Dispelling Smoke Screens

According to the US Department of Defense, a smoke screen is “a cloud of smoke used to conceal ground maneuver, obstacle breaching, recovery operations, and amphibious assault operations as well as key assembly areas, supply routes, and logistic facilities.”

This definition also accurately describes the tactics employed in spiritual warfare. The enemy of our souls uses a mass of dense artificial “smoke” to mask his movements and conceal his motives from our line of sight. Satan’s first and foremost strategy for our destruction is the smoke screen of deceit.

In Genesis 3, the crafty serpent audaciously enters the Garden of Eden for the sake of proximity — to be within Eve’s line of sight and range of hearing. He engages Eve in a conversation of seed-planting doubt: “Did God really say…?”

Some smoke screens are more obvious than others. I sometimes wonder if the most effective supernatural smoke screen isn’t quite so obvious, but more of a general haze. Whatever the case, Satan’s smoke screens are always intended to conceal, confuse or obscure the truth.

How did our Lord dissipate such smoke screens? When Satan attempted to twist the Scriptures, Jesus was already prepared: full of the Holy Spirit, led by the Holy Spirit, fasted at length, and knew the Word of God well enough to quote it (Luke 4:1-13).

Staying full of the Holy Spirit (“the Spirit of truth” — John 16:13) and the Word of God (“Your word is truth” — John 16:16) are two sure ways to dispel the enemy’s smoke screens!



Photograph by Jung Yeon-Je, AFP/Getty Images

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