunately, it will be too late, and they will be "Left behind."

In Today's devotional I would like to look at the real "Thief," and that is Satan the father of lies.  John 10:10 teaches us that Satan has come to steal, and to kill, and to destroy our lives.  It is through the power of his lie, that many will fall and never know real life.  

The many ways that Satan works are too numerous to mention within this devotional, but needless to say, they are almost immeasurable, and equally devastating.  Invariably, each of these temptations we fall prey to will be wrapped tightly in deception.  Getting us to believe that what Satan is offering is actually good, or even needed for us to have a fulfilled and happy life is often the pretense that his bait is consumed.  And if we don't align that, which is being dangled before our face, with the truth of God's Word to see it for what it really is - we will eventually firmly bite down upon his stink bait covered lie.

A little over a year ago I had presided over a funeral of an older lady who had passed away from cancer.  I had just met her about 5-days before she died, and I had led her to the Lord by sharing the Gospel message with her.  It had taken an entire life for her to come to the end of her sin of pride, and her independence from God.  The firm grasp of Satan's lies had nearly drugged her to an eternity of gnashing teeth and unquenchable flames, where worms never die.  Isaiah gives us a glimpse of what it will be like for those who refuse Gods free gift of salvation.

"And they shall go forth and look Upon the corpses of the men Who have transgressed against Me.  For their worm does not die, And their fire is not quenched.  They shall be an abhorrence to all flesh." Isaiah 66:24 (NKJV)

I stood there at the funeral services and gave a message of salvation, as each piece of the Gospel message was carefully spoken forth.  I had made a personal invitation to everyone who was in attendance and when it was over, 15-people raised their hands and asked Jesus into their hearts to be their personal Lord and Savior.  For them the lie was broken and exposed for what it really was.  

And yet there were some who attended who couldn't make that commitment within their hearts, and their lips could not confess Jesus to be Lord and Savior.  

That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. Romans 10:9-10 (NKJV)

I am sure too many of these people, they figured there was plenty of time to make that decision as life was still plentiful and it lay ahead.  Maybe they couldn't relate to this lady or the cancer.  Maybe they wanted to experience more of what this world had to offer - thinking that it would satisfy them; and so the enemy had kept them in bondage for yet another day.

Last week I received a call from a friend of this family, and I was asked to go to the hospital and to pray for the son-in-law of that lady who had died last year. He was now laying there in critical condition with little hope of surviving.  He was one of the people at the funeral, and unfortunately, he was one of the unsaved people who didn't raise his hand.  

I had learned that He had taken an overdose of pain medication in an attempt to bring to an end the anguish that he was dealing with.  The enemy had lied to him and led him to believe that this was the best way, or perhaps the only way to deal with it.  Not finding any hope in what this world had to offer, he succumbed to that temptation.

As I write this devotional, just thinking about this sickens me, and I am angered.  This was needless and destructive both to this man and his entire family.  

I am not trying to depress anyone, but only warn and advise every reader that we are fighting in a spiritual war against Satan and his fallen angels, and the enemy is always on the prowl, and we need to be aware and keep watch.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. 1Peter 5:8 (NKJV)

I want to encourage you Christian to be vigilant because the enemy is tearing apart families each and every day; he is lying to us and deceiving us to think that what he has to offer is somehow better than what we have been offered by God.  Dont buy it - he's a liar!

We can't live as if we have forever to decide whether or not we will have a relationship with God, because we don't.  We don't know if today is our last day.  What if it was and you knew it - how would you live today?  I want to encourage you today to ask this question to others as well.

STUDY QUESTION:  What can we learn about Salvation, judgment, and the enemy by the scriptures contained within this devotional?

PERSONAL INVENTORY:  Is there someone that God is prompting you to share the Gospel message with today?

APPLICATION: Don't wait to do this, thinking that you have plenty of time to ask - make time today to share the message of Jesus Christ to that person who God has laid upon your heart.  Ask them if they want to receive Jesus into their heart as their personal Lord and Savior.  Don't worry about the prayer, because God judges only the heart.

Father, Thank You for Your truth that is contained within Your Word.  Help me today to share this message of salvation.  Lead me to speak to those You have brought into my life.  In Jesus  precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000