Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Confident (07/05/07)
By Doug Laird
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Satan, being fully aware of this, will do all he can to put as many con-fi-â€śdentsâ€ť into our spiritual armor of confidence that he can, in order to impede our progress and performance in the post-salvation spiritual life.
The antithesis of confidence is fear. The antidote for the fear is truth (John 8: 32). Without having and applying truth (Matt.7: 24), we will inevitably succumb to the confi-â€śdentsâ€ť that the satanic attacks will inflict on our armor of confidence and we will begin to sink (Matt.14: 30).
These dents are not necessarily the result of a major event, but can be the accumulated effect of the little pings and dings we get every day from all kinds of negativity that come from the devilâ€™s world to discourage us.
Scripture teach that, â€śâ€¦apart from me, you can do nothing (John 15: 5 NIV).â€ť To set the stage for failure, Satan true to form, through human viewpoint, will offer an alternative means for â€śsuccessâ€ť.
Human viewpoint will have us adopt a pseudo-confidence that appeals to the pride of our fallen nature.
Satan promotes â€śselfâ€ť-confidence.
Self-confidence is based on what â€śIâ€ť can do, as opposed to God can do through me. â€śSelfâ€ť is empowered and encouraged by the fallen nature within us.
Instead of producing â€śdivineâ€ť good under the filling of God the Holy Spirit, the believer functioning with his fallen nature can only produce human good via human power, talents, and abilities.
Overly, divine and human good can appear to be one in the same, but as 1Cor. 3: 12-15 teach, God approves of one and rejects the other. It is not the deed, but the enabling power behind it that determines its value in the eyes of God.
As the individual produces more and more human good, he/she becomes more and self-confident in what he/she is accomplishing, while drifting further and further away from what only God can accomplish through him/her if the believer was Spirit filled.
Human good has value in this life, but has NOTHING to do with the executing the true post-salvation spiritual life under the filling of God the Holy Spirit (John 15: 5).
Satan will encourage and bless deeds of self-confidence (Luke 4: 6). God in His timing, will smash oneâ€™s self-confidence by bringing in circumstances to humble us (Matt.14: 30/Matt.26: 33, 34).
He may take away all that â€śweâ€ť have accomplished, or at the very least, expose them for what they really are. If He does not take away our ability to accomplish more in our â€śselfâ€ť life, He will take away the desire to do so.
Then, if we are willing to be remolded for His purposes, he will bring us to the point that we will learn total dependence on Him and to reject all that we thought we could do in our self-confidence.
Oneâ€™s greatest periods of spiritual growth are usually preceded by what the world would call great adversity, personal disaster and tragedy. It is not until we are willing to reject all that â€śweâ€ť thought â€śweâ€ť had accomplished that that He can slide over and get behind the wheel.
Whenever we feel that we have regained our â€śself-confidence again and feel we are ready to resume the helm, He will allows us to do so, knowing that we will soon hit another rut in the road and crash. Through acquired wisdom or experience, we will learn to remain in the back seat and just go for the ride and leave the driving to Him.
Human viewpoint places great worth in self- confidence, but â€śâ€¦What is highly valued among men is detestable in Godâ€™s sight (Luke 16:15 NIV).â€ť
Self-confidence may have its place in the natural realm, but it is the rejection of self and reliance on God and the things of God that matters in the spiritual realm.
In closing, consider that â€śselfâ€ť-confidence in the spiritual realm can be the source of great deception. â€śYou say, â€śI am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.â€ť But, you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked (Rev. 3: 17 NIV).â€ť
We ARE to be confident, but our confidence comes from learning and applying the TRUTH about what HE has done to provide the means of salvation and what HE will do through us in the post salvation spiritual life.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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