Bible Text: Jn. 14:30 | SUNDAY LIGHT (06/10/19)
Watchman Catholic Charismatic Renewal Movement
Topic: SATAN’S PROPERTIES RETAINED BY MANY IN THE CHURCH (Part 3b)
Text: Jn. 14:30
As we continue in this all-important series, it is expected that all participants of the fellowship will take time to examine themselves and ensure that no property of the evil one is retained, seeing that only the untaught and or uncleansed are judged by the Lord in the interim and in eternity (cons. 1Cor.11:31, Jn.12:47,48).
So far, we have looked at some Satanic traits that ruin people and congregations viz Unteachable Disposition, Stubbornness, Self-will and lastly disposition of ungodly motives.
Today, we shall be considering CRAFTINESS which is a trait aligned with the manifestation of unhealthy or ungodly motive.
Craftiness is the attitude of being cunning, shrewd, sly, subtle or surreptitious (secret, sneaking, underhand, clandestine). The crafty is ingenious in deception, giving a false impression of his real intent.
Craftiness was the first stealth weapon employed by Satan against mankind, which indeed was devastating (cons. Gen.3:1-7, 22-24). After the fall, some men did deploy it to attain some temporary goal, but not without consequence (Gen.27:16-23, Jos.9:4-15, Matt.26:4,47-50, Lk.20:19-23).
Craftiness sometimes manifests as dissimulation ie hiding under a false appearance (cons. Lk.20:20-23, Acts 23:12-16), deceptive speech or actions (cons. Ps.36:3, Prov.12:5, 27:6, Lk.22:47-48), dishonesty in business (cons. Deut.25:13, Prov.11:1; Mic.6:11; Prov. 21:6).
In the Church, the possessors of this ungodly trait with or without any condemnation of their conscience, get involved in inglorious activities like ostentatiously using gifts to bribe/pave their ways into the hearts of people with the intent of securing some position, unmerited favour, or life partner (as detailed last week)(cp. Matt.6:3).
In this era of multiplicity of Churches, the crafty could speak caringly with the mind of discrediting the leadership and drawing proselytes to himself (cp. 2Sam. 15:1-6). The crafty could show concern to a desperate or needy with the mind of reaping off the unsuspecting (cons. Matt.23:14). He could put words into sincere/innocent people’s mouth to black mail them (cons. Matt.22:15-18, Prov.26:24).
They could cover their sins by blowing aloud other people’s wrong, thereby diverting attention from themselves (cp. Prov.20:6). They may paradoxically use lies to cover themselves while making restitution of sins committed (cons. Prov.21:27; 28:13).
Now, experiences of the crafty – characters that we enumerated have some lesson to dispense to the wise (Prov.1:5). Judgement was pronounced against Satan and the serpent which served as the vehicle of deception at the garden of Eden (Gen.3:1,14-15). The recompense of deceit experienced by Jacob in life stands as a strong warning to deceivers/crafty people (cons. Gen.29:20-25, 31:4-7, 32:6-9, 37:31-34; Prov.20:25,17; Gal.6:7).
Is there no lesson from the shame suffered by the crafty emissaries of the chief priests and from the fate of crafty Judas? (Cons. Lk.20:19-26; Matt.27:3-5). The crafty suffers in the now and in eternity (Isa. 48:22, Rev.21:7). Who then can afford to retain this diabolical trait?
The child of God is expected to be sincere, honest and child-likely simple in heart (Tit.2:7, Phil.1:9-10; 1Cor.14:20, Lk.18:17).