Question:

Does Satan know our weakness? If so, does he use people in our lives in ways to get us to fall? I mean is he able to influence relatives, friends to cause one to stumble? Is he able to put people in our lives who seem to be genuine but have evil intentions to a person you know?


Answer:

The Bible warns, "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour" (I Peter 5:8). Thus Satan is constantly on the prowl for victims. He believes he knows from his observations what are people's weaknesses, but he isn't always accurate. "And the LORD said to Satan, "From where do you come?" So Satan answered the LORD and said, "From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it." Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?" So Satan answered the LORD and said, "Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!" And the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person." So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD" (Job 1:7-12).

Satan was wrong. Job didn't curse God despite his misery. "And the LORD said to Satan, "From where do you come?" So Satan answered the LORD and said, "From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it." Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil? And still he holds fast to his integrity, although you incited Me against him, to destroy him without cause." So Satan answered the LORD and said, "Skin for skin! Yes, all that a man has he will give for his life. But stretch out Your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will surely curse You to Your face!" And the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, he is in your hand, but spare his life"" (Job 2:2-6).

Satan was wrong this second time as well. "In all this Job did not sin with his lips" (Job 2:10).

In addition, you will notice that God places limits on Satan. "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it" (I Corinthians 10:13). Yes, Satan can and does place trials and temptations before us from all directions. He even influenced Job's wife to give Job bad advice -- which didn't work. He wants God to fail and he will try all sorts of things. But he can never make us sin. That is something we have to choose to do.