I have often wondered this past year if we in the Southern Baptist Convention have forgotten who our real enemy is. With the tendency to divide into "us" versus "them," and the way we focus our energy on pointing out the sin in others, I wonder whether our real enemy has been ignored as he attacks us.
Richard Gilpin, M.D. (1625 - 1700) was a non-conformist physician and theologian who wrote a classic work entitled "Daemonolgia Sacra or A Treatise of Satan's Temptations." In introducing his treatise Dr. Gilpin writes (emphasis mine),
"Among those things that religion offers to our study, God and our own hearts are the chief. God is the first and last and whole of our happiness; the beginning, progress, and completement of it is from him and in him --- for in that centre do all the lines meet; but our heart is the stage upon which this felicity, as to the application of it, is transacted: upon this little spot of earth doth God and Satan draw up their several armies; here doth each of them shew their power and wisdom; this is treated by both; each of them challenge an interest in it; it is attacked on the one side adn defended on the other. So that here are skirmishes, battles, and strategems managed. That man, then, that will not concern himself in his inquiries, how the matter goes in his own heart, what ground is got or lost, what forts are taken or defended, what mines are sprung, what ambusheses laid, or how the battle proceeds, must needs lie under a just imputation of the greatest folly; neither can he be excused in his neglect by the most pressing solicitations of other things that seem to require his attendance upon the highest imaginable pretences of necessity: 'For what is he profited , that gains the whole world, but loses his soul?'"(Mark 8:36).
In light of Dr. Gilpin's insight, I would like to ask a question for your thoughts and written reflections:
What tactic does Satan use most successfully in causing you to lose your focus, and as a result, your inner sense of contentment that comes from Christ?
I am not looking particularly for scholarly answers, but personal, even painful testimonies of the devices used by our common enemy.
In His Grace,