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How Satan influences Christian Behavior
Christian Behavior – Is it the Devil or Is it Me?
Personal accountability is often disguised as “The Devil made me do it” in many Christian Religions today. Whatever happened to free choice and taking responsibility for your actions?
I read a post in the Religion and Beliefs forum on HubPages recently that went like this, and I quote:
“It is my contention that the Christian religion (and specifically following Christ) is guaranteed to cause conflict, wars, and ill will.
As proof – I cite the last 1800 years – including the HubPages forums as evidence.”
Etc. Etc. Etc.
Apparently the creator of this post feels that the Christian Religion causes conflict, wars, and ill will. To which I say, “What’s your point?” “Are you blaming the Christian religion for ALL wars and ill will?”
This person then ends the post with: “Which makes this a violent, aggressive, confrontational belief system - not loving.” To which I would have to say “I respectfully disagree.” Christianity as a whole, in my opinion, although I have no statistical evidence to back it, does more good to society than evil.
While Christians, or Christianity as a religion, is not perfect, it does provide a wealth of services to people around the globe that far exceeds any negative influence it may have. I will admit there are some members of the Christian religion that portray a bad image of Christianity, and it has had some low points in its history, but overall its influence has been good to humanity.
Is it the devil or is it me?
The devil made me do it! True or False?
This seems to me, to be a classic example of failure to recognize the principle of individual responsibility for your actions.
It is easy to blame the Christian religion as a whole with no regard for personal accountability. It’s just as easy to blame all Germans for killing Jews, and all white Caucasians for being prejudice against African – Americans.
I am not so naïve to deny that there has not been conflict, wars, and ill will created as the result of individuals in the name of Christ. However, throughout history, there has always been a thread of integrity that has enabled the truth of Christianity to rise to the top even though individual behavior has been to the contrary.
It is not Christianity or the belief in Jesus Christ as your personal savior that causes the violence, but rather the actions of each individual.
Are Non-Believers excluded from Heaven by God?
The National Rifle Association has a slogan that says: “Guns don’t kill, people do.”
Just as the anti-gun advocates want to remove all guns from the public sector, the anti-religion movement wants to eradicate religion, Christianity included. One argument I have heard as a basis for this opinion is the belief that Christians have a “key” to eternal life that non-believers are excluded from. They believe, or at least this is the way that I have interpreted it, is that this exclusion of non-believers is a catalyst for violence. Their argument is based on the history of religious wars and violence in the name of God.
Some of them actually feel that this is a form of prejudice, and that because they don’t believe in God, or a god, that they are being excluded from entry into Heaven. They are also going so far as to say that because they don’t conform to some of the Christian values that they are being shunned from receiving salvation.
They are blinded by the fact that, what they are asking is not something we can give. It is by belief in God, and Jesus Christ as our savior, that the gift of eternal life is received. It is given by God and God alone. Fail to believe, fail to receive.
Who’s to blame?
It was actually suggested that a plan could be devised that could replace all religions that would bring peace and harmony to the planet if we removed God or any reference to a higher power from the dialogue.
Again, a gross failure to recognize it is not the “plan” that has malfunctioned it is the operators.
It started in the Garden of Eden in Gen. 3: 12-13 when Adam blamed his actions on Eve and Eve blamed her actions on the Serpent.
And thus we have one of the strongest principles in the nature of sin: Failure to accept responsibility for our actions.
These two were the epitome of perfection in Gods creation of humans. They actually walked and talked with God face to face, and yet the power of Satan was able to persuade them to, momentarily forget everything God had done for them, and disobey his commands. To make matters worse, rather than repenting and asking for forgiveness, they point their finger at someone else and deny their own fault.
Does this make Satan responsible for your sin? Absolutely not!
Does he bring temptation? Yes!
Does he try to persuade our thinking? Yes!
Does He cause us to act inappropriately? No, not directly.
Personal accountability. We do it all on our own.
Are we influenced by Satan? Yes, if we succomb to temptation.
Does He make us do it? NO! God gave mankind free choice and it still reigns supreme today.
“We chose how we will live: Courageously, with purpose or in drift. We decide what is important and what is trivial in life. We decide that what makes us significant is either what we do or refuse to do: we decide. We choose. As we decide and as we choose, so our lives are formed.” Author Unknown
The Plan of Salvation
If Adam and Eve can’t overcome this sin, with their superior intellect and close personal relationship with God, how can we?
In Gods infinite wisdom, from the very beginning he instituted a plan.
That plan is Jesus Christ. It is through his perfect walk on this planet that Christ conquered death. And just by as one man everyone is susceptible to death; by one man everyone can have eternal life.
If you are of the mind set of the individual who created the forum post as mentioned above, and you do not recognize the existence of God and do not believe in Jesus’ death as redemption for your sin, then you exclude yourself. There is no prejudice. You have made a choice. Fail to believe, fail to receive.
Choose to believe, choose to receive.
Anyone can choose to believe if they want to. No special skill or talent required. You can point your finger in any direction and blame everyone around you, but ultimately you are accountable.
You are accountable for your actions, and you are accountable for what you believe. Believe Jesus was capable and worthy of redemption for your sins and you can receive the gift. Choose to believe, choose to receive.