Is the Devil Responsible for Our Sins?

Satan desires one thing, which is the spiritual demise of all humanity. He wants every soul to end up in hell with him (Mat. 25:41). Satan accomplishes his mission by getting people to live their lives in sin. Satan “entered in” Judas and caused him to betray the Lord (Jn. 13:27; 18:1-5). Satan “filled’ Ananias’ heart to lie to the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3). Satan “deceived” Eve to disobey the Lord (1 Tim. 2:14; Gen. 3:1-6). Jesus told Peter that “Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not” (Lk. 22:31-32). The devil is always busy trying to “devour” people with sin (1 Pet. 5:8; 1 Jn. 3:8; Jn. 8:44; 2 Cor. 2:11). So when we sin, is the devil responsible for our transgressions because he caused us to do it?

The devil does tempt us to sin. He even tried to tempt Jesus to sin (Mat. 4:1-11; Luke 4:1-13). However, if the devil is responsible for our sins, then why will we one day be held accountable for them (2 Cor. 5:10; Rom. 14:12; Jn. 5:28-29; Rev 20:11-12)? It is because the devil cannot “make” us do anything. He only plays a part in our sin by dangling the carrot. James said, “Every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin..” (1:14-15). The devil only tempts, and it is we who either resist or transgress. This is why God “will render to every man according to his deeds” (Rom. 2:6). We have the ability through Christ (Eph. 6:1); (Phil. 4:13) and the responsibility as Christians to “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (Jam. 4:7). After resisting, the devil leaves “for a season” (a while, but never for good) (Lk. 4:13).  Nevertheless,  we  have  “endured’  that temptation to sin (Jas 1:12). Furthermore, with every temptation we are given all the help necessary to withstand the devil; as God will not allow any temptation beyond our individual power to resist, and also gives each and every one of us a faithful way out (1 Cor 10:13).

So when we give in to sin, it is our fault!

Richard Stevens
via Hawn Freeway church of Christ
Dallas, TX

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